Sunday, March 14, 2010

SMS - Carrot Cake

This week's Sweet Melissa Sundays recipe was Carrot Cake, chosen by Julie of Little Bit of Everything. This is an oil-based recipe, so you can pretty much whip this up anytime you feel like it. I halved the recipe and served the one-layer cake with White Chocolate Mousse I had left from making my wedding anniversary cake. I've tweaked the recipe a little bit by adding orange zest to the batter as well as 2-3 Tbsp of wheat bran. My guests and I loved this carrot cake. I received 2 recipe requests that night :o)

The batter comes together quickly, although I deviated a little bit from the directions and beat the sugar and eggs until pale and fluffy, and only then slowly drizzled in the oil to emulsify the egg mixture. Then add carrots and the dry ingredients, and pop it in the oven. Since I only made half the recipe, I ended up making one 8" round cake and one cupcake. I frosted the cake with White Chocolate Mousse which went really well with the carrot cake.

A big thanks to Julie for picking another SMS winner. If you'd like the recipe, you can find it HERE.

Final thoughts/tips:
  •  Everybody who tried this cake, love it. It was moist and tender, with great flavor from the spices I added and the zest. The zest of 1/2 orange gave it a subtle citrus flavor. Next time I would increase that to the zest of 1 whole orange.
  • I substituted 25% of the sugar with dark brown sugar because that's the ratio in my favorite carrot cake.
  • Since this is already a "healthy" cake, given that it has carrots in it, I added 2-3 Tbsp of wheat bran. Unlike whole wheat flour, wheat bran doesn't make baked goods dense or turn them into doorknobs.
  • I omitted the walnuts because I'm allergic to walnuts.
  • Instead of the specified amount of cinnamon (1.5 Tbsp for the entire batch), I used 1 tsp of ground cinnamon, and a dash of freshly ground nutmeg, cloves, allspice, and ginger.
  • Don't forget to check out the other SMS bakers.


  1. Hanna, you are so clever! This sounds especially good with the under current of orange and wheat bran for nuttiness.

  2. I love it! It looks amazing. I liked the fact that you added the orange to the cake instead of having it in the frosting. It looks like white chocolate and carrot cake go together!

  3. Looks yummy! So, which do you like better? This carrot cake or Rose's carrot cake? Just wondering...

  4. Beautiful cake. How do you do that with the frosting?

    Thanks for baking with me!!

  5. Hanna,

    I like your spin on the Carrot Cake recipe. Very interesting how you designed the top of your cake.

    Have a great day!

  6. Love all the tweeks you added to your version! And, how did you do that frosting design on top? Beautiful!

  7. Your cake looks beautiful, per usual. I thought adding a variety of spices was the way to go, all cinnamon would have been too much. Thanks for the idea of the orange zest in the cake; I felt the flavor could have been elevated just a bit and it sounds like that was the key.

  8. Thank you very much for stopping by and your kind words.

    @Faithy: although I like Rose's addition of a tablespoon of cocoa powder, I like this cake better because it's moist without feeling too oily. Even with Rose's recipe, I reduced the oil a bit.

    @Julie, @Susan: to make that design, you take an offset metal spatula (or use the back of a spoon), and you basically draw small C's on top of the cake, one next to the other, row by row. Make sure the cake is covered with a thick enough layer of frosting (~1/2"), so that the cake is not exposed while drawing the C's. I hope that makes sense.

  9. I love the way you decorated the top of your cake Hanaa! It's lovely! Great changes to the recipe - you really made it your own.

  10. Hanna - Thanks for the information on the decoration. It's just beautiful. Can't wait to try it on the next layer cake.

  11. I love carrot cake, Hanaa, and I envy your frosting skills. Mine always looks like Shrek frosted the cake!

  12. The cake looks awesome, iam sure super yumm too!

  13. Hanaa, you sneaky thing you! LOVE the addition of wheat germ! And what a great way to use up your white chocolate mousse. Briallant for using a spice combo and the orange zest "in" the batter is another change I want to try too. Another Great cake Hanaa!

  14. Great looking and tasting cake as always Hanaa,
    As you know, despite my recent upset stomach , and the fact that I've been refraining from both baking and eating sweets, I tried your carrot cake, and it seemed agreeing with my stomach. It was very light, yet tasty
    Adding wheat germs enhanced both the flavor and the nutritional value.
    Thanks for having us over at the girls party..It was fun!!!

  15. Great design. It makes me think of clouds - I think mostly b/c of the color. So how many baking club are you part of?!?!

  16. Hi Hanaa. Thanks for checking ou my blog ;0)
    Your carrot cake looks lovely - especially like the thick layer fo icing - if you are anything like me, that is the part of the cake I save till last to eat! Yum ;0)

  17. Thanks for stopping and taking the time to leave a comment. It's always a welcome surprise :o)

    @Wafae: I'm glad you liked it and that it agreed with your upset stomach.

    @Jenn: Ha ha. I'm part of 3 baking clubs, one of which I'm a co-creator of (ABC of the Month).

    @Chele: thanks for stopping by. I hope you visit again :o)

  18. I love how you added orange zest to the batter instead of the frosting. I'm also impressed that you had extra frosting to use - it never sits around long enough to make it to a 2nd use around here :-)

    Thanks for stopping by and commenting on my blog. Sorry I'm late on the reply. I've been out of town and just got back this evening.

  19. The cake looks so beautiful Hanaa - the designs on top remind me of seashells - beautiful. I know it was delicious! joan


Thank you for visiting my blog and leaving a comment.