Monday, April 25, 2011

cook's illustrated carrot cake and cream cheese frosting

cook's illustrated  recipe for carrot cake and cream cheese frosting is my new go to, gotta have, can't do without recipe. i baked this for easter sunday and it was a hit! it was really a hit with my husband, so it is a true keeper in my book. it baked tall and moist, frosted with a delicate cream cheese frosting that is not overly sweet or thick. i just loved it....all. i just ate a piece for breakfast. shhhhhh. enjoy.

simple carrot cake with cream cheese frosting-cook's illustrated magazine 2003
makes one 13 by 9-inch cake

you can add walnuts and raisins, both or neither, if you do both, add about ten minutes onto your baking time. i added one cup of toasted walnuts. delicious!

carrot cake
2 1/2 cups (12 1/2 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour

1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 pound (6 to 7 medium) carrots, peeled

1 1/2 cups (10 1/2 ounces) granulated sugar

1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces) packed light brown sugar

4 large eggs

1 1/2 cups safflower, canola, or vegetable oil

cream cheese frosting
8 ounces cream cheese, softened but still cool

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened but still cool

1 tablespoon sour cream

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/4 cups confectioners' sugar

1. for the cake: adjust oven rack to middle position; heat oven to 350 degrees. spray 13 by 9-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.

2. whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt in large bowl; set aside.

3. in food processor fitted with large shredding disk, shred carrots (you should have about 3 cups); transfer carrots to bowl and set aside. wipe out food processor workbowl and fit with metal blade. process granulated and brown sugars and eggs until frothy and thoroughly combined, about 20 seconds. with machine running, add oil through feed tube in steady stream. process until mixture is light in color and well emulsified, about 20 seconds longer. scrape mixture into medium bowl. stir in carrots and dry ingredients until incorporated and no streaks of flour remain. pour into prepared pan and bake until toothpick or skewer inserted into center of cake comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking time. cool cake to room temperature in pan on wire rack, about 2 hours.

4. for the frosting: when cake is cool, process cream cheese, butter, sour cream, and vanilla in clean food processor workbowl until combined, about 5 seconds, scraping down bowl with rubber spatula as needed. add confectioners' sugar and process until smooth, about 10 seconds.

5. ice cake and store in the fridge. i think it tastes best served cold. yum.


Kayte said...

Carrot Cake is certainly Easter-bunny friendly! This looks delicious...there is no finer frosting in my mind! Happy Easter!

Barbara Bakes said...

The cake sounds fabulous. I've been wanting to bake some carrot cakes in little loafs to give away. Do you think that would work?

Pam said...

I would truly eat a huge slice of this beautiful carrot cake for breakfast too... it looks SO GOOD!

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

OK, I'm not a baker, but I am gonna seriously make me some of that cream cheese frosting whether I bake the cake or not! Sounds absolutely heavenly.

Not Quite Nigella said...

That looks delicious! I can't eat carrot cake without that delicious cream cheese frosting and this cake looks so moist! :)

Judy said...

I made CI's carrot cake last year and have been experimenting with other carrot cake recipes since. It's definitely my favorite so far.

Barbara Bakes said...

This really is a fabulous recipe. Thanks for posting!

Andrew Irving said...

This is the recipe we use at the French House at UW-Madison. Carrot Cake is not really 'French' but the French love it. It's very popular in France. Of course, our residents and guests love this too!