Carrot Cake

Carrot cake has always been a favorite in my household. When I bake birthday cakes for friends, they have two in the family who prefer carrot cake over all other flavors. There is something about the tender bits of carrot and spices that make one feel healthy and happy indulging . . . Just don’t take into consideration the oil and butter!

Carrot Cake
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground cloves
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup packed light or dark brown sugar
4 tablespoon (1/2 stick butter)
1 cup vegetable oil
5 large eggs
3 cups coarsely shredded, peeled raw carrots
1 large, green apple, peeled, cored and shredded.
1 ½ cups chopped walnuts or pecans.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 13 x 9 inch baking pan.
In a medium bowl stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices.

In a large bowl combine the granulated sugar, brown sugar, and butter; beat with an electric mixer until evenly blended. Beat in the oil until smooth. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, and then beat until thick and light, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the dry ingredients and beat just until blended. Stir in the shredded carrots, apple, orange zest, and nuts. The batter will be thick. Pour batter into prepared baking pan. Bake 50 to 60 minutes until the top springs back when lightly touched and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan. When completely cool, dust with powdered sugar or glaze with lemon icing.

Lemon Icing
2 cups powdered sugar
Enough lemon juice to form a thick paste.

The recipe can be  baked as cupcakes, too, just adjust your baking time.

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