I imagine this article will be the first in a series. Tina recently started juicing carrots for fresh juice (this was something she used to do often), and we've been enjoying the crisp, sweet taste of carrot juice. But, it feels wasteful to dispose of all the carrot pulp left over. We don't have even a small yard and we have more pulp than my small window box of herbs can handle as compost, so Tina suggested carrot cake. I readily agreed and started pondering the problem of creating a moist carrot cake from nearly dry carrot pulp.
I started with the standard pound of carrots, except I used carrot pulp from that day's juicing. I thought I'd try this amount since the juice contains a great deal of flavor. I was hoping that by replacing the lost water weight with more pulp, I could produce a strong carrot flavor in the final cake.
I also used an 8 oz. can of crushed pineapples (packaged in its pineapple juice) and drained the juices, pressing down with a spoon to release as much juice as possible. I chose pineapples because I like the taste of pineapples and thought they would introduce a decent amount of liquid to the cake. (It turns out, pineapple has too much juice and the flavor doesn't come through very well.)
I then assembled the rest of the ingredients (from the carrot cake recipe in Baking Illustrated): 2-1/2 cup all-purpose flour, 1-1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 cup light brown sugar, 1-1/4 tsp. baking powder, 1 tsp. baking soda, 1-1/4 ground cinnamon, 1/2-tsp. nutmeg, 1/8 tsp. ground cloves, 1/4 tsp. salt, 4 large eggs, and 1-1/2 cup canola oil. [IMG]
I blended the sugars with the eggs until creamy. [IMG]
Then, I drizzled the canola oil in while the mixer was running. Watch the speed of the mixer or it could fling oil across your kitchen. Other vegetable oils can be used, but I wouldn't recommend using a strongly flavored oil like extra virgin olive. [IMG]
Once the oil was integrated into the eggs and sugar to form a kind of drippy mayonnaise, I sifted the flour, salt & spices, baking soda and powder together and added them to the mixing bowl. I then placed the crushed pineapple and carrot pulp into the mixing bowl as well. I noticed some of my carrot pulp had clumped up, so I did my best to separate the clumps before adding them to the mixing bowl. [IMG]
I mixed everything together until no more dry flour could be seen. By this time, the carrots and pineapple were thoroughly distributed. [IMG]
I poured the batter into a 9x13 in. pan that I had prepared earlier by buttering the bottom and sides, affixing a piece of parchment paper to the bottom (cut to size), and buttering the parchment paper. [IMG]
The cake was then baked on the center rack of a 350°F oven for 40 minutes. I rotated the cake once after 20 min. and checked to see if it was done by inserting a toothpick into the center of the cake. When the cake was fully cooked, the toothpick came out clean. I let it cool completely on a cooling rack. [IMG]
After the cake had been cooling for about two hours, I prepared a simple cream cheese frosting with 8 oz. cream cheese (not the whipped variety), 1-1/4 cup confectioners sugar (also called powdered sugar or icing sugar), 5 Tbs. butter, and 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract. (Again, almost the same ingredients as Baking Illustrated. If you're making "normal" carrot cake, I recommend the recipe from Baking Illustrated, which I why I started with their ingredient set and proportions for this test.) [IMG]
Running the four ingredients in my mixer (after cleaning the bowl) until blended, gave me a smooth, sweet but tangy frosting. I removed the cake from the pan by inverting it onto another sheet pan. I then removed the parchment paper from the bottom of the cake (which was now facing up), and then placed an inverted sheet pan over the cake (so the bottom of the pan was facing up). Flipping both pans over and removing the first one, gave me a carrot cake in good condition and right side up sitting on a sheet pan waiting to be frosted. I used an offset spatula to smear the frosting over the cake. [IMG]
The final cake had a nice strong carrot flavor complimented by an excellent combination of spices. What it was missing was any distinctive taste of pineapple. When you chewed on the pineapple bits, the flavor was barely discernible and the texture was mushy. The interior of the cake was a bit too moist (while the outer pieces were just right), but not yet soggy. One taste tester described the center piece as gooey in consistency - she liked the flavors however. My feeling is that although the water had been extracted from the carrots, Tina's juicer left enough liquid to keep a carrot cake from becoming too dry. The addition of more liquid is probably necessary, but not in the quantities provided by well-drained crushed pineapples. I think next time I'll try a cup of raisins. [IMG]
Carrot Pulp Cake with Crushed Pineapples (makes one moist to gooey 9x13 in. cake)
Preheat oven to 350°F and prepare 9x13 in. (23 x 33 cm) pan
Aaargh! Want to make this sooo bad, but just discovered my son and I have celiac disease. Still having trouble adjusting all the baked goods to work without wheat. Bread slices look like pagodas and dissolve into crumbs. One tray of cookies is fine, the other burnt wafers. Don't think I can take this lovely cake on just yet!
To the previous AC: Actually carrot cakes should work quite well with gluten free flour mixes, because the carrots retain moisture and maybe add a bit of stability (both normally achieved by the gluten).
Good luck with your baking experiments, be sure to be quite precise (and don't use cups, go by weight!).
Thanks for the timely recipe. I received a juicer for Christmas and was thinking that throwing the pulp out seemed wasteful. I had thought of carrot cake, but had not yet got around to trying to adapt a recipe - I will give your advice a try.
I have made both muffins, scones and carrot cake (banana bread, lemon cake etc) with gluten free flour and it works just fine.
As for the recipe itself, I tried it, and it is GREAT!! One point I would mention is to add the carrots first after the oil, and add the dry ingredients all at once, right at the end.
Once the dry ingredients have been added, stop the machine and gently mix by hand, for a few seconds. too much mixing at this point will develop the gluten in the flour and result in a heavier, denser, cake. Enjoy
Hello! I am here on behalf of the membership of The Poppy Club. We appreciate the fabulosity of your blog and congratulate you on your recent success in The Best of Blogs Award competition. We are hosting a party to celebrate you and your fellow finalists and would be honored if you would join us to walk the Red Carpet and greet your fans:
Great idea. You're too young to remember the old recipe for tomato soup cake, but a can of good tomato soup would make a possible substitution for the liquid lost in the carrots. Other possibilities might be tomato or V8 juice. Watch for the high sodium content common in these canned items if this is a health concern.
I found your site while looking for a "raw-egg free" Tiramisu and then while exploring, saw the way you've recorded your carrot cake recipe. Is your program for writing down recipes in graph format readily available as a software program for sale? Or let me guess from the title of the Web site- you developed it yourself...
Joined: 10 May 2005 Posts: 1617 Location: Austin, TX (USA)
Posted: Sat Jan 15, 2005 5:41 pm Post subject:
re: recipe summary notation
The recipes summaries at the end of my recipe articles are my own invention. Currently there is no software available to aid in the construction of these diagrams. I have been working with a laywer to formalize and file patent paperwork for the notation system.
at last, a person who writes their recipes in almost the same style i do, and about time, too. (and i mean the way you list your ingredients and order of processing next to it.)
as for the longwinded descriptions, i do that too because i want to make sure that when my children want to replicate one of my recipes, they will be able to, techniquewise....now all i have to do is work out hot to do this in the pc and i'll be right.
i have a very good recipe for pineapple carrot cake where you don't drain the pineapple syrup, if you are interested (i won't post it here because this is your site and i don't want to be offensive on my first visit).
This cake is really gorgeous. I used a 280g tin of pineapple chunks and put them through my juicer and added the juice from the tin as well. Perhaps half the juice would have been better. I have a small oven, so I baked the cake for 30 minutes, then put a piece of tin foil loosely over the top to prevent the cake baking too hard. After 40 minutes, it was still a little soggy in the middle, so I turned the oven down one 'notch' and baked it for a further 15 minutes. Perfect. Thank you. no more rubbery carrot pulp cakes for me.! !