Spectacular Carrot Cake
I like birthdays.
Last night I was in heaven as I sat on the couch in my free Alaskan Airlines t-shirt and washed out, grey boxer shorts with my recently pampered feet on the coffee table. I’d just done the unthinkably torturous act of rewinding and rewatching my favorite performances on Idol twice. There was a slice of cake on my left, a slice of “can’t complain because it’s not his birthday” husband on my right.
It was then that I knew how hard today would be.
No “Happy Birthday” would play when I scanned my membership card at the gym.
No one would pretend to look the other way when I licked the syrup from my breakfast plate, used up all the hot water in the shower and pretended to lose my tweezers, razor and dental floss.
No one would immediately surrender when I reminded them, “Hey, it’s Mommy’s birthday” during a dispute over whose turn it was to play Angry Birds. Seriously, it was my turn.
But I still have an inbox full of sweet messages from you, my tweezers are mysteriously still missing and there’s half of this in my fridge.
My heart has never been fuller, my eyebrows have never been hairier and seriously, carrot cake has never been this spectacular.
Spectacular Carrot Cake
Makes 1 9-inch cake
- 1 lb. of carrots, peeled and cut into 1-2 in. chunks
- 3 c. almond flour
- 1 1/2 t. baking soda
- 1 t. salt
- 2 t. cinnamon
- 1/2 t. nutmeg
- 1/4 t. ground ginger
- 1/3 c. maple syrup
- 1/4 c. olive oil
- 3 organic eggs or egg-replacer equivalent
- 2 t. vanilla extract
Cream Cheese Frosting:
- 1 c. organic or non-dairy cream cheese
- 1/4 c. organic butter or vegan margarine
- 1/4 c. maple syrup
- pinch of salt
- 1 t. vanilla extract
*This cake is gluten-free, grain-free and free of refined sugars. Rather than modifying this recipe to use flour, you can find a more traditional carrot cake recipe here.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 9-in. cake pans and set aside.
Place carrots in a pot or in a microwave-safe bowl filled with about a 1/2 c. of water. Steam carrots until soft, approximately 10 minutes. Using a food processor or high speed blender, puree carrots, along with remaining cooking water, until completely smooth. Set aside.
In a large bowl, combine almond flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger.
In a smaller bowl, beat together maple syrup, olive oil, egg or egg replacer and vanilla.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and combine. Fold in pureed carrots.
Divide batter evenly between the two cake pans.
Bake for 28-32 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of each cake comes out clean.
Allow cakes to cool in pan for at least 30 minutes before carefully transferring to a cooling rack.
For frosting, beat together cream cheese, butter or margarine, maple syrup, salt and vanilla. This recipe will yield enough to frost just the top and the middle of the cakes, so double it if you want to frost the sides too.
Or eat more than a spoonful.
Use half of the remaining frosting to frost the first layer of cake.
Top with the second cake.
And frost with remaining frosting.
I grated a little extra nutmeg on top because I love nutmeg more than any person should.
And because I love you more than any person should, I cut into my birthday cake at 10 a.m. to show you how great it is.
Only for you.
No other reason.
Some may frown upon eating cake for second breakfast. Especially the day after your birthday.
Those are probably the same people who want you return to self-grooming, putting on clothing that you didn’t elicit while signing up for a credit card and only watching amateur karaoke performances once.
But I bet if you give them a slice of leftover birthday cake, they’ll get over it real fast.
At least, I hope so.