I LOVE to cook.
(That doesn't mean I am good at it or anything) But what I really love, is to bake. If I could I would stay home and bake delicious creations every single day forever for the rest of my life. Really.
But the truth is I would probably eat myself to death if that happened because everything I bake ends up in my mouth. I married someone who doesn't care for sweets. I don't know where he came from. Although he does like chocolate so I do take advantage of that as much as possible ;) So as much as I would love a homemade cake in my house at all times, I only allow myself to bake one each year for my birthday. And then I allow myself to eat it three times a day for an entire week until it's all gone. Really.
For my birthday last week I made my all time favorite cake recipe. I don't know what it is, but carrot cake beats every other cake in the book for me. If I were given a line up of cakes I would pick the carrot every time. I know some people aren't a fan because it's full of carrots obviously, and chunks of other things, and some may think its similar to a fruit cake (although I don't actually know what is in a fruit cake.) But I tell you what, this cake may change your minds. It has a very special secret ingredient, is super moist and is covered in cream cheese frosting. And no one can tell me they don't like cream cheese frosting!
- 2 C. all purpose flour
- 2 tsp. baking soda
- 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 3 eggs
- 3/4 C. buttermilk
- 3/4 vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 C. white sugar
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 C. shredded carrots
- 1 C. flaked coconut
- 1 (8 oz.) can crushed pineapple with juices ----> SECRET INGREDIENT! Don't skip!
- 1/2 C. chopped walnuts (optional)
- 1/2 C. raisins (optional)
Preheat oven to 350. Line 2 round cake pans with parchment paper, then grease and flour. (PAM with flour is the best!)
In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Set aside.
In the bowl of a mixer, combine eggs, buttermilk, oil, sugar and vanilla. Mix well then gradually add the flour mixture until well combined.
In another medium bowl, combine shredded carrots, coconut, walnuts, pineapple and raisins.
Gently add carrot mixture to the batter and fold in well. Pour evenly into the 2 prepared cake pans. I measure out a cup at a time to distribute evenly. Paula Deen tip ;)
Bake for about 30-35 minutes. I always test cakes with a toothpick until it comes out clean. Let the cakes cool completely, then assemble and frost with cream cheese icing. (look below!)
Basic cream cheese frosting:
- 1 stick butter softened
- 1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese softened
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2-3 C. powdered sugar
Beat butter and cream cheese until well blended. Then add vanilla and powdered sugar one cup at a time until smooth.
He took his job as frosting maker very seriously. He would say "more vanilla" or "more sugar" haha. I think he just likes to turn the mixer on and off honestly.
And now for the candle reveal...
Hahaha! There it it is. 27...get it?
I bought the 2 at Target but they were out of 7's so I thought I would just be resourceful. Bad idea. But it's not what's on top that matters, it's what's inside ;) Also another tip, if the frosting isn't laying smooth, which sometimes looks cool but sometimes just frustrates me, I toast coconut and cover the outside. Problem solved!