Candied beetroot roses are used to adorn this Beetroot cake, perfect for valentines day.
The sponge is made with grated beetroot, stem ginger, citrus and ground roasted hazelnuts. Its packed with flavour.Jump to Recipe
The texture is similar to a carrot cake, every one that tried it gave it the thumbs up.
If you love carrot cake then i posted a lovely zesty one last week here.
Even the fussiest of eaters enjoyed it, so i bet even if you are not keen on beetroot then you will too.
The beetroot was left to sit with the lemon, orange and stem ginger while i prepared the rest of the ingredients. So it absorbed some of the flavours.
I wanted the beetroot more for colour than flavour so that is why i paired it with the spices and citrus.
The sponge was so beautifully soft and tender.
To add a pink tint to the frosting i added some of the left over syrup from making the candied beetroot roses.
I make a lot of cakes, but i think this one has to be in my top 5.
Plus the pink candied beetroot roses are a fun extra.
Edible cake decorations
I wanted to make a cake with decorations that are completely edible with nothing artificial. The beetroot flowers seemed like the perfect choice for this beetroot cake.
They look like dried rose petals, which i could have used, but i dont think that they are necessarily very tasty.
The beetroot roses are sweet because they are boiled in syrup with a little stem ginger and then dried out in the oven until crispy.
I used both pink beetroots and candy striped beetroot to give different shades of pink.
The candy striped beets looked very pale on their own so i boiled them together with the bright pink beetroot to add more colour.
Layering the Beetroot cake
The recipe makes three thin layers that are sandwiched on top of one another with mascarpone, cream and a little powdered sugar and some of the syrup from the beetroot.
I opted for a naked cake style, rather than fully frosted this time.
Beetroot cake recipe
Beetroot stem ginger and citrus cake
- 3 shallow 7 or 8 inch layer cake tins
- baking paper
- 150 grams grated beetroot (use raw beetroots)
- zest of one small lemon
- zest of one clementine
- juice of half a small lemon
- juice from one clementine
- thumb sized piece of ginger grated
- 250 ml vegetable oil (1 cup)
- 200 grams caster sugar
- 85 grams soft light brown sugar
- 4 eggs
- 275 grams plain flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 60 grams roasted hazelnuts, finely ground
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 250 grams mascarpone cream cheese
- 250 ml double cream
- 5 tbsp powdered sugar Add more if you like it sweeter
- 4 tbsp syrup from making beetroot roses (see post) Add more for a darker shade for pink
For the sponge
Preheat the oven to 160c fan
grease and line three shallow 7 or 8 inch baking tins
Peel and finely grate the beetroot, i do this is a food processor with the fine grater attachment, (to save my hands from turning pink) if you don't have a food processor you might want to wear gloves, i hold the beetroot with a cloth while i peel them also.
Weigh out 150g of the grated beetroot in a bowl, there was about 1 tbsp of the juice from grating them in the food processor, unlike other veg cakes, where i strain any liquid away i kept the juice for this one. Grate the lemon and clementine zest into the bowl with the beetroot and add the juice (juice from half the lemon and juice from the whole clementine) , then peel the skin off the stem ginger and grate into the same bowl. Mix together and let sit.
Whisk the oil and sugar together for a few minutes until pale and creamy, then add the eggs one at a time while whisking at high speed until the mixture is thick and pale.
In a bowl mix together the flour, baking powder, dried spices and a pinch of salt, add the ground roasted hazelnuts then add into the bowl with the oil/eggs and fold in with a spatula.
Finally fold in the beetroot mixture.
Pour the batter evenly between the three tins then bake on the middle shelf for 20 to 22 minutes. (After 10 minutes i moved the tins around to make sure they baked evenly) to check the cakes are baked, insert a knife into the centre and it should come out clean.
Once baked leave the cakes to cool in the tins for 15 minutes, then carefully peel the paper off and place them on a cooling rack until completely cool. (if not assembling right away then wrap in plastic wrap until needed to keep fresh)
For the frosting
Add the cream, mascarpone and powdered sugar and whisk until soft peaks, then add the syrup, mix and taste. If you want more sugar or colour add it now then mix again. ( i like my frosting not too sweet so i don't add a lot of sugar, you might want to add more)
Place one of the cake layers on a serving plate or cake stand and add some of the frosting, then spread out and add the next sponge layer, then add some more frosting and top with the final layer. Add the remaining frosting on top and spread to cover the top and sides. Scrape off any excess to look like a naked cake.
Candied beetroot roses
I was thinking about making a tree with candied beetroot blossoms, then i saw these beetroot roses on pinterest and it inspired me.
They are a great decoration for valentines day.
I used a mix of bright pink and candy striped beetroots.
The syrup for the beets seemed like a great way of adding flavour so i added some stem ginger.
To make the syrup
- 150g caster sugar
- 300ml water
- small chunk of stem ginger
Making the roses
Wash the beetroots so there is no dirt left on them.
Using a mandolin slicer on the thinnest setting you can and slice the beetroots. Wear gloves so you dont stain your hands.
I used half a medium pink beetroot and half a large candied stripe one.
You can slice as much as you want depending on how many roses and petals you want.
Add the syrup ingredients in a pan and stir until the sugar has dissolved.
Simmer until it starts to thicken and become syrup like.
Add the slices of beetroot and simmer for 10 minutes or until they become soft and almost translucent.
I did mine in two batches so there was enough room and used the same syrup for the second batch.
If they are not really thin then you may need to simmer for 15 minutes.
Place a sieve over a bowl and strain the beets. Let cool a little and then peel them apart and place in a flat single layer to dry out a little.
I made a selection of shapes with them, roses, ruffles and petals.
For the roses i cut some of the beetroot in half and rolled it up.
Then i rolled one or two more long strips around it. (The candy striped beetroot was really large and a great bumpy shape).
I used a tooth pick to hold them together.
Then place them on a lined baking tray ready to dry out in the oven, see below.
This tutorial here has great step by step instructions and photos if mine doesnt make sense.
For the ruffles i cut the beetroot into half moons and made fan shapes with them and used a tooth pick to hold the end together.
Tear some of the beetroot into small petals and place on a tray for the plain petals.
Drying them out
Cooking different sizes and shapes will mean that the baking times differ.
Heat the oven to 100c and place them all in for 20 minutes, then turn the petals and fan shaped flowers over to dry out the other side and return for 20 minutes.
Then remove the tooth picks from all the flowers and fans and flip the petals over again, after 10 more minutes the small petals and fans may be ready.
The roses will take about 20 minutes more until they are crisp.
Once the roses are firm, turn them over and return them back to the oven to make sure the underside has dried out for 10 to 20 minutes.
Once they are all crispy, turn the oven off.
Leave the door open for 5 minutes and place the trays with all the petals roses ect on back in the oven with the door ajar for 10 minutes, then close the door and leave them for 20 minutes.
Making the chocolate stems
This is optional but i thought they would look beautiful wrapped around the cake, so i made some chocolate stems.
Melt 100 grams of chocolate in a bowl over a pan of boiling water.
Pour the melted chocolate into a piping bag and let cool for a few moments.
Cut a very small opening in the piping bag.
Pipe stems and leaves with the chocolate on to some non stick baking paper, then add the candied beetroot so it looks like flowers and blossoms.
I also added a few thyme leaves.
Leave to set hard then gently remove from the paper and stick onto the cake.
To add a more 3d element i placed some objects under the paper as it cooled so it was not flat.