Sunday, April 20, 2014

Carrot cake made with canned carrots -- and cream cheese frosting recipe

Many years ago someone challenged me to come up with recipes using stuff they got from a food pantry. A lot of canned carrots my friend told me. And of course, she, nor her family, liked canned carrots. Fresh carrots were fine, but canned? NOPE!
Well, here's my recipe for making carrot cake with canned carrots. And a cream cheese frosting recipe! Look for sales on the cream cheese or buy the store brand.
Carrot cake made canned carrots -- and cream cheese frosting
Carrot cake with cream cheese frosting
Ingredients for the carrot cake:
2 cans (15 ounces each) canned carrots, unsalted if possible
½ cup vegetable oil
½ cup unsweetened apple sauce
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
4 large eggs
1½ cups granulated white sugar
½ cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1 cup chopped walnuts
½ to ¾ cup raisins
1 cup shredded raw carrots

Ingredients for cream cheese frosting:
2 (8-ounces each) packages cream cheese or reduced fat cream cheese
1½ to 2½ cups powdered sugar

How to make carrot cake:
Preheat the oven to 350*F. Spray a 13x9-inch cake pan with nonstick cooking spray.
Drain the carrots and mash them or puree well. You can use a potato masher or a mixer or a food processor or a blender. If your blender is small, puree the carrots in small batches. Add pureed carrots to a large bowl.

In another larger bowl, using your mixer, blend together the eggs, granulated sugar, brown sugar, applesauce and oil. Fold this mixture into the pureed carrots and mix well to incorporate
In another large bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda and baking powder.

Gradually fold in the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Add cinnamon and still or mix well to make sure everything is incorporated.
Stir shredded carrots, raisins and half the walnuts into batter, if desired.

Carefully pour the batter into the prepared pan. Place in preheated oven and bake approximately 25 to 30 minutes, until toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool completely and frost with cream cheese frosting.

How to make cream cheese frosting:
Bring cream cheese to room temperature. Add to large mixing bowl. Mix on medium speed until it becomes very soft.

Slowly incorporate powdered sugar on low speed until it is all added. Mix on medium speed for approximately 2 minutes until frosting is smooth and creamy. Adjust the powdered sugar to make it as sweet as you like.

The frosting can be refrigerated but bring to room temperature before frosting the cake. When you frost the cake, sprinkle the rest of the walnuts over it.

 Yield: about 12 to 16 2x2-inch squares.

Thanks to Becky, Joanne and Anne for the photo from yesterday's Easter Brunch!!! 

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