Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Sami's Cake
Sami's Cake

This is a very basic carrot cake iced with a cream cheese frosting which I used for the “white cake” I wrote about in my last post.  I tweaked the recipe to my taste and think this will be my keeper recipe.  I just love this cake for the spice, the moistness, the crunch  of the nuts and the fact that it actually has some vegetable in it.  That fact kind of fools me into thinking this is a healthy cake.  You have to admit, it is healthier than a butter pound cake.

This is half the recipe of one I found online months ago.  It makes a single layer 9-inch cake that’s just about the right size.

3 cups finely grated carrots (you can freeze any leftovers for the next cake)

1/2 c. dark brown sugar

1/2 c. raisins/currants or dried cranberries

2 eggs (always large for baking)

3/4 c. granulated sugar

1/2 c. vegetable oil

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 c. crushed pineapples, well-drained

1 1/2 c. all purpose flour

3/4 tsps. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

2 1/2 tsps. ground cinnamon

1 tsp. allspice

1/2 c. chopped walnuts (don’t chop too finely so you get some crunch)

Combine grated carrots and brown sugar in a bowl and set aside for 60 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease and flour a 9-inch round cake pan.

Sift and combine the flour, baking soda, salt and spices in a bowl.

In a larger bowl, beat the eggs until light.  Gradually beat in the sugar, oil and vanilla.  Stir in the pineapple.  Add the flour mixture and stir until it’s all absorbed.  Be gentle at this point. Now add the carrots and brown sugar mix, then the walnuts and stir till well-combined.

Pour into your prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Allow the cake to cool for about 15 minutes before removing from the pan.

Cool the cake completely.  Give it a few hours to make sure, it’s worth it.  Or stick it covered in the refrigerator overnight.  Frost with cream cheese frosting.

TIP:  I prepare the frosting a day or two before I use it.  The texture comes out smoother.  My theory is,  the local confectioner’s sugar I get here isn’t all that fine even after beating the frosting longer than usual.  Leaving the frosting covered in the refrigerator for a couple of days before use does the trick.

Cream Cheese Frosting:

1 package softened cream cheese (I use Philadelphia, there’s more in a pack than the local brand)

1/3 c. butter, softened

1 tbsp. milk

1 tsp. vanilla

2 c. powdered sugar

Combine first 4 ingredients in a mixer and beat until creamy.  Add sugar and beat until smooth, about 5-6 minutes.  Be careful not to let the sugar dust get in your face!