Carrot Birthday Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

11.29.2013


Carrot Birthday Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

Another month, another birthday cake! Last month I started what I intend will be a monthly thing in this blog: to bake birthday cakes for my friends – hopefully layer and frosted because occasions to do so are scarce and I kinda like them. It’s like playing in cake land, trying to make towering layers, all frosted and filled, some rusticity in the decoration, because it is me, after all, and you all know I don’t have the patience for a neat stack of perfect layers and inches of frosting, each measured to give the optical illusion of, well, a perfect cake. 

Carrot Birthday Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

Carrot Birthday Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

And if you didn’t know that about me because you’re new to this blog, open any cake recipe in the index and you’re bound to bump into an explanation similar to this one. I’m so predictable sometimes.
So we need flavor. When the dress is not nice you need the brains.

Carrot Birthday Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

And this carrot cake recipe delivers it. It’s hands down my favorite one, full of spices and moist as a baby’s pacifier. Make it any shape you want – in a tube pan, layers, cupcakes, loaves – it’s very adaptable. My list this month is led by one of the most generous blogger friends I know, Renee of Magnolia Days and Heather of Girlichef, and I thought these flavors matched them. It is a month heavy on celebrations for me, with many friends and cousins blowing out candles.
So leave me your birthday date below in the comments, and I will bake you a cake. How's that?

Carrot Birthday Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

Carrot Birthday Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

How many carrot cake recipes have you made? Have in your files? Want to try? 
They’re almost as popular as banana bread recipes, and we all know there are a gazillion of those. Carrot cakes are popular and for a reason, they’re so darn amazing. Pair it with cream cheese frosting and you have one of the best cakes outside the ones with dulce de leche, my favorites of all times.  Add maple syrup to the frosting, the real stuff that I told you about when I made the pumpkin cheesecake, and this birthday just got better.
  
Carrot Birthday Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting



CARROT BIRTHDAY CAKE WITH MAPLE CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

Makes 8 servings

Ingredients

For the carrot cake:
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs, room tº
1 teaspoons vanilla extract
¼ cup milk
¼ cup water
1 1/2 cups peeled, grated carrots (about 6oz)
1 apple, peeled, cored, and diced small
3 tablespoons heavy cream

For the maple cream cheese frosting:
1 packages (8oz) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
3 Tbs maple syrup
3 to 4 cups confectioners' sugar, or as needed

1 cup whole walnuts, toasted, for filling and decoration
Maple syrup


Instructions

For the carrot cake:
Preheat oven to 350º. Butter and flour (or spray) a 7-inch cake pan with removable bottom.
Sift flour, baking powder and soda, and spices into a bowl and reserve.
In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat butter for 1 minute. Gradually add both sugar beating continuously, for 3 or 4 minutes, until light and fluffy.
Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla and mix.
Add dry ingredients in 3 additions, alternating with water and milk in 2 additions. Do not over mix.
Add carrots, apple and cream and mix just until combined.
Fill cake pan with the batter, smooth top and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until tester inserted in center comes out clean. It might take more depending on the pan.
Let cool completely on wire rack and then unmold.

For the maple cream cheese frosting:
In a bowl beat cream cheese and butter until very smooth.
Add 2 cups confectioners’ sugar, ½ cup at a time, and beat until smooth. Add maple syrup, and then add more sugar until you have a thick mixture good to frost.

To assemble:
Cut cake into three layers. Reserve 8 walnut halves for decoration.
Put the first layer on the cake stand or serving platter, and fill with about a cup of cream cheese frosting. Add a handful of coarsely broken walnuts, and a big drizzle of maple syrup.
Repeat with the second layer, the frosting, walnuts and syrup.
Add the top layer and frost with a layer of cream cheese mixture. Make a swirl on top and decorate the sides with 8 half walnuts, one for each slice.
Serve with extra maple syrup.
  
Carrot Birthday Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting



46 comments:

  1. My birthday is next month... I'd love to have such a gorgeous carrot cake!!

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    1. It won't be the same one, but you'll be getting a yummy one for sure Montse!

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  2. Oh Paula, you completely made my day. Thank you so much for the over the top birthday cake. You must know my tastes well. I only wish I could sit at a table with you and enjoy it as we talk and laugh and more. One day it will happen and I can't wait for that day. Hugs to you.

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  3. I love carrot cake any time of the year. I haven't made it a very long time!

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  4. Okay, I gained two pounds just looking at the pictures but it was worth it!! What an amazing looking cake!!!

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  5. Wow now that is a carrot cake! Gorgeous!

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  6. Just gorgeous, Paula! I love the shot of the maple syrup being poured over the cake!

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  7. I am with Susan - love the shot with the syrup oozing down the sides! I need to get into some layer cake baking - it looks like so much fun! ~ David

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  8. El frosting, Paula ... qué delicia !

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    1. Si, no? Lástima que el maple syrup no se consigue casi

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  9. Your carrot birthday cake is indeed blessed with a plethora of lovely spices, Paula! Thank you for sharing your gorgeous photos and recipes...Believe we are both twins born in the month of June =)

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  10. I think your cake is a thing of pure beauty, and that photo with the drizzle falling on it, honestly made me go into a daze...

    Carrot cake was one of the few cakes I associate with my childhood, but the Brazilian kind never had a white icing, it was a thin, chocolate layer that kind of crackled on top. I've always wanted to find that recipe of my childhood, and your post will send me into a serious expedition towards my past

    sweet memories!

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    1. I love the word crackly applied on an icing! With chocolate, it sounds very intriguing and good Sally

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  11. My wedding cake was a carrot cake with cream cheese frosting. Needless to say I am very fond of carrot cake and always ready to try a new version! Maple Cream sounds so much better than the standard cream cheese frosting, I can't wait to try this recipe!

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  12. Oh, man...one of my favorite cakes!!! And yours is gorgeous...and I love that you've added apple. Perfect.

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  13. Well, i just recommended this to my sister...
    my niece is had a problem with eating carrot, i guess she won't even recognize the carrot!
    Great job and fancy photographed!

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  14. The cake looks delicious. Carrot Cake is one of the best!

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  15. My birthday is January 23 and I'd love if you'd bake a cake for me! Now if only I could taste it. This cake has my mouth watering, Paula! Especially with that drizzle of maple syrup. Layer cakes are such a great treat!

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  16. This looks so rich and decadent...just the right one I would love for my birthday too.

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  17. We won't talk about how many different carrot cake recipes I have churned out :-) Beautiful cake.

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  18. Oh Paula this is a fabulous cake.
    You've taken it up a few very good notches!

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  19. Wow, gorgeous carrot cake, which is my favorite kind of cake-love carrots, love sugar-love cake..they just go together in such a fine way ..also the maple cream cheese frosting-genius way to frost a carrot cake ;)

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  20. Me encanta en queque de zanahoria, me gust amucho por la cantidad de especias que lleva y sobre todo la humedad, debe ser de la misma zanahoria, verdad? Y con frurtas secas...insuperable.

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  21. I must tell you, that 4 members of my family favorite cake is the Carrot Cake...and your my dear friend, is the most superb and decadent version I have ever laid my eyes on!
    The maple cream chees frosting is so droolworthy super delicious and the pure ingredients cannot be substituted for any other cake ingredients. The photos are breathtaking and so alive...makes one want to take a fork to scoop right into it through the monitor screen! Hugs,

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  22. It wouldn't have occurred to me to describe a cake as "moist as a baby’s pacifier" but that's so wonderfully descriptive! Really nice recipe - thanks.

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  23. This ist the yummiest carrot cake I have ever seen or imagine! Thanks, Paula :))

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  24. Apples in carrot cake sounds even more delicious! I got to try baking one too, the frosting looks perfect to me!

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  25. i am ashamed to admit, paula... i don't think i have made a carrot cake! this one looks supermoist with the apple in it, and all those spices... i shall have to make one after all!
    and my birthday is in may ;-)

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  26. This is amazing, Paula! Thanks so much for including me, especially with such a wonderful cake. Carrot cake is one of my favorites!

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  27. Love this cake! But, I'd be the only one eating it in my family.

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  28. Oh this cake looks seriously good, lovely and moist and packed with flavour. I am adding this to my "must bake" list.

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  29. Paula, this looks incredible and who doesn't like carrot cake? No one has ever baked me a cake. My mother always said that my birthday was too close to my dad's so she would make him a cake and not me. His birthday is December 25th. Really. Mine is a few days before!

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  30. First off, you're crazy if you think this isn't a "perfect" cake - it's awesome! You and I are totally alike in the cake department - we go for substance over style, flavour over looks. I can't make a "perfect" cake to save my life - they always look a bit of a mess, just like me. But at least they taste good! I have so many carrot cake recipes that I've never tried but this one will go to the top of my list since it's endorsed by you. Oh, and as for my birthday, it's July 13 so you have a lot of time to plan what extravagant cake you'll be making me ;) This is such a lovely idea, Paula. I'm not surprised it came from you since you're such a loving, generous person!

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  31. I love carrot cake with cream cheese frosting but you really made it special with the maple. :)

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  32. That may be the most beautiful cake ever! My friend Jenn has a b-day coming up in January and carrot cake is her favorite - a perfect excuse to try this gorgeous recipe.

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  33. Ohhh my gosh. Swoon! Seriously, those layers of cake and gorgeously moist cream frosting are to-die-for! Love it Paula x

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  34. What a lovely cake. Anyone would be lucky to receive this.

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  35. Was looking for a great carrot cake recipe and of course I came across this one - just about perfect!

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  36. Happy New Year, my friend!!! Wishing you the BEST in 2014!!! xo

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  37. This is the most appetizing carrot cake that I have ever seen, Paula! It is making me drool...So pinned! Happy New Year!!!

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  38. .....MMM that looks good, wish I had a piece right now, I love carrot cake and make them often. I have never tried adding maple to the cream cheese icing. I will have to give that a try.

    visit my site sometime, if you like chocolate, you will like this one; http://michaelswoodcraft.wordpress.com/2014/01/08/chocolate-cheesecake/ :-)

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  39. Wow that cake is stunning, it also looks very moist and super delicious. I was planning on making carrot cake in the coming weeks and I like the idea of putting apple in it too. Very cool.

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  40. Hi,
    What a lovely cake!
    It looks so nice and delicious.
    I will try to make this cake.
    Thanks for share the recipe.

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