Especially in this quarantine days, I’ve become fond of cakes, loaves and everything in between. There’s something special about making a loaf at home. Your whole house gets that amazing smell and a bite always cheers you up in the afternoon. I’ve been wanting to upload a carrot loaf for a while now and this time it also has apples in it.
Carrot Loaf vs Carrot Cake
For me, I like my carrot cake moister and slightly denser as well so that it can hold its structure in a nicer way because of the layers. For a carrot loaf, I prefer it lighter and fluffier in texture. On the other hand, there’s the frosting. I build my carrot cake using cream cheese buttercream. Butter solidifies when it’s cold, making the layers stay in place better. In this case though, I made a quick cream cheese frosting that is only applied on the top so there’s no need for butter. The frosting is optional but I love the taste of cream cheese on my carrot cakes/loaves.
Also, invite the apples
This carrot loaf also has apples in it! I love the combination of both flavours in the loaf along with cinnamon and pecans, I think it’s delicious. It also helps in case you have a couple of carrots and an apple at the back of your fridge about to die. But, if you prefer, you can use just carrots, replacing the amount of grated apples with more grated carrots. You can also make it apple only, but use only a total of 200g of apples instead of the 300g because it has a lot more liquid than carrots. Bear in mind that carrots and apples contain a lot of moisture in them so it takes a long time for the loaf to cook.
For the loaf
- 100 g unsalted butter at room temperature
- 180 g brown sugar
- 30 g vegetable oil
- 2 eggs
- 120 ml milk
- 150 g peeled and grated carrots
- 150 g peeled and grated apples
- 50 g pecans chopped and toasted
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 280 g all-purpose flour
- 1½ tsp ground cinnamon
For the frosting (optional)
- 100 g cream cheese at room temperature
- 3 tbsp icing sugar
- 1 tbsp cream or milk
- 40 g pecans toasted and chopped
For the loaf
- Using a whisk or an electric mixer, beat the butter with the oil and sugar until it's creamy and clearer in colour.
- Add the eggs, beat them together until it's incorporated and looks thick again. If you're using a stand mixer, stop every once in a while to scrape down the sides and base of the bowl with a spatula.
- Add the carrots, apples, pecans and milk and give them a quick mix. Don't worry, the batter will look split.
- Add the flour, cinnamon, baking powder, salt and mix. If you're using an electric mixer make sure to mix just enough. If you do it too much, the loaf could turn out tough.
- Pour the batter into a pan prepared with baking paper or greased and floured.
- Bake the loaf in a preheated oven at 180°C/350°F for 45 min – 1 hour and 15 minutes. If you have an electric oven with top and bottom heat, at the 30-minute mark check if the top is already golden enough. If it is, switch to bottom heat only for the rest of the cooking process. To know if it's ready, insert a knife at the centre. It's ready when it comes out clean.
- Once cold, unmould. Let it cool down completely before applying the frosting.
For the frosting
- Mix the cream cheese, sugar, cream and spread it on the loaf. Finish it off with chopped pecans.