Tag Archives: cake

Carrot Cake

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This amazing carrot cake recipe will always conjure up some wonderful memories. Carrot cake is my dad’s absolute favorite type of cake and I can remember eating it in our backyard and watching the fireflies on his birthday. It also happens to be the favorite cake of my dear friend Elizabeth (hold the walnuts please), but I secretly think that she’s just in it for the cream cheese frosting. This particular recipe holds significance for me because it comes from one of the sweetest people I know, the wonderful Andria (a co-worker of mine), and whenever I make this recipe I am reminded of my 3 wonderful summers at my old office.

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With all of these wonderful memories tied to carrot cake, it is definitely one of my favorite types of cake as well. When Andria made the cake for the office it was as light as air; when I made the recipe the cake was much denser. Either way, it is an amazing recipe that I knew I had to share with you!

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Best Ever Carrot Cake
courtesy of Andria Cornell

Cake
Ingredients
4 large eggs (at room temperature)
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups granulated sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp baking soda
3 cups finely shredded carrots*
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup finely chopped and toasted pecans/walnuts (optional

*A note about the carrots: You can use either baby carrots or the traditional stick carrots when making this cake. Using baby carrots take longer to grate but they will result in a much sweeter cake. Carrot cake is traditionally made with the large stick carrots, so choose accordingly.

Method
1) Preheat oven to 350° F
2) Grease and flour two 9-inch round cake pans
3) In a large bowl stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and baking soda.
4) In another large bowl, beat together the 4 eggs, carrots, and oil. Make sure that all of the egg yolks get broken and properly incorporated.
5) Pour this wet mixture into the dry flour mixture and gently stir until combined. Make sure to scrape the bottom of the bowl so that there are no floury sections left in the batter.
6) Split batter evenly between the 2 greased and floured cake pans.
7) Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes, checking for doneness every 2 minutes or so beginning at 26 minutes. Carrot cake can go from moist to dry very quickly so you must be very careful. Remove from oven when a toothpick emerges clean from the center of the cake.
8 ) After cooling 10 minutes remove the cakes from pans and allow to cool on a rack until completely cool.

Cream Cheese Frosting
Ingredients
1 8oz tub/brick of cream cheese
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter at room temperature
2 tsp vanilla extract
5 3/4-6 1/4 cups powdered/confectioners sugar

Method
1) Blend together cream cheese, butter, and vanilla in a large bowl. Gradually add in powdered sugar, one cup at a time, being sure to blend completely after each addition. After adding 5 cups you can add however much more you would like to bring it to spreading consistency and to make it as sugary as you’d like.

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Torta Mil Hojas

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Torta Mil Hojas (Cake of 1,000 Sheets) is an amazing Chilean cake that is a real labor of love. Each layer has dulce de leche, and in the case of this cake, whipped cream in between each layer. The recipe makes ten layers, but I only had enough dulce de leche to use 6 layers.

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Each ball of dough was somewhere in size between a golf ball and a tennis ball and was pretty easily rolled into a 9-inch circle. However, I had to bake each of these layers individually, so it took about 2 hours and turned into a real labor of love. For this reason I probably won’t ever make this cake again. While in Chile I never witnessed a homemade version of this cake (only bakery-produced) and now I know why.

If you are feeling brave and have lots of time, this is an absolutely amazing dessert that will really wow your guests. My cake made ten servings, but I think my rounds ended up being a bit smaller than the 9-inches recommended in the recipe.

Torta Mil Hojas
Adapted from All Recipes

Ingredients
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
7/8 cup butter
3 egg yolks
1 cup milk

2 (14 ounce) cans sweetened condensed milk
1 pint whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp powdered sugar

Method
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Mix together the flour and baking powder; set aside.
In a large bowl, beat the butter until creamy. Blend in the egg yolks, one at a time. Beat in the flour mixture alternately with the milk. The dough will be stiff like a cookie dough. Divide the dough into 10 pieces and shape into balls. Roll each ball into a 9 inch circle. Place on cookie sheets and prick with a fork in several places.

Bake in the preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes, or until golden brown. Set aside to cool fully, from 10 minutes up to over night.

Make the Caramel Filling: In a sauce pan, boil the unopened cans of sweetened condensed milk for 3 hours. Monitor the water closely, to make sure there is always water in the pan. Remove can from heat and let cool for 10 to 15 minutes.

Assemble cake about 2 hours before serving. First, whip cream until soft peaks form. Add vanilla and powdered sugar, then beat until slightly firmer than normal whipped cream. Take first layer, spread first with dulce de leche and then whipped cream, continue stacking and layering until all layers (or all filling) are (is) used. Place cake in refrigerator, remove immediately before serving.