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Friday, June 12, 2009

Carrot Cake

Sabrina and my daughter Elizabeth grew up together since grade school and even though Sabrina decided to pursue her studies and eventually a career on the Canadian west coast they still share a special friendship. I’m still sharing a very unique friendship with Sabrina myself.

I sometimes feel that I’ve actually grown up along with them.

Sabrina loves carrot cake and we would always bake one for her on her birthday. Since moving away, it hasn’t been often that she's been able to come back home for her birthday so we made sure to bake a carrot cake whenever she was in town.

A few years back Elizabeth had the "great" idea to mail Sabrina her cake. And so this little cake’s adventure began.

Having to divulge the contents and monetary value of the parcel to Canada Post was just the beginning. The cake then took the scenic route out west for about a week. A further delay in being picked up from the post office meant a few extra days hanging around in the mail room.

You must believe that this cake keeps very well and certainly must mellow with age because Sabrina confesses that the cake was so good she ate it all herself!

Since mailing another cake for Sabrina’s next birthday will definitely not be an option she will just have to come home to get it!

So here’s to many more years of friendship Sabrina…and carrot cake of course!

Carrot Cake

1 1/3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup vegetable oil
3 extra large eggs
2 cups peeled grated carrots
  1. In a medium size bowl sift together flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda and cinnamon and set aside.
  2. In a separate bowl beat sugar, oil and eggs until light and fluffy.
  3. Add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture and stir until well combined. Fold in carrots.
  4. Pour batter into a greased 13x9x2 inch pan and bake in a preheated 300 degree F oven for 50 to 60 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
  5. Cool in pan on wire rack then frost if desired with cream cheese frosting.
Cream Cheese Frosting
  1. Beat together 4 ounces (1/2 of 8 ounce package) softened cream cheese and ¼ cup softened butter.
  2. Add 2 ¼ cups confectioners sugar and 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
  3. Beat with electric mixer until it reaches spreading consistency.
Notes, Tips and Suggestions
  • For obvious reasons the cake we mailed was not frosted. The picture above is basically how we dressed it up. Instead of baking in a rectangular pan it was baked in an 8 inch spring form pan. ( bake for approximately 40 to 45 minutes)
  • I confess… the truth is I dared to decrease the quantity of oil used in the recipe by ¼ cup. I only used ¾ cups and it paid off. The results were excellent and the cake was less oily. This recipe will also make between 12 to14 cupcakes.
  • Adding ½ cup either walnuts or coconut makes a tasty variation.
  • When a recipe calls for folding or stirring in the dry ingredients make sure to beat the wet ingredients until fluffy and light. This is the only time you will be able to incorporate air into the mixture.
Thinking Outside of the Pan…..Again

I couldn’t resist, my curiosity got the better of me so I decided to bake this same carrot cake recipe into a cake roll. The results were excellent.

When I rolled the cake it did develop a few more cracks than the Chiffon Cake roll but nothing that couldn’t be camouflaged with a little coconut.

About the filling, since cream cheese and carrot cake make a great combination I decided to use a recipe for no bake cheese cake. I made the filling and spread it in the roll instead of into a crust.

Follow the method for preparation from the Chiffon Cake Roll recipe previously posted. Instead of sifting confectioners sugar over the tea towel sprinkle very finely grated unsweetened coconut instead.

It’s a good thing I took a picture because not one shred of evidence remains that this cake roll ever existed. Yes it’s that good!

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