We were blessed to receive cookbooks in some of our holiday care packages this year. Over the course of 2 months, we went from owning zero cookbooks to being the owners of six of them… which may be a little excessive, but we’re so grateful and have really enjoyed having a source for some new recipes, especially on days when our Internet is down and we want to eat! This three-layer carrot cake was adapted from a Southern Living Christmas cookbook. I significantly reduced the amount of sugar in the cake and made only about half the amount of icing, which didn’t look quite as good as the Southern Living pictures, but still tasted plenty sweet for our American palates and was a huge crowd-pleaser for our Chinese friends as well. They raved about the flavor and texture, and they labeled it as the best cake they’d ever tasted. Thanks, Southern Living!
2 1/4 cups self rising flour (See recipe for self-rising flour if none is available. In this recipe I used 2 1/4 cups flour and added 1 Tablespoon plus 3/8 teaspoon baking powder, and 1 teaspoon plus 1/8 teaspoon salt; you can reduce the amount of flour by the amount of baking powder and salt you add if desired, but it’s not necessary.)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
4 large eggs
3 cups grated carrots
1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts, divided
cream cheese frosting
Directions and Notes:
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Prepare three 9″ round pans by cutting a 9″ circle of parchment paper to line the bottom of each pan and then greasing the bottom and sides of each pan.
3. In a medium bowl, sift together the self-rising flour, baking soda, and ground cinnamon. Set aside.
4. In a separate bowl, beat together the sugar, vegetable oil, and eggs.
5. Little by little, pour the flour mixture into the egg mixture, stirring to incorporate between each addition.
6. Fold in the grated carrots and 1 cup of the walnuts.
7. Divide the batter equally between the three pans. Bake for 30-35 minutes at 350 degrees or until a toothpick inserted in the center of each cake comes out clean.
8. Remove cakes from oven and allow them to cool for 10 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack or plates. Cool completely before frosting.
9. Top with cream cheese frosting and sprinkle with remaining walnuts.
*Recipe adapted from Southern Living Christmas Cookbook.