A month ago, I told my friend Michelle that I wanted to make her a birthday sweet treat for us to enjoy on her birthday weekend. She told me she wanted Oreo cheesecake bars. Two weeks later, I asked Michelle if she still wanted the Oreo cheesecake bars for her birthday sweet treat. I can’t remember exactly what took place in the conversation but I am sure it went something along the lines of Michelle saying she would love anything I would make (because she is just that sweet) to her telling me that her mom used to make carrot cake as her birthday cake every year. Because I love Michelle so much and have never made a carrot cake, I accepted the challenge.
My friend Kelly recently made a carrot cake for her mother’s birthday so I asked her what recipe she used. She stated it was from her favorite recipe website, Allrecipes.com. I looked over the recipe and thought it was perfect.
Thursday night I set out to making this divine birthday sweet treat and didn’t quite realize what I got myself in to. The recipe wasn’t difficult, but be sure to give yourself enough time to grate the carrots and to wait until they are nice and ready. I have to say, it is well worth your time.
slightly adapted from Allrecipes.com
- 6 cups grated carrots
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup raisins
- 4 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups white sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 can crushed pineapple, drained
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
Grate 10-12 good size carrots until you get 6 cups. Place in a large mixing bowl. Using a cheese cloth or paper towel, squeeze out as much excess water as you can from the carrots. Add the brown sugar and mix around with spoon. Set aside for 30 minutes. You will notice the brown sugar and carrots producing a syrup.
In a medium sized bowl add raisins and 1/2 cup warm water. (This helps them be nice a plump in the cake and not hard). Set aside 30 minutes.
Half way into your carrots and raisins being done, pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
In a large bowl, whip the eggs until light and fluffy with whisk. This took me about 2 minutes.
Slowly add in white sugar
In a medium bowl combine flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Mix well.
Add these dry ingredients into wet ingredients. Combine until it becomes a thick batter.
Add pineapple, carrots, raisins and walnuts to mix. Stir carrot cake batter until combined well.
Grease and flour 13×9 inch cake pan. Pour batter into pan and bake in oven for 45-50 minutes. To check for doneness, insert butter knife in center and it is done when the knife comes out clean. Let the cake cool completely in the pan until removing from pan or frosting.
Due to traveling to St. Paul with this cake, I decided not to frost it until I got there. With all of the hustle and bustle of seeing friends, I didn’t get a chance to make the frosting until right before we ate the cake on Saturday night. I made a simple cream cheese frosting from Allrecipes.com.
The fresh frosting was not the prettiest, but it sure was delicious.
My friend Amy wanted to be in a picture on my blog 🙂
I attempted to color some of the frosting orange, however it came out a peachy color. I then attempted to pipe it on the cake using a ziplock bag. I have no clue what I was thinking when I wrote “30” in huge numbers but I am sure the 1/2 bottle of wine Michelle and I shared with dinner didn’t help that thought process.
Everyone loved the cake. It was super soft, moist and a perfect combination of carrot, cinnamon-y, nutty, rich flavors.
Michelle was able to have yet another carrot cake for her birthday, and blow out her candles making her 30th year wish!
What was your favorite birthday sweet treat growing up?
Mine was always white cake with vanilla frosting!