- 440g / 20 oz can crushed pineapple , drained but RESERVE juice (Note 1)
- 1/4 cup (65 ml) reserved canned pineapple juice (from canned pineapple above)
- 3/4 cup (185 ml) milk , at room temperature (full or low fat)
- 1 tsp white vinegar (or lemon juice or other clear vinegar, (Note 2)
- 3 eggs (55g/2oz each)
- 1 1/2 cups (265g) brown sugar style="color: #999999;">(loosely packed)
- 1/2 cup (125 ml) vegetable oil (or canola)
- 2 cups (300g) flour , plain / all purpose
- 2 tsp baking soda (aka bi carb soda, Note 3) (NOT BAKING POWDER)
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp cinnamon powder
- 2 cups grated carrot , about 2 carrots, peeled (Note 4)
- 1/4 cup coconut , shredded or desiccated (plain / unsweetened)
- 1/2 cup walnuts or pecans , roughly chopped
- 180g / 6oz cream cheese , at room temperature (Note 5)
- 225g / 1 cup unsalted butter , softened
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 4 cups (480g) icing sugar / powdered sugar , sifted if clumpy (Note 6)
- Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F (all oven types). Grease and line two 20-22.5 cm/8 - 9" round pans OR a 9 x 13" / 22 x 33cm pan with baking/parchment paper. (Note 7)
- Drain crushed pineapple well, reserving the juice. Measure out 1/4 cup of pineapple juice.
- Whisk Dry ingredients in a large bowl.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the milk, vinegar, eggs, sugar, oil and the 1/4 cup pinepple juice from Step 2.
- Stir in carrot, crushed pineapple, coconut and pecans into the Wet ingredients bowl.
- Pour Wet into Dry ingredients, stir until flour is incorporated.
- Pour into prepared pan(s). Bake round cakes for 35 minutes, rectangle cake for 40 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean and the cake is golden on top.
- Rest for 10 minutes in the pan before turning out onto a cooling rack. Frost once completely cool.
CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
- Beat together cream cheese, butter and vanilla until smooth. Then beat in the icing sugar in 2 batches until it is well incorporated and the frosting is fluffy - about 3 minutes on speed 7 stand mixer.
- Flip one cake upside down on serving platter (for flat surface). Spread with 1/3 frosting. Place 2nd cake upside down on frosting. Frost top and sides with remaining frosting.
- If cooler than 25°C/77°C and not humid, ok to keep cake in airtight container not in fridge. If very humid OR warmer than 25°C/77°C, store in fridge (Note 8).
Note about different measures: Cups and other cooking measures differ slightly from country to country. This cake has been tested ensure it works using both metric (Australia, UK, Europe) and US measures.
1. Crushed pineapple - 20oz = 565g, not 440g. However, in Australia, crushed pineapple comes in 440g so I just use 1 x 440g can. The first time I made it, I measured 565g out accurately, but the 2nd time I just used 1 x 440g can and did not notice a difference.
2. Vinegar (sub lemon juice) - this gives baking soda/bi-carb a rapid activation boost to give this cake rise. Required in this recipe because it's such a moist cake.
3. Baking soda / bi carb - this is about 3x stronger than baking powder. Can sub 6 tsp baking powder but cake will have slightly less rise.
4. Carrot - grate then measure using cups (packed in firmly). Avoid long strands of carrot in cake by holding the carrot perpendicular i.e. 90 degrees against the grater, rather than on an angle.
5. Cream Cheese - use block, not the soft spreadable cream cheese in tubs.
6. Icing sugar - called powdered sugar in the States. ?? Use soft icing sugar, not pure icing sugar.
7. Cake pan: DO NOT try this in one round cake pan, the depth of the batter is too great, the cake comes out too dense. Must be split between two pans, or 1 rectangle pan (Note 1 for size). Plenty of frosting for either. Cake is so moist, it's terrific as a single level cake without extra frosting sandwiched in between - and goes further too.
8. Storage - cake is so moist, the crumb actually gets semi "wet" if not stored in fridge when it's super hot and humid (ie Sydney summer!). Also frosting gets too soft. Slice fridge cold (cuts more neatly too), then let it come to room temp before serving (~5 min).
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