Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Clayton's Carrot Cake with Orange-Cream Cheese Frosting

Finally, I have a new recipe for everyone! I haven't had my computer cord, and I have been stuck in Atlanta at my parent's house trying to figure out why I am sick. But since I have been home, we have celebrated 2 birthdays. I turned 22 last week and Mountain Man turned 24 this week. Ahh, we're getting so old it's terrifying. Anyway, I was so set on making myself a triple chocolate mousse cake for my birthday, but since I wasn't feeling well, my parents ordered my favorite Red Velvet Cake from Piece of Cake in Atlanta. If you ever need a moist, delicious cake... go there! They have so many varieties, you really can't go wrong (I would definitely recommend their Red Velvet, Carrot, Caramel, and any poundcake). But I started to feel a little bit better around Clayton's birthday, so we decided to have a small birthday party and cook some BBQ ribs, Jalapeno Popper Mac n' Cheese, Broccoli Coleslaw, and Carrot Cake. Carrot Cake is probably Mountain Man's favorite cake, and for some odd reason, I had never made carrot cake before, probably because I hate it (I don't like a lot of crap in my cake... I like just plain ole' cake). So he requested a super chunky carrot cake with a lot of cream cheese frosting, but I decided to do a little somethin' somethin' extra. I incorporated crystalized, dried orange segments and reconstituted them in orange liquor (as a play on how some people use crushed pineapple). I also continued the orange theme by making an orange-cream cheese frosting. So here's the recipe for MM's Carrot Cake, and I'll be posting the Jalapeno Popper Mac n' Cheese next. Enjoy!

Chunky Carrot Cake with Orange-Cream Cheese Frosting
For the Carrot Cake:
4 eggs
1 ¼C Vegetable Oil
2C Sugar
2t Vanilla
2C AP Flour
2t Baking Soda
2t Baking Powder
½t Salt
2t Cinnamon
¼t Ground Ginger
3C Grated Carrot
1C Pecans, Chopped
½C Golden Raisins
½C Dried Chopped Oranges, Reconstituted in Orange Liquor & Juice
½C Toasted Coconut

For the Orange Cream Cheese Frosting:
3 8oz Blocks of Cream Cheese, Softened
1 ½ Sticks of Unsalted Butter, Softened
2 ½C Confectioners’ Sugar, Sifted
2T Orange Zest
1T Orange Liquor & Juice, From Reconstituted Dried Oranges
2t Vanilla

1. Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F. Line 3 cake tins with parchment paper and then spray with Pam.
2. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, oil, white sugar, and vanilla. Mix in flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Stir in carrots. Then fold in pecans, golden raisins, and reconstituted oranges. Pour the cake batter into the prepared pans.
3. Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes each, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.
4. To Make the Frosting: beat together the cream cheese and butter until creamy, then add in the orange zest, orange liquor & juice, and vanilla. Next, beat in the sifted confectioners’ sugar until blended and smooth. Chill the frosting in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes in order to set up a little.
5. To assemble the layer cake, frost the top of one cake, place the other cake on top, and repeat. Frost the sides and top, swirling decoratively. Press the toasted coconut onto the sides of the cake for presentation. Refrigerate the cake for 30 minutes to set up the frosting, but then let the cake come to room temperature (about 10-15 minutes) before eating. 
6. Serve and enjoy!

Slice of Carrot Cake

Carrot Cake Layers

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