This looks beautiful. I am going to make it despite losing chunks of flesh every time I attempt to grate carrots. What’s my problem??? Does anyone else struggle with this? Maybe I need a different tool.
Laura – I’d recommend using a food processor fitted with the grater if you have one!! I just made a grated carrot salad and nicked 4 of my knuckles before I switched to the food processor….what a life saver! (even if it was TOO LATE!).
Also this cake looks divine – I have pistachios too from my carrot salad, so looks like I know where my leftover ingredients will be going!!
Oh my. That beautifully crinkled parchment paper springform liner, gorgeously origami-like dimensional plate, hypnotically askew & chipped mini ice floe filled waterway! Cake doesn’t look bad, either. You make a good argument for a kitchen scale, TIM. ps a standard old school box grater with the handle on top handles my many carrots just fine, Laura. What tool are you struggling with, if you don’t mind me asking? :o) pps & to all the New Year internetiks out there? Well, cleanse THIS! And let me eat TIM’s cake.
Re: Detroit–definitely try Roast and Le Petit Zinc for tasty food. Cass Cafe has a great vibe for hanging out for a low-key beer. For entertainment, head to the DIA and (depending on what’s happening when you’re there and your interests), try to catch a show at the Detroit Opera House or The Dirty Show (around Valentine’s). Don’t be scared of the news around Detroit–revitalization is happening everywhere!
You don’t say if you’re staying downtown or in the burbs but either way there are many restaurants to choose from. If you’re a meat eater Slowes BBQ is great but hard to get in. It has a few really good veggie offerings too. I’m a vegetarian so all of these places are good for meat eaters and veggies alike…
La Feria is a great tapas bar sort of in midtown, El Asador is a delish mexican dive on the SW side. Woodbridge Pub, Cass Cafe, Mercury Bar, Craft Work are all very good. La Dolce Vita is a wonderful old fashioned Italian restaurant. There are many more, of course, but these come to mind right now. These places are all in the city, many in or close to downtown. If you’re staying in the burbs there’s another list! Have a great visit!
Welcome back! Believe it or not, I have everything except the carrots for this cake. Looks wonderful. Back in the day, we used to do a lot of business trips to Detroit, but I don’t know a thing about it now.
Welcome back Tim, I for one have missed you terribly, yours is one of the most intelligent, well written and inspiring blogs out there! I must tell you that because of you I am now the happy owner of a GIR spatula, along with my son’s partner whom I gifted one too this Christmas. He is a pastry chef here in Toronto and quite thrilled to own one too!
Hi Tim. So nice to have you back. Hope you had a nice holiday. I live in Ann Arbor and work part time in Detroit–such a wonderful city to explore. Here are some of my favorite spots for food/drink: Supinos, the best thin crust pizza; Slows, heavenly Southern bbq; Astro Coffee, hipster craft coffee with great vegetarian lunch options and pastries to boot; Detroit Vegan Soul new super popular vegan restaurant in the West Village area of Detroit; Parker St. Market, new specialty food store also in the West Village, they sell like 98% Michigan made food products, be sure to pick up buckwheat chocolate chip cookies/hand pies/slices of pie from Sister Pie (thats where I work and the pastries are divine); Lafayette Coney, the one and only, famous hot dog spot downtown; Green Dot Stables, great cheap bar with a menu of about 40 different types of sliders, awesome late night spot; Two James Distillery, stunning distillery with reasonably priced cocktails and tours; The Sugar House Bar, next to Slow’s/they have gained national recognition for their cocktail program.
In terms of things to see, here are my musts: Detroit Institute of Art; Museum of Contemporary Art, Motown Museum; City Bird/Nest Detroit (really well curated boutique with beautiful home goods); Belle Isle. If you need any more recommendations or further information let me know!
Also–I forgot to mention that I work in the retail department at Zingerman’s Deli. I saw on the blog that you’ve been before but if you’re passing through heading to Detroit, always a fun stop for some shopping.
Welcome back! Ok, ok, I will buy a kitchen scale for the new year. This January, cake is the new kale – I’m in. Drinking juice while standing by the kitchen sink is not as satisfying as a plate and fork. Happy New Year! K xx
P.S. I’ve hear The Shinola store/HQ in Detroit is worth a visit.
I’ve been adding rosewater to more and more things lately. Love the idea of adding it to whipped cream. Try it in an apple crisp! :)
One thing I know about Detroit is it’s home to the Valentine vodka distillery (future Mrs. Valentine here so you bet my Michigan-born future mother-in-law has given us many Valentine vodka gifts). It’s pretty good! We just got an elderflower vodka for Christmas.
Hi Tim! I’m a long time fan of the site, but have never commented (so silly, I know!). Carrot cake has been at the back of my mind for the past couple of weeks so I was very happy to see this posting. I’m wondering if you think the cake would go well with some cream cheese frosting…I can’t help but wanting to add it!
Hi Megan- Thanks for breaking your silence! ; ) I mean, it would not be bad with cream cheese frosting, but for me it would push it over to a side of heavy that I am not interested in. Maybe try it as is first, and then see what you think? Or maybe you are looking for a more traditional carrot cake? This definitely is not a traditional carrot cake.
Thanks for the advice! I just have such a hard time thinking of any dessert with carrots to be without cream cheese. I also love me a hearty cake…I’ll let you know if I try it out! If I find it to be too much, I won’t complain about having to eat the icing on its own :)
I agree with all of the Detroit suggestions mentioned, with the exception of Slow’s. Very overrated food and too much hipster attitude. The Union Woodshop in Clarkston is much better if you are looking for bbq. Other Detroit restaurants I would highly recommend: El Barzon, Selden Standard, Gold Cash Gold, and Torino (in Ferndale). Brunch at Rose’s Fine Food or The Dime Store. Have drinks at Cliff Bell’s. Besides the DIA, make sure you check out Eastern Market!
For Detroit suggestions: Do not miss the Yemen Cafe in Hamtramck! It is some of the best Yemeni food I’ve had in the US. Bonus, it is in a neighborhood with several excellent meat markets, just in case you need to stock up on 14 different kinds of sausage before you leave.
Hi Tim–I discovered your food blog just a couple of weeks ago and have been ogling many recipes (milk liqueur! basque cake!)–but this carrot cake is the first I’ve made, and it was incredible. Some people even said it was among their favorite-ever desserts. I added 1/2 tsp of salt to the batter. I’m a fan of salt in desserts and thought the coconut and carrots could take it. I found this amount to bring out all the flavors without going over the edge, but would not add any more. Thank you for the truly delicious, unique recipe; count me a regular reader!
Incidentally gluten free cakes are my favorite thing – particularly ones that could easily be made lactose-free (coconut oil is my go-to, which seems like it’d be alright with the flavors here) as well. My mom is gluten intolerant and my brother is lactose intolerant, which makes desserts a challenge! I’m filing this away for next time. Thank you!!
Hey Steph- No, they are different things. Superfine sugar is finely ground granulated sugar, it is the standard for baking in the UK. It is sold at most grocery stores in the US and usually comes in a little box. Sometimes it is called caster sugar. It dissolves more easily, is the large advantage. You can replicate it at home by pulsing regular granulated sugar in a food processor. Not exactly the same, but close. Confectioner’s sugar in the US has added cornstarch, you don’t want to use that for this.
Tim, I baked this fabulous cake and added 1/2 tsp of salt per your suggestion. It’s the kind of dessert that’s perfect when you want a cup of coffee and just a couple bites of something. It was enough to make me order “Persiana”, like a really need another cookbook. : )
Hi again, Tim–5 words and you come up with a better joke about our names (name singular?) than I couldn’t think of in 5 minutes. Speaking of salt in desserts, I think you would love the “Milk and Honey” dessert at The Nomad in New York. The recipe is online. A quick google for “Milk and Honey nomad recipe” will lead you to it (I feel weird posting links directly in comments sections, because, uh, supposedly I’m sensitive about being perceived as a spammer).
I am so happy you are coming to visit our great city! Selden Standard and Torino are two unforgettable places to visit. The menu, chefs and staff at both restaurants are fantastic!
If you have time and are here for a Saturday morning/afternoon, try to pop into the winter market at Eastern Market. You can find a lot of delicious things to bring back in your suitcase. Grab a pizza from Supinos (near the market) and you will be very happy.
I’m probably the worst person to ask about anything in the US because I’ve never been there. But nevertheless I just wanted to say yes to having a hard time getting back into the blogging groove after a break, no to New Year’s resolutions (except for this kitchen scale thing. Precision scale: check!) and YES to this cake. Love it. And cleanses? Tsk, so bourgeois.
Made this cake this afternoon for a dinner party and it was a big hit! I’m sort of loose paleo but didn’t tell anyone this was grain-free and no one suspected it was anything but delicious dessert! I did use honey instead of sugar (only bc I recently moved and don’t have a fully stocked kitchen yet) and the honey does bring its own slight taste but it complements the other flavors nicely. Will definitely make again!
THIS CAKE IS BEAUTIFUL! I made this cake dairy and refined sugar free/paleo. Replacing the butter with coconut oil and the sugar with coconut sugar and it was BEAUTIFUL!!! The coconut sugar had a more caramel taste to it and it all worked so beautifully together with the spices. One of my favourite go to recipes! It is sooo yum and can be made healthy!
Im going to try making it today low fodmap, so using walnut meal instead of almond and add some pecans instead of pistashios. Let you know if it is as good. Might add a bit of nutmeg too!?
I made this on the weekend for a dinner party and it was a big hit. I added a thin layer of lemon cream cheese frosting on top and a big pile of toasted coconut flakes and it looked gorgeous.
6 of us managed to almost demolish the entire thing, not sure about the 10 serves. I guess that’s for people with self control.