I eat dessert every night. Yes, every single night. Sometimes it’s just a couple of store bought cookies, others the latest order from a bakery that actually ships, yet others some treat I’ve made, whether a humble cookie or a fancy layer cake. No matter what it is, the last thing I put in my mouth each day is something sweet. Every once in awhile even with a freezer full of homemade treats and a pantry full of store bought ones, I still crave something different.
There are the times when I want something easy to make too. Not too many measuring cups and spoons, pans and mixers to wash up after baking whether it’s Mom or me standing at the sink. In addition, there’s always the appeal of something warm out of the oven, or microwave as it may be. It’s tough to time cookies or bars right out of the oven while prepping and eating dinner, and I hate the thought of my hard work falling apart from being too hot to hold its shape. But there’s one dessert that solves all of these problems.
I saw Richard Blais (one of my favorite chefs) make a microwave angel food cake on Iron Chef America and always wanted to try it even though angel food cake is not one of my favorite desserts. When I saw Michael Symon make this version on The Chew, I knew I had to make it as soon as possible. I love carrot cake, in addition to the idea of warm cake in an individual serving.
With starting the blog, all kinds of baking, and life, a fair amount of time passed, but now I finally got around to making this dessert. It surpassed all expectations I had. The cakes are so easy to make. I put the ingredients together before dinner, then put the fully mixed batter into the refrigerator where I held it for about an hour and a half, which worked out fine. Very few dishes were dirtied, and the ingredients used are ones that most people have on hand. I used almond milk because I had it open from another recipe (a delicious cranberry muffin – stay tuned for that one), but you could use any kind of milk you have on hand. I’ve been using Blue Diamond Original Unsweetened Almond Milk and have found it works great. I also substituted regular raisins for golden raisins.
I upped the spices a little, giving the cake a really good flavor, but the orange zest is the unsung hero. It really stood out and brightened the flavor of the entire cake. Cara Cara oranges were in the house, but any orange would work, just make sure to add the zest of some kind of orange.
The cake is super moist and pretty light. It is quite a bit spongier than any traditional cake, but that’s how it’s supposed to turn out. The raisins are plump and add a great sweetness; I left the pecans in rather large pieces, and they add great crunch and flavor (toasting them would be nice if you want to go for the extra effort). The cake stayed nice and warm all the way through the eating process. Who doesn’t love warm cake? The portion size was perfect; definitely big enough for me to feel like I had a nice dessert, but not huge. The light texture keeps the portion from feeling too big as well.
This has become one of my favorite recipes, and that’s saying a lot. It’s easy, yummy, doesn’t use any strange ingredients, and can be made on a whim. Give it a try and enjoy! I know you’ll love it.
- 6 tablespoons cake flour (non-self rising)
- 3 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
- ¼ cup almond milk (any milk will work fine)
- 1 egg separated
- 2 carrots, grated
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons raisins
- 2 tablespoons pecans, coarsely chopped
- Zest of 1 orange
- In a small bowl whip the egg white with a fork until foamy and light (just for a minute or two). In a medium bowl mix flour, sugar, baking soda, spices, milk, egg yolk, egg white, carrots, oil, raisins, pecans, and orange zest together using a spoon or spatula until the mixture is homogeneous.
- Once the batter is made it will be quite thin and can be refrigerated for up to 2 hours before cooking. When ready to make the cakes, stir the batter once again, just to make sure everything is incorporated. Divide the batter equally among 2 coffee mugs (make sure they are not too small, the cake puffs up a lot). Microwave on high for 2-2 ½ minutes (I found 2 ¼ minutes was perfect).
- Enjoy the cakes while warm. They may be garnished with sour cream, ice cream, whipped cream, or enjoyed just as they are.