Thursday, April 28, 2011

Carrots 'n' Dates Whole Wheat Birthday Cake

Before I start this post, I'd like to thank all of you who wished me today, on the phone, on Facebook, on email, and in person...Made my day perfect!

Here's a birthday cake you can dig into to your heart's content without feeling guilty about the calories! Birthdays have always been special occasions in our family, with a cake and the usual candle blowing retinue being the norm, no matter how old you are. Of course, now I put just one candle on the cake :-)...

It's been my deeply held belief and practice for many years now that I don't do any cooking or baking myself on this day! After all today's the day I have to be pampered :-) When I was a child, my mom always baked my birthday cake herself-a double layered chocolate cake with chocolate ganache as a topping and filling in between the two layers (still my all-time favorite)...Calling it super-yummy would be an understatement! Over the past few years, my mom isn't able to bake as frequently as she used to, so my dad would go out and get the cake, usually a day before and keep it as a surprise for me (which wouldn't be a surprise for me, of course!). Post marriage, this ritual continues :-)...

This year is the first time I've baked my birthday cake myself. I wanted it to be a treat for my family and my friends in my Montessori class. My first thought was to re-create my favorite chocolate cake, but then I changed my mind at the last minute when I noticed another recipe in my book that mom used to bake often for us as kids-a cake that packs in the goodness of carrots and dates with wheat flour (not refined flour). You can't get healthier than that! This was the first time I baked this particular cake and it turned out really delicious, perfectly moist and soft. It was big hit with not only my family but also my new friends in my Montessori teacher training class (all 20 of them and our instructor-guide too!)...Don't take my word for it though...try it for yourself and see!

Makes a 1 to 1.5-kilo cake that gives about 20 medium-size slices
  1. 2 cups wheat flour
  2. 2 cups grated carrots
  3. 1 cup grated seedless dates
  4. 1 cup vegetable oil (I used sunflower oil)
  5. 1 cup powdered sugar
  6. 3 eggs
  7. 2 teaspoon baking powder
  8. 1/4 teaspoon soda bicarbonate powder (cooking soda)
  9. 2 tablespoon vanilla essence
  10. Half a cup of chocolate chips
  • Preheat oven to 150 C.
  • Sieve the flour with the baking powder and soda bicarbonate and keep aside.
  • Into a mixing bowl, break the 3 eggs and beat till frothy (use an electric beater itself for optimal results).
  • Then add the sugar and beat for 1 minute.
  • Now add the oil and vanilla essence and beat for 2 more minutes.
  • Into this, add the flour and mix well with a wooden spoon.
  • Add the grated carrots and dates to this mixture and make sure everything is well combined, but do not stir too much.
  • Transfer to a greased cake tin (or nonstick or silicon-then you don't have to grease!).
  • Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour in a 120 C oven.
  • When cool, remove from tin and serve as you please-either as it is or with a dollop of cream or icecream on top!
  • To test if the cake is done, insert a toothpick/clean butter knife/cake tester into the cake. If it comes out clean, its done. However, if there are crumbs or gooey batter attached to it, bake some more!
  • You could substitute the vanilla essence with cinnamon powder or nutmeg powder or both!
  • For the grated dates-I first tried grating it by hand but by the time I'd done one date, I'd lost patience. That's when my mom walked in and said she used to do this in the food processor. You can also do this in the spice jar of your mixie. Just chop the dates coarsely and sprinkle some flour on top before grinding so it doesn't get pasty.
I am linking this to the following blog events:


Reshmi Mahesh said...

Wish you a very Happy B'day....Cake looks superb...

Emreen said...

Wish you a very very Happy Birthday ...!!

The cake has turned out perfect...!! Congrats Dearie on the award ...Have a great time and a great weekend !!

divya said...

Awesome recipe and wonderful clicks...

Madhura Manoj said...

Many many happy returns of the day.
Cake looks Spongy & perfect.

Biny Anoop said...

Hey happy b'day dear belated hi sahi...great cake recipe...looks great....congrats for the award

Prathima Rao said...

Happie bday!!! The cake looks perfect & moist!!
Prathima Rao
Prats Corner

Swati Sapna said...

Hey Karishma! The cake looks smashing :)I am a huge fan of carrot cakes in any form... especially spiced carrot cakes! yumm!
and about the comments on my blog, im using a new interface actually... so all you have to do is click on a particular post and at the end of it u can post comments :) but it jus doesnt show on the main page as no. of comments somehow :(

Katerina said...

Happy Birthday Karishma! I am trully sorry I missed that but we had a death in the family and we are still trying to return to our normal life. I wish to you many happy birthdays with your loved ones. May your life be a happy and blessed one. The cake looks absolutely perfect for the occasion!

Allison @ Alli 'n Son said...

What an interesting cake. I bet it's very moist. Happy late birthday!

I'd love to have you share this recipe on my weekly link-up, Sweet Tooth Friday. I hope to see you there.

Ambreen said...

Wishing you a happy belated birthday!
Delicious & healthy cake ... perfectly baked. Love the topping :)

kankana said...

Happy Birthday to you .. happy birthday to you .. happy birthday Karishma .. happy birthday to you :) here I sang my song .. now I want that cake and a HUGE piece.

Just like you i like to be pampered too on my birthday .. this year I made hubby bake a cake for me :P :)

Mehjabeen Arif said...

Love the cake !

New to ur space and Happy to follow u

Do visit me as time permits

Aparna said...


Iam not the baking kind but tried your cake and it turned out well. My hubby and kids loved it. The encouragement is so fulfilling and now i can hardly wait for another baking session :-)
Thank you for sharing the recipe.

Btw iam glad you are from Mahe. I have never come across any online Maheian before :-)

Karishma said...

Hey Aparna,
Thank you for your warm comments-it's always gratifying when someone tries out a recipe I've posted and takes the time to comment about it and especially when they loved the outcome :-)...really glad your family loved it and I hope you'll keep coming back for more recipes :-) btw, would have loved to get in touch with you now that I know you're a Maheian too! Email me if you like using the "contact me" option on top of the blog!