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World's best carrot-cake recipe


Fat Guy
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I made the Commissary cake yesterday for a BBQ we were going to last night. It's a strange recipe and I worried that it wouldn't work out in the end (I seem to always do this to myself...try recipes for the first time for major events!).

I'm used to cake recipes that add the eggs to the butter or oil/sugar mixture first. The alternating flour mixture with eggs addition threw me for a loop. I fretted that with all that mixing it would lead to a tough, dense cake (i.e. the flour would get overworked). The cake layers definately didn't rise very much in the middle which I guess was good in the end as I didn't have to level them off.

I followed Ling's suggestion of trying 1 cup butter with 1/4 cup oil. I thought it might be too rich with the oil+butter+4 eggs but it turned out very well. I baked it in 2 9-inch cake pans at 350 for about 30-40 mins. I left the nuts out as I didn't know if the other guests had allergies and frankly I prefer a nut-free carrot cake. My SO didn't enjoy the raisins but everyone else raved about the cake! I'm now keen to try the UCLA carrot cake and decide which one will be my "go to" recipe. Although they are very similar recipes, I'm interested to see how I like the extra spices in the UCLA version. I'm also wondering how cutting back on the fat will change the final outcome. Do you notice a difference by eliminating the 1/4 cup of oil?

I frosted with a recipe of 2-8oz blocks of cream cheese, 1/2 cup butter, 2 cups of icing (confectioners for you Americans) sugar and 1-2 tsps of vanilla. I found it goopy. I prefer my frosting bit "stiffer" but it did have the perfect amount of tang and wasn't overly sweet.

Thank you everyone for all the tips! I'll let you know what I think of the UCLA version when it comes out of the oven.

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Coming in late to this conversation, sorry...

No one has mentioned the carrot cake recipe in the first Silver Palate cookbook. It's the only recipe I still use from that book. I've never tried another since finding it. It has everything folks seem to want-- dark, super moist, the coconut-pineapple-raisin thing...I've also found it to be very flexible and forgiving. I've backed it in 10 inch rounds, sheet pans, as muffins, etc. and it always works. It's not overly sweet either, which makes it a perfect foil for the cream cheese icing. Though as unfrosted muffins, it may well be the most popular thing I've ever put out for brunches.


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Well Linda K, it is one of my favourites too and it is as your describe. I have made it often for coconut and pineapple carrot cake lovers.

I prefer a recipe I use that was from a lady who supplied health food type restaurants in my area, back in the 60's and 70's. But it may well be because I am not a huge coconut fan and I don't feel that there always has to be pineapple in a carrot cake.

But as you say, you cannot go wrong with it. I have baked it in springform pans, loaf tins, just about anything. It is a very rich tasting cake and has a lovely crumb. I like to call it breakfast!

Hugs Squirrelly Cakes

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I made carrot cake cupcakes last night. This recipe is from Martha Stewart's Everyday food. I really like them because they dont have as much oil as most recipes, yet they are still moist and delicious. They whip up really fast( you dont even need a mixer). I added some orange flavored dried cranberries and more coconut to the cupcakes. I also didnt have OJ, so I used apple juice. I also used pecans for the walnuts.

gallery_25969_665_92924.jpg

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I tried to make the pecan cream filling last night, the butter wouldn't blend completely into the sugar/flour mixure without seperating. Does anyone have pictures of what the filling is suppose to look like. Mine looked like it had too much butter it was very oily. I used 3/4c of butter (2 sticks plus 1/4 stick).

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Well, that's probably your problem right there. If you mean normal US "sticks" of butter, 4 to a pound, they're half a cup each. So 3/4 cup is 1 1/2 sticks, not 2 1/4 sticks. Sounds like you've got 50% too much butter in there, if the recipe calls for 3/4 cup.

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Well, that's probably your problem right there.  If you mean normal US "sticks" of butter, 4 to a pound, they're half a cup each.  So 3/4 cup is 1 1/2 sticks, not 2 1/4 sticks.  Sounds like you've got 50% too much butter in there, if the recipe calls for 3/4 cup.

I'm sorry I had a typo...I used 1 1/4 stick of butter. The filling looks like a pile of goop in sitting in liqified butter. It's not creamy at all. For those who have made this will you please post how this should look?

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I tried to make the pecan cream filling last night, the butter wouldn't blend completely into the sugar/flour mixure without seperating.

I found a recipe on the web for this.

Here's the instructions for the pecan cream filling:

Pecan Cream Filling:

1-1/2 cups sugar

1/4 cup flour

3/4 tsp. salt

1-1/2 cups heavy cream

3/4 cup unsalted butter

1-1/4 cups chopped pecans

2 tsp. vanilla

In a heavy saucepan, blend well the flour, sugar and salt. Gradually stir in the cream. Add the butter. Cook and stir the mixture over a low heat until the butter has melted, then let simmer for 20-30 minutes until golden brown in color, stirring occasionally. Cool to lukewarm. Stir in the nuts and vanilla. Let cool and refrigerate, preferably overnight. If too thick to spread, bring to room temperature before using.

You used cream, right? Simmered long enough? Cooled, then added nuts? Refrigerate overnight?

Edited by chefpeon (log)
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i want to try making this however does anyone know, or has tried, making it with less than the 2 cups of sugar called for in the cake part, i.e. that would be maybe reduced to 1 1/2 c? wondering if this will affect the success of baking the cake. thanx.

Edited by ohev'ochel (log)
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i want to try making this however does anyone know, or has tried, making it with less than the 2 cups of sugar called for in the cake part, i.e. that would be maybe reduced to 1 1/2 c?  wondering if this will affect the success of baking the cake.  thanx.

Thanks everyone for the suggestions. I figured out what I was doing wrong. I have the temp to high on the stove which cause the butter to seperate. I remade the filling and keep the temp on low and that work just fine.

Ohev, I made the carrot cake today with these modifications:

2 1/4 cup flour

1 1/4 cup white sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

2 tsp Baking Powder

1 tsp Baking Soda

1 tsp salt

2 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp Ginger

1/2 tsp Allspice

4 eggs

1 cup butter, melted

1/4 cup corn oil

1/2 cup coconut finely shredded

1/2 cup crushed, I ran this threw the food processor because I didn't want chunks of pineapple in the cake...work just fine

1 cup raisons

2 10oz bags shedded Carrots, finely grated in Food Processor

The next time I make the cake I will omit the follow:

raisons I didn't care for these much in the cake besides they sunk to the bottom of the pan

ginger

allspice

I want to try the cake with out the above 2 spices

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Ohev, I made the carrot cake today with these modifications:

2 1/4 cup flour

1 1/4 cup white sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

2 tsp Baking Powder

1 tsp Baking Soda

1 tsp salt

2 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp Ginger

1/2 tsp Allspice

4 eggs

1 cup butter, melted

1/4 cup corn oil

1/2 cup coconut finely shredded

1/2 cup crushed, I ran this threw the food processor because I didn't want chunks of pineapple in the cake...work just fine

1 cup raisons

2 10oz bags shedded Carrots, finely grated in Food Processor

The next time I make the cake I will omit the follow:

raisons I didn't care for these much in the cake besides they sunk to the bottom of the pan

ginger

allspice

I want to try the cake with out the above 2 spices

sugarlove --

thanks a bundle. i am gonna replace the raisins (yuckola) with the pineapple! :laugh::laugh: eta: the filling sounds mighty good!

Edited by ohev'ochel (log)
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A word of warning - if the filling is too firm at room temp, don't nuke it to soften it up! I just used this filling in a wedding cake with chocolate cake, and right before filling the cake, I put it in the microwave for 30 seconds, and the whole thing separated. I drained as much of the butter as I could and whisked cold cubes of butter back into it and managed to save it. Whew!

Turned out to be an incredible filling for a "turtle" cake. The wedding was today, and that cake was the second to go (behind the chocolate cake with white chocolate/creme de menthe filling).

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The carrot wedding-cum-birthday cake I made for my father's celebration last night. Excuse the ugly service trolley the restaurant laid it on :rolleyes: that's all they had available.

gallery_45882_3234_5798.jpg

It was covered with cream cheese frosting, and I cut the stems of the roses to place in the acrylic bowl. My piping sucked because working in our tropical heat the frosting got too soft too quickly but I was too lazy and tired to put it back in the fridge to firm up again so there were more blobs than shells. But thankfully no one appeared to notice.

Even if I say so myself, I think the cake cut beautifully, and I was really really happy with the way the slices looked, with even layers and clean frosting in between - so all the obsessing with trimming the cakes etc. did pay off in the end. Unfortunately I didn't take pics of the slices to show.

Lots of compliments on the eating of the cake, and I have Squirrelly Cakes to thank for her addition of wheat bran to the recipe, plus all her and Sarah Philips' hand-holding, trouble-shooting and sage advice along the way. Thank goodness for the internet!

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Thank you for the compliments and encouragement from all you so much more experienced and professional bakers! I did have fun putting it all together, although I didn't realise how much devil there is in the detail. Somehow when I started conceiving the idea, I thought it would be a lot easier :biggrin: I have a HUGE appreciation for you who do this regularly or for a living!! (Although it's probably a LOT more fun playing with fondant and icing flowers etc.)

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  • 1 year later...

I'm making a Carrot Cake for my friend at work. I haven't made one since oh :hmmm: geezzzzz ummmm :blink: 1988? maybe. Is there anything I should be aware of or anything I can do to the recipe to make it better.?

there's 6 cups of carrot

raisens

Walnuts

and then the average ingredient; eggs, flour, baking soda, etc. or if anyone has a really good recipe please post it. I got the one I'm trying from allrecipes.com

.

Thanks in advance :biggrin:

Rena

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I'm making a Carrot Cake for my friend at work. I haven't made one since oh  :hmmm: geezzzzz ummmm :blink:  1988? maybe.  Is there anything I should be aware of or anything I can do to the recipe to make it better.?

there's 6 cups of carrot

raisens

Walnuts

and then the average ingredient; eggs, flour, baking soda, etc.  or if anyone has a really good recipe please post it.  I got the one I'm trying from allrecipes.com

.

Thanks in advance :biggrin:

Rena

This one is a never-fail recipe for me. It's from the Los Angeles Times California Cookbook. It bakes up a big, gorgeous, three-layer cake that's just about the best carrot cake I've had. I usually sprinkle it with more chopped walnuts after frosting. You could add raisins to the batter if you want them.

14-Carat Cake

MaryMc

Seattle, WA

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This one is a never-fail recipe for me.  It's from the Los Angeles Times California Cookbook.  It bakes up a big, gorgeous, three-layer cake that's just about the best carrot cake I've had.  I usually sprinkle it with more chopped walnuts after frosting.  You could add raisins to the batter if you want them.

14-Carat Cake

This looks a lot like the recipe my friend made for my wedding cake. I have made it many times and it is great.

edited because I cannot spell friend

Edited by eldereno (log)

Donna

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  • 1 year later...

I converted the Frog Commissary cake to be gluten free (I also reduced the yield, reduced the sugar and generally abused it), and it was remarkably tasty. I think I prefer a spicier cake, but it's certainly the best gluten-free carrot cake I've made so far.

Ingredients

1 stick melted butter

2 T oil (I used peanut, because it's what I had)

2 T light coconut milk

3/4 cup sugar

126 grams sweet gluten free flour blend (50g sweet white sorghum flour, 50g Whole Foods bake mix (sweet rice flour works fine too), 26g coconut flour)

1 tsp. cinnamon

1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

2 eggs

2 cups grated carrots

1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans

1/2 cup raisins

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a medium (2.5 qt) bowl, wisk together the melted butter, oil, coconut milk, and sugar. Sift together the flours, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add half the dry ingredients into the sugar-oil mixture and wisk. Add one egg, half the remaining dry ingredients, the second egg and the remaining dry ingredients while whisking vigorously. (Don't worry about over mixing, you can't make it tough)Add the carrots, raisins, and pecans.

Scoop with a 2oz disher into cupcake tin and bake for 15-20 minutes. Cool on rack.

Makes 14 not-too-sweet cupcake/muffins. They take cream-cheese frosting and some chopped toasted pecans very well.

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