Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Legendary Carrot Cake

It's a drop dead beautiful morning here at 1410. I don't think anything I could write would add to the photos. I have spent the morning mis-baking a Legendary Carrot Cake for Lorna's book club this evening. At one time the cake was referred to as Ordinary Carrot Cake, but that was before "the ant incident". To the best of my memory, Lorna's sister Joy had baked the cake a couple of days ahead of time. As she finished frosting it the day of the soirée, she noticed it was covered with tiny ants. Thinking fast she put it in the freezer and checked it periodically. The ants, agitated by the cold, climbed up through the frosting where Joy picked them off one at a time. The cake was served with no mention of the potential protein additive, or if anyone noticed they were too courteous to mention it.

My cake today doesn't have ants, but it isn't going well. I have baked it a number of times, yet continue to invent new ways to screw it up. My best hope is that by the time they get to the cake they will have had enough wine so anything will pass muster. More rum in the frosting might help, though I suspect there may be limits to that.

Legendary Carrot Cake

Cream 2 C sugar & 1 1/2 C. oil (if you add rum to the mix, cut back on the oil)

Add 4 eggs (1 at a time) on high speed (I have no idea why it is supposed to be "high speed". "Slow speed" has proven to be a neater option)

Add 1 can (drained) crushed pineapple

Sift and add dry ingredients:

2 C flour (I like unbleached because it looks more like food.)

2 t. soda

1 t. cinnamon (or cumin, ginger, nutmeg, or whatever, though I haven't tried cayenne...yet. and I think a little more is better.)

1/2 t. salt

Fold in

2 C shredded carrots,

1 C chopped nuts (usually walnuts)

Handful or two of raisins or dried fruit (is there a good abbreviation for handful? If so, could also apply to chopped nuts)

Bake at 350 º in a greased & floured 9 x 13 pan

Frosting (whip and spread on cool cake - scatter any leftover chopped nuts on top)

8 oz. package of cream cheese

½ C. margarine or butter (margarine whips better, but we usually stock Hope Creamery butter. Maybe melt it a little?)

2 C. powdered sugar

Rum to taste. You can add quite a lot of rum to the cake, but you get more bang for the buck in the frosting, but BE CAREFUL!

Note: I have tweaked the recipe to more reflect reality. I just tasted the baker's corner. No matter how bad you screw up things, if there is enough good stuff in it, it'll taste good...as long as you don't burn it. - Berg's law.


Margadant said...

Thank you for the formula. I have been getting a carrot cake fix from local coffee shops every couple years or so. Not too many knowledgeable bakers left in homes any more that can provide this delight for social occasions. I will lend my hand to screwing the final product up.

Justine Valinotti said...

Another thing for me to practice until I get it right. ;-)