More specifically, Coconut Ginger Macadamia Nut Carrot Cake as the happy birthday cake for the farmer!
Happy Birthday to my old man!
This is a recipe that I tried years ago from Vegan with a Vengeance; I didn’t love it then, but when I was thinking about which cake to make for his birthday this one popped into my head. Despite moldy all-purpose flour (which I chucked, of course), despite breaking the cake into three pieces as I was putting it on the cooling racks, and despite being a wee bit overcooked, it still turned out quite well. Of course I want to share it here, because the end result was beautiful and tasty!
Coconut Ginger Macadamia Nut Carrot Cake with Maple Ginger Frosting
(adapted from VwaV by Isa Chandra Moskowitz; makes one 8×8 cake; a note: check out this quick post if you are going to make this cake! These are some pointers! )
3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour (see note below)
1/2 cup white spelt flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
pinch sea salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup apple juice
1/4 cup liquid coconut oil
6 tbsp turbinado sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup ground macadamia nuts
1 cup shredded carrots (about 3 carrots, grated on a cheese grater)
2 tsp grated fresh ginger
- Preheat the oven to 350degrees. Line a square or round cake pan with parchment paper, and grease the sides with coconut oil.
- In a large bowl mix the flours, b. powder, b. soda, salt, spices, and coconut. Stir to combine.
- In another larger bowl mix the juice, oil, sugar, maple syrup, and extract. If your apple juice and/or maple syrup are in the fridge, you will have to warm this liquid mixture to keep the coconut oil from solidifying. I simply put my pyrex bowl (oven safe!) in the preheating oven until all the coconut oil was melted and the mixture was blendable).
- Pour the dry ingredients into wet, mix for a few strokes, and then add the nuts, carrots, and ginger. Combine gently until just mixed (no dry spots). Pour into your prepared pan and smooth the top.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center. Cool on racks (try to not break it!).
A note on the flours: As I was making this recipe I realized that my all-purpose flour was a bit sticky and off (which explains why my cookies didn’t turn out well yesterday!). I made a quick substitution with whole wheat pastry flour, which is always a good substitute for at least half the flour in a recipe. But I wanted to make sure the cake retained the lightness of the AP flour, so I used a white spelt flour, which is significantly lighter than whole spelt flour; I also just learned that in order to substitute with spelt you should add some extra flour, which is included in the above measurements. If you opt to use all-purpose, or a combination of AP and WWPF, keep the flour measurements to 1 cup + 3 tbsp only.
Another note: be sure to use parchment and grease the pan. Let it cool completely before removing from the pan, and do so very gently! Also, so choose the turbinado sugar; I tried using coconut sugar for another batch and it did not work out as nicely as the photo!
Maple Ginger Frosting
1/2 cup toasted coconut
1/4 cup toasted shredded carrot
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup earth balance, room temperature
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
2 tsp maple extract
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
1 tsp dried ground ginger
- While your oven is preheating for the cake, toast the carrot and coconut. Simply add to a pan and put in the oven for about 10 minutes, until you can smell the coconut toasting. Be careful to not let it burn- when it comes out of the oven it will still cook. Toss with the cinnamon, and let cool on the side.
- Whip the EB with a whisk until smooth. Sift in the powdered sugar, 1/2 cup at a time (very important to sift, or you get clumpy frosting!). Add in the extracts and ginger, and whip until well combined. Add a splash of soymilk if the frosting is too dry; alternatively, add more powdered sugar if it is too saucy.
- When your cake is cool, frost with a thin layer, then add a thicker layer and spread evenly across the top. Sprinkle the toasted carrots & coconut on top. Enjoy!