Eggless whole wheat carrot pineapple cake – Sunflower patch

The recent Vegan Orange pineapple cake was a super hit home, all my boys loved it, never knew they would like pineapple in their cakes. So, last month while grocery shopping when i  found an offer on Delmonte tinned pineapples, i immediately picked a can. I knew i m going to make a cake, i thought why not add the carrots too, we had an occassion to celebrate in the first week of April, so i made this cake that day. Initially i wanted to leave it simple, but then i love the Sunflower song from the Spiderverse movie, took that as an inspiration and i tried my best to make it look like a sunflower patch. I love the final look and my boys loved it too. 

Here it is, a carrot pineapple cake, beautifully spiced with cardamom, cloves and cinnamon. The cake tastes delicious with this wonderful buttercream. A beautiful centerpiece to your party and a lovely cake for any celebration.

Design Inspired from here
2.5 cups of whole wheat flour

2tsp baking powder 
1 tsp baking soda
1 heaped cup sugar
1/2 cup chopped walnuts 
1 cup butter milk
2 tbsp flaxseed meal mixed with 1/4 cup warm water
350 grams pineapple (drained from 570 grams tin, reserve the liquid)
1 tsp cinnamon
2-3 nos cloves 
4 nos cardamom pods,seeds removed 
  • Drain the pineapple from the can and let it be in the colander until use.
  • Preheat the oven to 170C. Grease the pans with oil and lay it with parchment. I have used  2, 6 inch round pans and 1, 5 inch pan. 
  • Prepare the flax eggs, in a bowl, mix the flax-meal with water and keep aside to coagulate.
  • Pound the cardamom seeds and cloves together. Grate the carrots and keep it ready.  Make sure all the ingredients are at room temperature.
  • In a large bowl, take together flour, baking powder and baking soda. Whisk well to combine.
  • To this add chopped walnuts, shredded carrots and the spice powders, whisk again to get a uniform mixture. To this add the drained pineapple bits. If the pineapple pieces are bit chunky, chop them into manageable pieces and add it to the dry flour mix and whisk again to get a uniform mix.
  • In another bowl, take milk, tip in the oil, flax eggs. Using a electric hand mixer , whisk it all together into one smooth liquid.
  • To this wet mix now add the dry flour mix in 3 batches and using the electric mixer/spatula, mix in all the flour into the liquid.
  • If you feel the batter is too thick add 1/4 cup warm water to this and make it to a pourable batter.Divide the batter into 3 prepared pans. Tap the pans twice to release any air trapped, pop it into oven.
  • Bake it in the preheated oven for 45-50 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean.
  • Once done, remove the cake out of the oven, let it sit in the pan for 5-10 minutes to cool a bit, then carefully remove the cake onto a wired cooling rack.Once it is down to room temperature, you can slice and enjoy it.
  • Since I planned to frost it, I cling wrapped it and popped it into the fridge until I m ready to frost it.

Butter cream frosting 

200 grams butter, i used amul unsalted @ room temperature
4 cups of icing sugar
1 tbsp milk
Colors as needed, i have used yellow for the sunflower and green for the leaves.
oreo crumble for the sunflower center

  • Take butter and whisk it with an electric beater, until light and fluffy. Now add sugar 1 cup at a time and whisk well. 
  • The buttercream must be smooth and spreadable, if it is too thick add another tsp of milk to it and whisk.
  • Once done, if  storing, cling wrap it well and refrigerate. I normally make the cream just before i frost my cakes.

To Frost & Fill the cake

  • Mix 3  tbsp of icing sugar with 1/4 cup of warm water and keep ready.
  • Take a round cake board, add a blob of buttercream  to the center and place one round cake in the middle. This blob makes sure, that the cake stays put on the board without sliding.
  • Spread half of the sugar solution on top of the sponge, this keeps the cake soft. Add a thick layer of  frosting on top. Spread it to cover the entire cake surface, do not forget the edges.
  • Now stack the second cake on top of this with its bottom facing the top. Spread the sugar solution on top of the cake.
  • Now add a thick layer of yellow buttercream on top and crumb coat the sides with buttercream. Place the cake in the refrigerator for 10 minutes for the crumb coat to set.
  • Once set, add thick layers of  buttercream on top and using a offset spatuala smoothen it to set. 
  • Again refrigerate the cake for 10 minutes before adding any extra details. I took the remaining buttercream and took out 4 tbsp and colored it green for the leaves and the rest with yellow and orange to that sunflower yellow.

  • For piping the sunflower, i have used the leave nozzle, fit it in a disposable piping bag, fill the bag with yellow buttercream. I used a small shot glass as my lead, touched the top of the glass on the chilled cake, and piped around that circle to get my sunflower. 
  • I used oreo crumble to fill the center for the cake. I have used the small leaf nozzle for the leaves. Didn’t follow a particular pattern for the leaves, tried piping 3 for each flower to accentuate the yellow flower. Please check this video for further assitance.
  • Once done, refrigerate the cake for atleast 10-15 minutes for the design to set. The slice and enjoy.
  • If refrigerating the cake for long, make sure that the cake is out atleast 2 hours before you slice it.