I am re-publishing the following post because this is what my kitchen currently looks like.
With Easter coming I figure you could all use a great carrot cake recipe, and this one definitely fits the bill. I adapted The Faux Martha’s Carrot Cake With Brown Butter Cream Cheese Frosting to make it gluten free. The recipe was selected as The Huffington Post’s #1 carrot cake recipe last year and I have to agree with them. This lady can really make a carrot cake! And now you can too.
My first experiences with carrots are not stellar to say the least. My mother will be happy to tell anyone who will listen how she (and the kitchen for that matter) would end up completely covered in orange baby food. It would be everywhere, her shirt, her glasses, the kitchen walls. Apparently, it was quite the scene because she still brings it up 40 years later.
I have l long since made peace with the carrot. In fact, it is now one of my favorite vegetables. The key is the preparation. If you boil all the flavor (and frankly the vitamins) out of your vegetables, you can’t expect anyone to like them. You don’t need to be a picky eater to dislike boiled or steamed veggies, just possessing taste buds will do the trick.
Now while roasting or sauteing your veggies may be ideal for your meal, I am always concerned with dessert. And let’s face it, baking vegetables into a cake is always going to taste the best. It may be just an excuse to eat the cream cheese frosting or maybe a cake with more substance is more satisfying. Whatever the reason, people who like carrot cake really LOVE it.
30 minPrep Time
30 minCook Time
1 hrTotal Time
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup light brown sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
3/4 cup canola oil
1/3 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 pound carrots, finely grated (about 3 cups)
2/3 cup raisins
2/3 cup chopped walnuts
Adapted from16 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
16 tablespoons salted butter (2 sticks), at room temperature
4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups chopped walnuts
1 or 2 carrots
- Position the rack in the center of oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease andPut the raisins in a heatproof bowl and cover them with boiling water. Set aside.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, spices and sugars and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the eggs and whisk just enough to break them up.
- Add the oil, buttermilk, vanilla extract and carrots to the eggs. Whisk to combine.
- Add the flour mixture and whisk until thoroughly combined. Note: You have to be careful not to "over" mix when using wheat flour. If you activate too much gluten, your cake will be tough. However, over mixing is not an issue when you use gluten-free flours. There is no gluten to over activate!
- Strain the water from the raisins and fold the strained raisins and walnuts into the batter with a rubber spatula. Tip: View a video on Bake for 30-40 minutes until they are well risen and the cake has come away from the sides of the pan. If you press the cake lightly with your finger, it should spring back. Tip: If you are not sure if the cake is done, leave it a little longer. It is better to "over" bake a cake than "under" bake.
- Remove the pans from the oven and place them on cooling racks. Cool the layers in the pans for 10 minutes. Then invert them to remove the pans. Invert them again so they finish cooling right side up. Remove the parchment paper before frosting.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese and butter with an electric mixer on medium speed until combined and fluffy. Scrape down the bowl.
- Turn the mixer down to low speed and add the vanilla extract. Mix until combined. Scrape down the bowl.
- Gradually add the confectioner's sugar (1/2 cup at a time) and mix until combined. Scrape down the bowl.
- Turn the mixer to high speed and mix briefly until fluffy.
- Refrigerate the frosting for 20 to 30 minutes or until a spreadable consistency.
- Cover the sides of the frosted cake with the chopped walnuts.
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