Tropical Carrot Cake with White Chocolate Cream Cheese Icing
Talk about decadent! I gained 5 pounds writing the title! But I can assure you it is worth every calorie and every minute on the treadmill afterwards. While many people go the way of traditional cheesecake on Shavuot, I think this cake is original and decadent enough to pass muster with even the biggest critics. What makes the cake tropical is the addition of delicious things like shredded coconut, chopped macadamia nuts (instead of the traditional walnuts or pecans), crushed pineapple and just a little hint of ginger- but what puts the cake over the edge and onto your plate in a big hunk is the icing. Cream cheese icing enhanced with white chocolate? I'll take two to go!! Best of all the cake is pretty simple to put together (in one bowl!), and you can make the icing thin enough that you just need to pour it over the cake- alternatively these would be great baked as cupcakes and iced individually. Enjoy!
For the cake:
3 cups flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup oil
11/2 tsp baking soda
pinch of salt
2 tsp good quality cinnamon
3/4 tsp ground ginger
3 1/4 cups grated carrots (about 4 big carrots)
2 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 cup chopped toasted macadamia nuts
1 cup shredded coconut
1 cup crushed pineapple
In the bowl of a mixer mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and ginger. Slowly add the oil, vanilla, and eggs one at a time. Fold in by hand the pineapple, carrots, nuts and coconut. Grease two 8 inch round pans and divide the batter between the two of them. Bake for about 30 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool before frosting.
For the Icing:
4 oz or 100 grams of white chocolate
2- 8 oz bars cream cheese or about 450 grams
1 cup butter, softened
2 tsp vanilla
8 cups confectioners sugar
4 Tbl milk
Melt white chocolate in the microwave on low making sure it doesn't burn. Beat cream cheese and butter in a mixer until smooth. Beat in chocolate and vanilla and gradually add in sugar until combined. Add the milk and mix in adding more if necessary until you achieve good frosting consistency. You can make the frosting easily spreadable by leaving out the milk or you can do what I did which was add the milk to make more of an icing that you pour over the cake.
look at that icing just ooooooooozing!