100 ml turnip rape, sunflower or corn oil
100 ml sugar
50 ml soft brown sugar (firmly packed)
200 ml very finely grated carrot (about 1½ - 2 large carrots)
50 g finely chopped or ground walnuts
175 ml flour
¾ tsp baking powder
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp vanilla sugar
75 g unsalted butter
1 tsp vanilla sugar
about 300 ml (about 180 - 230 g) icing sugar
95 g soft, smooth cream cheese (eg spreadable "Philadelphia")
(almond paste carrots for garnish)
Beat the oil and sugars until well combined. Add the egg and continue beating until the mixture is smooth and somewhat fluffy.
Stir in the grated carrots and the walnuts. Combine the rest of the dry ingredients and gently fold in the batter.
Butter the sides and the bottom of a small, round springform pan (Ø less than 16 centimetres). In addition, you may line the bottom of the pan with a circle of lightly buttered parchment paper.
Pour the batter in the pan, smoothing out the surface if it is uneven.
Bake the cake at 175 °C in the lower part of the oven for between 30 - 55 minutes, or until a cake tester/toothpick inserted in the middle of it comes out clean.
Remove the cake from the pan and place on a wire rack to cool. Meanwhile, prepare the icing.
Bring the butter and the cream cheese to room temperature. Beat the butter until very light and fluffy. Add the vanilla sugar, then gradually add the icing sugar, beating on high speed until the mixture is thick and stiff. Stir the cream cheese smooth and add to the butter mixture, beating just for a couple of seconds to get a smooth icing.
Spread the mixture evenly on the top and sides of the cooled down cake.
If you like, garnish the cake with miniature carrots made of almond paste dyed with orange (or a mixture of red and yellow) and green food colouring.
Note: this recipe results in a rather small cake. If you like, you can easily double the recipe. Use a slightly larger cake pan and increase the amount of icing as well.
Recipe source: adapted from "Porkkanakakku", Helsingin Sanomat/Ruoka & Juoma, 2004, and "Classic carrot cake frosting" by food writer Nigel Slater/Observer Food Monthly, April/2005.