Spiced Carrot Cake

I’m not entirely sure what enticed me to bake tonight but I’m sure it all started with a craving for something sweet. 

I decided to try a spiced carrot cake to change things up from my pedestrian carrot cake. :)

Yes, I took a photo of my NEW measuring cups. You might be thinking "wow, what a nerd!" And you'd be right. :D They've got a mini lip that's handy for pouring things out. And they're from Chelsea Market in NYC so bam!  
Carmen = happy

Went on a late evening trek to walmart for brown sugar, it took me awhile to walk. Got all my ingredients now and I’m ready to go! 

Spiced Carrot Cake (from MarthaStewartLiving)
2½ cup flour
1 tsp     baking powder
1 tsp     baking soda
1 tsp     ground cinnamon
¾ tsp    coarse salt
½ tsp    ground ginger
¼ tsp    ground nutmeg
1 cup  unsalted butter, room temp
1 cup  packed light-brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
3         large eggs
2 tsp   pure vanilla extract
½ cup milk
1 lb     carrot, shredded (2 ¾ cup)

There is an additional part to the recipe outlining a cream cheese frosting with pecans. However, I’m deathly allergic to pecans…plus I wanted a “light” cake so I skipped the frosting entirely. (check out the other time I used carrots in my mini carrot cupcakes! :D)

  1. Preheat oven to 350oF. Butter 3 9-inch round cake pans
  2. Line bottoms with parchment paper, butter again.
  3. Dust with flour, shake off excess.
  4. In a large bowl, mix flour, baking powder / soda, cinnamon, salt, ginger, nutmeg.
  5. In a large bowl, beat butter & sugars on medium speed until pale & fluffy, 4 min.
  6. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition, 3 min.
  7. Add vanilla, milk, carrots; beat until well combined, 2 min.
  8. Reduce speed to low. Slowly mix in flour mixture.
  9. Divide batter evenly amongst pans.
  10. Bake, rotating pans halfway through, until golden brown, 30 min.
  11. Let cool in pans on wire rack for 15 min. Run a knife around edges of cake to loosen it, turn out cakes onto the rack.
  12. Turn right side up, cool completely.
  13. If frosting: trim rounded top of 2 cakes using a serrated knife.
  14. Place one trimmed cake, cut side up, on serving platter.
  15. Spread 1 cup of frosting over the cake. Top with 2nd trimmed cake, cut side down.
  16. Spread 1 cup of frosting over cake. Top with last cake.
  17. Spread remaining frosting over top and sides.
  18. Refrigerate 1 hour (or up to 1 day, covered) before serving.

I began by sifting all the dry ingredients together first. 

Next, as is common in cupcake and frosting/buttercream procedures (see step 4), comes the creaming of the butter & sugar. Always gratifying to see the lightness you get in the end!

Remember, eggs are added in one at a time! This ensures consistency in the texture and smooth blending. Then the other liquids go in. 

And of course the carrots! I used the food processor attachment for my blender (which proves to be of great use almost daily!) and got my carrot bits pretty quickly. Flour mixture takes a trip into the batter. 

And then it’s off to the pans and oven! I chose to make 2/3 of the recipe so that amounted to one overflowing 9-inch cake pan and 4 ramekins. 
Hot water bath for the ramekins just because I'm paranoid like that! :D

Nice colour on the cake. It smelt so good I wanted to eat it right then and there! 

Instead, I waited until the next morning when everyone was awake. It came as a great surprise to me that although I left it uncovered, the cake still remained incredibly moist. 

The spiced carrot cake was definitely a hit. No doubt a recipe to keep for future use. :D There was just the right amount of spice and just so you know, it’ll still tastes great even if you reduce the amount of sugar by a couple of tbsp. 
Dusted with icing sugar and garnished with some freshly chopped sticks of carrot. Yeah I really didn't want to frost it.

4.5 out of 5 NOMs