It is a joy to welcome Laure from Pudding Fairy to the blog today with her carrot cake recipe my kids adore.
Over to the master baker!
The secret is out! My best selling carrot cake recipe, just for you.
Bonjour! My name is Laure. I’m the franglaise, chocolate lover, bakery-assistant-turned-event manager-turned-web-geek-turned….patissier, founder of Pudding Fairy. Think of Pudding Fairy as a magical vitual den where you can make all your cake wishes come true.
Vicki has very kindly offered me a spot on her blog today. What an occasion! So, I thought, I’ve got to share something REALLY special with you. Well, it doesn’t come any more special than this. The most perfect and perfectly behaved, carrot, pineapple and coconut cake recipe.
I spotted the original one in a copy of FoodNetwork (The US version, which I used to buy on my way to Atlanta and back, during my previous life in the corporate world) which I tried but found too heavy and sweet but I could taste it had potential.
So over the following 2 years, I have tweaked it a little, and a little more, and a little more….17 times in total, in fact. It’s now one of my top 3 most requested cake recipes from my Fairy HQ kitchen. And now you can make it too.
The cake is naturally dairy free, and you can make it gluten-free by swapping plain flour for gluten-free flour too. And it’s the easiest carrot cake recipe in the world….
How do I know this? I have made this cake over 132 times. I hope that’s good enough to know! It’s a brilliant recipe to get your kids in the kitchen or give anyone their first taste and success of baking. The basic method is this:
Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl
Mix the wet ingredients in a bowl
Mix the wet ingredients and the dry ingredients together.
The most perfect carrot cake recipe (gluten and dairy free)
2 large eggs (try to get free range ones if you can)
100ml vegetable or sunflower oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
200g grated carrots
100g canned pineapple, drained and crushed
50g dessicated coconut
You’ll need 3 x 6 inch round cake tins if you want to make a celebration cake with 3 layers of cake and 2 layers of filling in the middle or a 12 cupcake tin; or a 2 kgs loaf tin or a tall side 8 inch round tin. They all work.
Baking and prep tips and advice
Oven temperature – pre heat to 180 degrees
Baking time – for thin cakes (no more than 2 inches of batter mix per tin), count around 30 minutes. For a thick cake (4 inches of mix in the 8 inch round tin for example), lower the temperature to 170 degrees and bake for 45-50 minutes.
testing your cake is baked – insert a metal skewer in, it should come out clen. The cake should also feel quite friem to the touch in the centre.
Freezing – this cake freeze beautifully – I often have one tucked away for emergency “quatre heures” (afternoon snack after school) and spontaneous coffee break with my neighbour!
Filling for your carrot cake
The easiest option is to make an American buttercream with cream cheese – Whisk (Carefully to start) 250g soft unsalted butter with 700g icing sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract until smooth. Spoon in 1/2 small tub of plain cream cheese and whisk again until combined.
I find it slightly too sweet for me so I normally make Swiss meringue buttercream instead. There are lots of online demos of how to make it, including this one on Cratsy. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Rc20ZuybHQ).
If you’d like to keep your cake dairy free, you can make you frosting using Stork and icing sugar and vanilla essence (no cream cheese).
1 carrot cake 4 presentation and design ideas
The show stopper celebration cake version – stack your cakes with layers of buttercream, add a thin layer on top and on the sides. Leave it with a bit of texture (less work and more wow effect. Double whammy). Arm yourself with edible flower petals (dried or fresh – I love using the ones from Maddocks Organic Farm in Devon) and gently press petals all the way around and on top of the cake. I used a mixture of dried calendulas and fresh geraniums for this cake, and finished it by adding fresh nasturium detail alongside the board. You can use any edible flower petals you want, just make sure they are edible ones and not toxic. More tips on using fresh flowers on cakes (plus a free mini guide to download.)
The ready slice version – Perfect to take to the school fete for your contribution to the cake stall table. Bake 3x 6 inch round cakes but don’t stack them. Instead, cut them into 6 or 8 even portions each and decorate each slice individually with a little buttercream and more fresh flowers (or sprinkles of your choice!).
The sarnie version – This one is just fabulous for picnics, kids parties and bbq days. Bake your cake mix in 2 deep baking trays (buttered and lined).
The kids birthay cake version – cover your cake in buttercream like for the show stopper cake. Then press dessicated coconut all the way around and on top to make a “fluffy” cake, You can add a princess tiara, a kind’s crown, your kids favourite cartoon characters mini figures…..
The carrot cake below was finished as a celebration cake with buttercream and an edible picture (the car was the actual present!)