This was a recipe originally from Taste of Home that I found so long ago, I had it written down on a recipe card.
You know, not printed up on a computer or anything like that. Just hand written. Straight out of magazine I probably borrowed from my mom.
Its a great cake, a favorite among cake eaters, easy to whip up and-did I mention?- its got carrots so fiber, right? And pineapple! And nuts! Heck, this is practically a breakfast food, probably better for you than a bowl of cereal!
I print it here, now, just for you. So you can make your basic and delicious and much requested carrot cake.
- 2 cups flour (all purpose, or 1/2 whole wheat, spelt, Einkorn, etc.
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 1/2 cup oil
- 4 eggs
- 1 8 oz can crushed pineapple
- 2 cups grated carrots (while a box grater will do, a food processor will grate those puppies in seconds.Okay, not puppies maybe. But I was so enjoying how fast they grated, I almost grated the whole bag. You only need a few carrots)
- 1/2 cup chopped nuts
Preheat the oven to 350.
With a whisk, and using a large mixing bowl, mix together the dry ingredients, which are the first 5 of the list. Not the sugar. Thats actually considered a wet ingredient.
Now add the sugar, oil and eggs and mix well. (Yep, the wet ingredients). I like to use a Danish whisk but, whatever you use, just mix until there are no dry streaks of flour and it is a nice thick homogeneous batter. I wouldn’t use an electric hand mixer. It might over mix.
Stir in grated carrots, pineapple and nuts, if using. (Or you could use raisins I suppose)
Pour into either a 9 x 13 baking pan (the easy option) or 3 round 8″ pans that you prepared by greasing and perhaps, laying cut parchment paper rounds into the bottom of.
Bake 35-40 minutes for rounds or longer for 9 x 13.(Isn’t there a name for that pan? It’s always “9 x 13”.) It should be golden brown on top, spring back when gently pressed in the middle and a straw or skewer poked into it should come out pretty dry, with just a crumb or two. (this is not my area of expertise. Too often I am just so sure the cake it done, only to have it slowly sink in the middle as it cools, my heart sinking with it.) You don’t want the cake over done and dry, but luckily that is hard to do with this cake, due to juicy pineapple and carrots.
Now for the cream cheese frosting:
- 1/2 cup (1 cube) butter
- 1-8 oz package of cream cheese
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 lb powdered sugar.
This time use an electric hand blender or mixer. Mix your butter, cheese and vanilla until well blended and soft. Add in the powdered sugar gradually, scoops at a time, beating vigorously. Frost cake as desired! I sometimes add chopped walnuts either around the sides or across the top, using a decorator tip to put little swirly-doo’s on the edges and bottom of a round cake.
My grandma worked in a grocery store bakery when I was little. She wore the cutest little Dutch uniform. One of my favorite memories was her bringing home a chocolate cake with walnuts plastered to its outsides. I think it was for my birthday, although I remember having it more than once. My memory is not so great that I would remember one cake. This was a thing. A kind of tradition for a while. Maybe other birthdays as well. Loved that cake! Which is kind of funny because my mom used to say that my favorite cake when I was little was angel food cake, yet I have no memories of that. In fact I remember how surprised I was when she told me this. How could I have this favorite food and have no memories of it? Or was she thinking of my brother or sister? Who knows.
But everyone loves carrot cake. They buy it because they think it’s too hard to make, but I just showed you how really, really easy it is. So now go for it