expat, food, italy, tips

Carrot Cake and Icing recipe

I have been craving a moist ( I hate saying that word ) carrot cake for some time but I always seem to either burn anything I put in the oven or over do some ingredient ( like baking soda ) to make it completely disgusting. Recently for a girls get together I ended up bringing this while also saving some for t-mans parents and everyone loved it! It can be difficult finding all of the ingredients you need when you look up recipes in english so I tweaked a bit from a few different ones. My base recipe comes from Canadian Living and its actually a pumpkin carrot cake but I didn’t add puree to mine..


  • 3/4 cup (175 mL) sugar
  • 3/4 cup (175 mL) packed brown sugar (zucchero di canna in Italy, I actually can find the more packed kind at the Coop or Esselunga supermarkets
  • eggs
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla (essenza di vaniglia , look in the baking aisle you’ll see it in little vials and green packaging )
  • 2 cups (500 mL) all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) baking powder ( lievito )
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) cinnamon (cannella)
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) baking soda ( bicarbonato di sodio )
  • 3/4 tsp (4 mL) salt
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) nutmeg ( noce moscata )
  • 2 cups (500 mL) grated carrots
  • not just for bambini ; )

    1 baggie of pureed carrot and pumpkin ( pictured on the left, you can find this in the store where baby food is sold , seriously it makes the cake moist! ) its called Vellutata Carote e Zucca

  • 1 small bag of chopped walnuts ( I used one of the snack bags with chopped walnuts and cherries..it worked and was cheaper )
  • 1 Orange for zest
  • ICING , 2 packages of Light cream cheese, :3/4 cup (175 mL) butter, softened , 3-3/4 cups (925 mL) icing sugar ( zucchero a velo ) , 1/2 cup (125 mL) whipping cream ( panna da montare )


In large bowl, beat together sugar, brown sugar, eggs, oil and vanilla until smooth. In separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, salt and nutmeg; pour over egg mixture and stir just until moistened. Stir in carrots, zest, pumpkin & carrot mixture,  and nuts. Spread in greased 13- x 9-inch (3.5 L) metal cake pan.

Bake in centre of ( 180°C) oven for about 30 minutes ( the official recipe said 40 minutes but my oven heats up really quick due to it being about 1000 years old and grumpy) .  Let it cool for a while before applying the icing.

Icing: In bowl, beat butter until light and fluffy; beat in your powdered sugar alternately with cream, making 3 additions of sugar and 2 of cream. Cool the icing in the fridge for a few hours before putting on your cake.

I am pretty sure if you are related to Betty Crocker or at the very least , not me, your cake should look like this..

never going to look like this ( my desserts )

My best effort looked like this :

funny hedgehog and my carrot cake muffins

They were awesome though.. and I loved the icing. It was a little runny but hey I did make it myself.. We “attempted” to decorate the muffins by cutting thin strips of carrot to make wheels and put some sliced pineapple on top.. ENJOY!

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3 Comment

  1. Reply
    07.02.2012 at 22:23

    Ahahaha, I hate the word ‘moist’ too. Unfortunately it’s so damn useful when it comes to blathering about food.

    Also, is funny hedgehog a hand puppet? If so, I used to be the proud owner of my own funny hedgehog

    1. Reply
      07.02.2012 at 22:26

      haha I feel the same way about the words “honeysuckle”, “subpoena” and “wetnap” ..as for the funny hedgehog comment, I seem to love the little guys to the extent that whenever I see a cute figurine in a store, I’ll buy it. Hence the one sitting on my table when I snapped the muffin pic. I am very intrigued to see this hedgehog hand puppet though.. 😉

  2. Reply
    07.02.2012 at 23:14

    See, I like the word moist :D. It’s better than the word cleanse… What a wonderful looking cake 🙂

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