Carrot cake

Carrot cake (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Dear SOS: I'm hoping you can help me get a recipe. We went to the new Santa Monica restaurant Riva last weekend. Dinner was great, but I was particularly impressed by the carrot cake. Normally, carrot cake is dense, but this cake was light but still had that great carrot cake taste.

Rebecca Furman, Santa Monica

Dear Rebecca: This version of the classic cake incorporates no less than a pound of freshly grated carrots, making for a cake at once light in texture but rich with carrot flavor and bursting with color. Riva uses bread flour instead of cake flour to provide a firmer structure, offsetting all of those carrots. The cake is frosted with a fresh cream cheese frosting, which complements with a gentle tang.

Carrot cake

Total time: 1 1/2 hours, plus cooling and chilling times

Servings: 12 to 16

Note: Adapted from Riva. This makes 1 (8-inch) 2-layer cake.


4 eggs

2 cups (14 ounces) sugar, divided

3/4 cup vegetable oil

Scant 2 cups (9 ounces) bread flour

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 pound carrots, peeled and grated

1/3 cup dried currants or raisins

1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease 2 (8-inch) baking pans and line the bottoms of the pans with parchment paper. Grease the parchment paper and set the pans aside.