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Sunday, September 20, 2015

Birthdays!






This girl!  Super excited about someone's birthday gifts
 
Alli did a wonderful job plating!

Don't mind the frosting!  It went a little crazy!!
Alli cutting the cake!
 
Most Delicious Carrot Cake
Makes 12 servings  Prep Time: 30 minutes Bake Time: 30-40 minutes
Ingredients:
Cake
  • 3 cups chopped pecans or pecan pieces
  • 1 ½ cups packed light brown sugar
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 4 large eggs
  • ¾ cup unsweetened applesauce1
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½  teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½  teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼  teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ¼  teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 cups grated carrots (about 4 large)
Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 16 ounces full-fat cream cheese, softened to room temperature2
  • ½  cup butter, softened to room temperature
  • 4 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 2-3 Tablespoons  heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch salt
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 300°F (149°C) degrees.  Spread the chopped pecans on the sheet and toast for 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
  2. Turn the oven up to 350°F (177°C). Spray two 9-inch cake pans* with nonstick spray. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk the brown sugar, granulated sugar, oil, eggs, applesauce, and vanilla together until combined and no brown sugar lumps remain. Set aside. In another large bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves together until combined. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and, using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, fold the ingredients together until just combined. Then, fold in the carrots and 1 cup of the toasted pecans. The rest of the pecans are used in step 6.
  4. Pour/spoon the batter evenly into the two cake pans. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the centers comes out clean. Allow the cakes to cool completely in the pans set on a wire rack.
  5. Make the frosting: In a large bowl using a handheld mixer or whisk beat the cream cheese and butter together on medium speed until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the confectioners’ sugar and 2 Tablespoons of cream. Beat for 2 minutes. Add the vanilla and 1 more Tablespoon cream if needed to thin out. Beat on high for 2 full minutes. Taste the frosting and add a pinch of salt if it is too sweet.
  6. Frost the cake!  Use the extra pecans to make it pretty!
  7. Cover extras up tightly and store at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Unfrosted cake remains fresh covered tightly at room temperature for 3-4 days. Store frosted cake in the refrigerator for up to 7 days and allow to come to room temperature before serving.

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