My on again-off again romance with carrot cake began with a book I read as a child. I adored Little Golden Books and among my many favorites was Bugs Bunny’s Birthday. There was something about the illustrations that mesmerized me.
As an adult I’m prone to picking apart all the things that seem to go unquestioned by children but are illogical by grownup standards. For instance, why is Bugs Bunny wearing gloves? And what is the pink stuff he’s eating with his birthday cake? And why didn’t he know when his birthday was? These are the kind of deep questions that keep me awake at night.
The thing that made the most sense in the book was that his birthday cake was a carrot cake. I mean, of course a rabbit would want a carrot cake. Right? Now I’m pretty sure as a child I had never tasted carrot cake, but the idea fascinated me. And it wasn’t until a few years later that I finally had my first taste of it. It was ok, but not really what I expected. I decided it was something I would eat but probably not go out of my way to eat. After all, it was still cake!
Fast forward many more years. My oldest daughter, Miss Panda, made a carrot cake for Easter dinner. My expectations were low knowing it wasn’t my favorite type of cake, but I was excited that she baked it from scratch. I was blown away. The cake was amazing. Moist. Spices. Carrots, raisins, pineapple, nuts. Cream cheese frosting. It was like the mother lode of carrot cakes. And suddenly, I was in love with carrot cake all over again.
I’ll still choose German chocolate cake hands down over every other cake, but carrot cake is now a delicious runner up. Here is the recipe I used today https://www.jocooks.com/recipes/carrot-cake/. A couple of things to note: I used pecans instead of walnuts because it’s what I happened to have. I also added 1 tsp nutmeg and 1/4 cup coconut. I wanted smaller cakes to share so I baked them in 3 – 6″ round pans instead of 8″ pans. The baking time was the same.
I hope you give it a try. Let me know what you think ♥️