Every year for the last 5 years or so, a family friend has brought us a carrot cake for Christmas. I look forward to it every year, as she makes the best one I've ever had. This year, husband's mom asked if there was anything I wanted them to bring from home when they came for Christmas (assuming I'd request BBQ...again). I (half-jokingly) said "Please tell Debbie to make me a carrot cake! The clan decided to not disappoint the brand new mamma, so Debbie baked a cake and the Alfords drove it to Boston! What love.
This Easter, I was asked to bring a carrot cake to dinner. I knew just who to call for a recipe. Debbie was kind enough to share her recipe with me - and agreed to let me share it with all of you!
2 cups sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 cups self-rising flour
2 tsp cinnamon
1 Tbsp vanilla
1.5 cups vegetable oil
3 cups grated carrots
1 cup roughly chopped pecans (toasted optional)
1 stick butter, softened to room temperature
8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 box (1 lb) powdered sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
2-3 Tbsp milk (add a little at a time to get the right consistency)
Optional: 1/4 cup roughly chopped pecans (or more if desired)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cut wax paper to fit bottom of 2 round cake pans. Grease pan & place wax paper in bottom.
Mix sugar, baking soda, flour & cinnamon in large bowl or mixer.
Make a well in the dry ingredients. Add oil. Add eggs 1 at a time.
Add vanilla, nuts and carrots and mix well.
Pour batter evenly into pans.
Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, testing for doneness with toothpick.
Cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes. Flip layers onto cooling rack.
Cream Cheese Icing
Mix wet ingredients (except milk) together until smooth.
Add powdered sugar.
Add milk a little at a time until you reach desired consistency.
Optional: Stir in pecans, or sprinkle on top
Once cake has cooled, ice between the layers, top and sides of cake.
Optional: sprinkle top or around the rim with chopped pecans or grated carrots.