Sunday, August 8, 2010
If you were to ask my friends to associate one vegetable with me, most of them would probably choose the carrot. I’m totally proud of this relation because I do love carrots very much. Not only are they crunchy, sweet, juicy, and every bit delicious, they are a vegetable along with all the health benefits veggies provide. Did you know that just one medium carrot has 200% of your daily requirements for vitamin A? Did you also know that carrots are a good source of Thiamin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Fiber, Vitamin C, Vitamin K and many other nutrients? In fact, carrots are probably one of the healthiest foods you can really enjoy.
Carrots are most delectable eaten raw; however, if you are still a bit shy about munching on carrots like a bunny, why not hide them in a cake? Carrot cakes are a tasty proposition any time of the year, and for any occasion. To make you feel like you are actually consuming vegetables while indulging in this rich cake, let me tell you that there are THREE whole cups of carrots hidden in this cake. I think that’s pretty impressive.
Personally, I think that plain carrot cake without the icing is delicious, but I guess for some people, carrot cake just isn’t carrot cake without its cream cheese frosting. I mean seriously, how many people eat the cake just for an excuse to indulge in a whole quarter cup of icing? It’s true that the icing does turn the cake into something quite stunning. Doesn’t it look like snow resting on rooftops? Without the cream cheese frosting, it would just be a boring rooftop. And nobody likes a boring old rooftop now do they? Rudolph needs a soft landing because he’s no Bickey (my cat). Okay, this has gone a bit over the top (Over the ROOFtop that is) … how about a fun carrot fact to make my dryness all better? If you eat too many carrots your skin will actually start to turn orange! Now can finally get the healthy glow you’ve always wanted without risking your health… Hm. Alright, let’s just get on to the recipe…
1 1/4 cups vegetable oil
2 cups white sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground cinnamon
3 cups grated carrots
1 cup chopped walnuts
2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2. In a large bowl, beat together the eggs, oil, white sugar and 2 tsp vanilla. Mix in flour, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon. Stir in carrots. Fold in walnuts. Pour into a greased pan.
3. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.
4. For the cream cheese frosting, cream together the cream cheese and butter in a medium bowl until creamy. Mix in the vanilla, and then gradually stir in the confectioners' sugar. Refrigerate for 5 minutes before frosting the cooled cake. It’s vital that the cake is cooled completely to avoid a runny mess!