Excuses, Excuses...

Aaand I'm back!  As the title notes, I am full of all sorts of excuses and baloney today...so bear with me.  First off, let's start with today's recipe.  My Mom made a carrot cake for Dad's birthday, and it looked so pretty I thought I'd just have to make some cupcakes of my own, complete with creamy delicious frosting, and maybe I'd get ambitious and pipe on some pretty little carrots too!  Ha.  Then we moved.  I've been telling friends that our new place could be a contender for "Hoarders" as of late.  Boxes piled up, just crap....eeeeeverywhere.  So carrot cake got put off for a little bit.  Then I got stressed.  And I was like "Okay, we're moving everything aside and I'm making some darn cupcakes!"  So I invited my friend Beth over, and bought all of my ingredients.

Then we got to talking... :) hehe....

So 8PM rolls around and I'm like, "Oh!  Cupcakes! Haha, woops!"  So I made them.  And wow.  Delicious!! Just sooo good.  Moist, light, perfect.  Since it was getting late, I drove Beth home while the cakes cooled.  Then I got back and it was, oh, 10PM.  And I hadn't cleaned up.  And then I had a cupcake.  They were literally so good at that point that not only did I not feel like MAKING frosting, but I didn't want to mess with the awesome flavor they were already packing.  So I passed. No creamy frosting, no piped on carrots, just cake (hey, stop it!  I can hear you judging me through my computer screen!).  :) They still went like hotcakes the next day at work.  Probably because people were thinking, "Ooh, muffins!  Healthy!" as us Americans are wont to do.  Hey, if an absence of frosting makes you feel better, my lips are sealed!

So this is where I usually show you a picture of a pretty little cupcake.


Excuses again.  So I'll provide a different picture instead...

That's my office building.  Some of you know I work for a certain government agency, and guess what?  No cameras inside.  No cell phones inside.  No cell phones with cameras or computers with cameras....you get the picture.  So I got nothin!  Luckily, that talented Mama of mine DID catch a photo of Dad's birthday cake (carrot cake is his fave), so I have this for you!

Gorgeous right?!  She doesn't know it...but I'm going to steal that cake plate someday.  Or at least find one that cute!  And those are crushed pecans on the sides.  Delicious, AND pretty!  Okay, so on to the recipe already!  This one hails from allrecipes.com (an awesome go-to for just about anything!).

Carrot Cake
from AllRecipes.com

  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 cups shredded carrots
  • 1 cup flaked coconut
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts**
  • 1 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple with juice
  • 1 cup raisins**
**Call me a purist, but I omitted the walnuts and raisins.  Just not my cup of tea.  It was perfectly fine without.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).  Grease and flour an 8x12 inch pan.

In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Set aside.

In a large bowl, combine eggs, buttermilk, oil, sugar and vanilla. Mix well. Add flour mixture and mix well.
In a medium bowl, combine shredded carrots, coconut, walnuts, pineapple and raisins.

Using a large wooden spoon or a very heavy whisk, add carrot mixture to batter and fold in well.

Pour into prepared 8x12 inch pan, and bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 1 hour. Check with toothpick.

Allow to cool for at least 20 minutes before serving.

Cream Cheese Frosting
From AllRecipes.com

  • 2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
In a medium bowl, cream together the cream cheese and butter until creamy. Mix in the vanilla, then gradually stir in the confectioners' sugar. Store in the refrigerator after use.

**Nat note: I also learned from the awesome teacher at Hill's Kitchen here in DC that if you want your frosting to harden a bit (kinda like the grocery store sort) you can add a tablespoon or two of milk to your frosting, and adjust the amount of powdered sugar as needed.

So I hope you all enjoy!  Happy Mother's Day to all the Moms out there this weekend, including all three of my wonderful Moms!

And last but not least, Happy Birthday to my gorgeous Mom (then and now!) tomorrow!  Love you!!

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