Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Carrot Cake

I love carrot cake. I could eat it almost every day. That's exactly why I don't make it very often. So, carrot cake has become a "special occasion" cake in our house. Thankfully, my brother-in-law and my neighbor both love it so I have extra birthdays to use as an excuse to make it.

Surprisingly, it took me many years to find a carrot cake recipe that I really liked. Many recipes are too dry or are too much like a spice cake. I wanted a sweet, spicy cake that highlighted the carrot flavor. And let's not forget the most important part of carrot cake...the cream cheese frosting. The frosting on this cake is pretty standard but it pairs with the cake like peas and carrots (thank you Forrest Gump).

I had been using a carrot cake recipe that my mom had given me for quite some time and it was pretty good. I most often made it as cupcakes but I also made it as a sheet cake to bring in to parties at work. It was one of these occasions that a coworker and I were talking about recipes and she gave me this one. She said that this was a family recipe and was requested over and over again. She was not wrong. I get constant requests for this cake. It is moist and flavorful. It has just the right amount of spice and a delicate carrot taste that is brought out by the walnuts.

It is an easy recipe. I've made this one as cupcakes, sheet cakes, and a layer cake. It is very versatile and a crowd pleaser.

Carrot Cake
From Susannah Dunbar

3 Cups All Purpose Flour
1 Cup Sugar
1 Cup Brown Sugar
2 teaspoons Baking Soda
3 teaspoons Ground Cinnamon
2 teaspoons Salt
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
1 1/2 Cups Canola Oil
4 Large Eggs
3 teaspoons Vanilla
1 8 oz Can Crushed Pineapple, drained
2 1/2 Cups Grated Carrots
1 Cup Walnuts, chopped

Cream Cheese Frosting:
8 oz Cream Cheese, softened
1 Stick Butter, softened
16 oz Powdered Sugar (1 box)
2 teaspoons Vanilla
1 Cup Walnuts, chopped
Walnuts for garnish

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Liberally grease your baking pans (3-9 inch round cake pans, 1 sheet cake pan, 1 9x13 pan, 2 8x8 square pans, or 36 muffin cups) with cooking spray.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine all of the cake ingredients and mix well.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared cake pans.
  5. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.
  6. Cool on a wire rack.
  7. Once the cake is cooled, mix all of the frosting ingredients together.
  8. Whip the frosting until fluffy.
  9. Stack the cake layers with frosting in between each layer.
  10. Cover the entire cake with the remaining frosting.
  11. Sprinkle walnuts over the top and sides of the cake to garnish.

Yields: 16 Servings (from 3-9 inch pans)

No comments:

Post a Comment