September is like a seasonal limbo here in Berlin. One day it’s fresh and perfect for comfy socks and a big sweater. The next day it’s sweltering and back to wearing as little clothes as possible. The same goes for cooking. One day you buy lots of ingredients for soup then it’s 30°C the next day and soup no longer sounds like the last thing you want to eat. There is, however, one thing that can bring happiness to this jumble of when-will-fall-finally-arrive emotion, and that is Carrot Cake!
Half of me sees nut-free carrot cake as a summer treat, probably because one of my summer jobs in college was baking carrot cakes for a golf club. The other half feels carrot cake is a fall delicacy; blame cinnamon for that. So what better time to make a carrot cake than in between the two seasons!
Let them eat nut-free Carrot Cake!
This recipe is based on Mother Berta’s carrot cake. I used it back when I baked for the golfers, and it was a hit! Mother Berta’s cake is moist, dense, and has the perfect amount of carrot flavour. The only thing is, I find it too sweet.
A sweet cake plus cream cheese frosting is like a sugary punch to the face. It became my mission to unsweeten this cake so it can be enjoyed without the sugar coma. It was actually pretty easy to mellow down the sweetness in the cake, all you have to do is to swap out the crushed pineapple (an allergen for me) for unsweetened apple sauce. Next, make it 100% whole wheat flour to create a richer earthy feel to the cake.
These small changes give the cake a richer and well I guess fall-ier feel!
Cream Cheese Frosting
Now let’s talk cream cheese frosting. I love everything about cream cheese frosting. But I am not a purest, and cut my frosting with whip cream because I like a lighter texture. It’s important to note that because the recipe contains folded in whip cream, it won’t harden like most cream cheese frostings. If you like a traditional thick frosting then I would suggest using the one in Mother Berta’s carrot cake.
P.S. You can use this batter to make adorable cupcake sized carrot cakes!Print
Nut free carrot cake is made using apple sauce for a dense and moist cake! Served with cream cheese frosting it’s perfect for coffee or dessert.
- 3 cups Carrots – grated
- 2 cups Whole Wheat Flour
- 3/4 cup Unrefined Sugar
- 2 tsp Baking Soda
- 2 tsp Cinnamon
- 1 cup Canola Oil (Rapeseed oil)
- 3 Eggs
- 1 1/2 cup Applesauce (unsweetened)
- 1 cup Raisins
- 1 cup Coconut Flakes (unsweetened)
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 2 cups Powder Sugar
- 350g Cream Cheese
- 1/4 cup Butter – softened
- 1 Vanilla bean – seeds scraped out
- 1 cup Whip Cream – whipped to form hard peaks
Make the cake
- Preheat oven to 350°. Butter and flour a 10 x 2-inch spring form pan.
- Combine carrots, flour, sugar, baking soda and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl.
- In a separate bowl beat eggs and oil together.
- Add egg-oil mixture, applesauce, raisins, and coconut to dry ingredients. Mix well.
- Pour batter into form and bake from 45 mins to an hour. You want to be able to place a toothpick in the middle of the cake and have it come out clean.
Make the frosting
- Whip the cream until hard peaks form.
- In a large bowl blend powder sugar, cream cheese, butter, and vanilla seeds.
- Once the mixture is smooth fold in whipped cream.
- Let chill.
Assembling the carrot cake
- Let the cake cool completely before adding the icing.
- To assemble the two-layer version of the cake, cut the cake in half through the middle. Adding toothpicks around the cake to act as a guide for your knife is a good way to make the cut even.
- Once cake is in two pieces, add half of the icing with more frosting in the middle. Place the second layer on the cake and gently press it down – the frosting in between the layers may ooze out a little (pretty!).
- Frost the top of the cake. The icing will be runny and have a beautiful drip effect.
- Keep the cake refrigerated before serving.
- Bonus! You can toast some coconut flakes and sprinkle them on top.
- Cuisine: Dessert
Kortney is your typical atopic triad! She manages asthma, eczema, environmental and food allergies. Kortney is a co-creator of the online community Allergy Travels and co-host of The Itch Podcast. She wants to spread joy in a community that can easily see the hard side of life with atopic disease and believes that you can have a full life with food allergies, it may just be lived a little differently!