Homemade Carrot Cake with Lime Mascarpone Icing

If you've been keeping up you'll know that my last endeavor to try cooking at home, Melt-in-your-mouth shin stew, a recipe from Jamie Oliver's cookbook, wasn't so melt in your mouth.  Let me tell you something that's been troubling me, this Cook with Jamie cookbook I bought five maybe six months ago wasn't cheap, it's a total of 447 pages with lovely photographs, very informative and most importantly contains... actually I'm unsure how many recipes it contains, but the book is a total of 447 pages so you can imagine, right?

I've had the opportunity of trying out a few recipes from Cook with Jaime, including the Melt-in-your-mouth shin stew that was yes, not so melt-in-your-mouth, none of the recipes I've tried so far have turned out at all the way I had hoped.  I want to blame the book and maybe somewhere deep down I really do, but really I blame my inability to cook... and... the cookbook. The more recipes that go horribly wrong from Cook with Jaime the more I find myself to be determined to find a recipe that works.

So, as a result of my latest let-down from Cook with Jaime I decided to instead try a carrot cake recipe from Cook with Jaime, "I WILL find a recipe in this cookbook that works!"  My persistence to find a recipe that I like and that I can do is now the driving force.

So I went at it.

First, I outlined a piece of parchment to fit my 9" diameter Springform cake pan, which I bought today for specifically this carrot cake recipe.

I Cut-out the parchment and set it inside the cake pan, I lightly greased the top of the parchment paper as well as the inside sides of the pan, I did this very simply by putting half a tablespoon of  softened butter on a small pieces of folded paper towel and just greased away.

I prepped all my ingredients which included grated carrots, separated eggs, butter, sugar, walnuts, almonds, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, self-rising flower, baking soda and an orange.  Mr. Borscht laughs at my preps, but it makes everything I need to do much easier.

With the new 5-speed Cuisinart Brother Charlies recently got for me, I mixed, quite easily may I add and with enthusiasm I didn't know I could have for mixing,  the butter and the sugar until it was slightly pale and fluffy-ish.

I then beat in five egg yolks one by one and then beat in the orange juice and orange zest.  Then stirred in the flour and baking powder, once all that was incorporated I carefully added in the almonds, walnuts, spices and carrots.

That bowl of white stuff is actually egg whites and a pinch of salt that I whisked with my 5-speed blender until it was nice and stiff, well as stiff as egg whites can be.  I then took the beautiful egg whites and folded them into the carrot cake batter.

This is me folding in the egg whites into the carrot cake batter

I poured the carrot cake batter into the cake pan

The uncooked carrot cake batter didn't look very pretty but I had my fingers crossed that it might be more attractive once out of the oven.

And it was!

I let the cooked carrot cake cool down for ten minutes in the pan on a trivet and then took the cake out and let it cool completely (about 1 hour) on a cooling rack.  My new springform cake pan made taking the cake out and setting it on the cooling rack a piece of cake!  I simple popped off the sides and since I had greased the sides earlier it slipped off with ease.  I then set my cooling rack on top of the cake and carefully flipped it over, and WaLah!  You've got your cake on the cooling rack.

After one hour passed and the carrot cake was completely cooled down I made the icing for the carrot-cake, very easy!  Simply mix together cream cheese, mascarpone cheese, powdered sugar, lime zest and lime juice, this of course was made even more simple with my new handy dandy hand-mixer!  I've wanted a hand-mixer for so long and finally I have one, I'm sure my enthusiasm for this hand-mixer is annoying by now but just you try and make whipped cream or meringues by hand!

Once the icing was prepared I spread it over the carrot cake and then sprinkled chopped walnuts on top.

Next time I won't forget to ice the sides!

The carrot cake looked beautiful and tasted beautiful too... Though I think there could have been more carrot in it and less lime flavor in the icing, Mr. Borscht however, wished there was more of a lime flavor!  Mr. Borscht had two slices, in a row!  And this doesn't include the one he had  as a late night snack!  This makes me very happy, I think finally I've found a recipe in Cook with Jaime that works!  What next?!

Carrot cake with lime mascarpone icing from Cook With Jamie cookbook:


1 1/4 Cups softened unsalted butter
2 Cups light brown soft sugar (I used plain brown sugar because it's all I had and it was just fine)
5 Lg eggs separated (yolks and egg whites separated)
Zest & juice of 1 large orange
1 1/2 Cups sifted self-rising flour
1 Slightly heaped tsp of baking powder
1 Cup ground almonds (I bought sliced almonds & pulsed them in a grinder myself)
4 oz Chopped walnuts
1 Heaped tsp of ground cinnamon
Pinch of ground cloves
Pinch of ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp Ground ginger
10 oz of grated carrots (naturally they should be cleaned & peeled first)
Pinch of sea salt

For the Icing:

4 oz Mascarpone cheese
8 oz Full-fat cream cheese
1 Scant cup of sifted powdered sugar
Zest and juice of 2 limes (though I think zest and juice of 1 lime would have been just as good and would be suggested if a lighter lime flavor is wanted).


Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Grease and line a 9" square cake pan or 9" diam round cake pan with wax paper

Beat butter and sugar together until pale and fluffy

Beat in egg yolks one by one

Add the orange zest and juice

Stir in the sifted flour and baking powder

Add the ground almonds, walnuts, spices and grated carrots and mixed together well

In a separate bowl whisk the egg whites with a pinch of sea salt until stiff, then gently fold into the cake mix

Pour batter into the prepared cake pan and put in the oven and bake for 50 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean (until a toothpick when inserted into cake for 5 seconds comes out clean)

Once out of the oven, leave the cake to cool in the pan for 10 minutes and then turn out the cake onto a rack and cool for at least 1 hour.

Mix all the icing ingredients together and top the cake, then finish off with a sprinkle of walnuts.

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