I don’t write baking posts very often. Baking, for me, is kind of challenging. I’m honestly a reasonably skilled baker, but it is always a bit of a struggle to work up to doing it. Then it is always a bit of struggle to not rush through it. In baking, the real skill is patience. Measuring and mixing are fairly easy, and makes up the bulk of the skills you need to bake, but following instructions, and doing everything in the correct order is paramount, and this is where I get hung up. I have learned some things over the years that have helped me work through my impatience problem.
First, preparation is everything. It starts with reading a recipe and making sure that you have all of your ingredients on hand. I have on more than one occasion realized I was half a cup of flour or one egg short of what my recipe needed. Going to the store when this happens is way lame, and improvising too much with a baking recipe isn’t really an option. Second, is reading comprehension. Read your recipe instructions in advance and make sure you know the order of things. Baking recipes almost always combine wet ingredients and dry ingredients separately, and the order you combine ingredients is really important to your finished product.
With all that being said, I have a great Carrot Cake recipe. It takes a few steps, but is perfect for a special occasion. It is wonderfully moist because the cake is finished with a hot glaze, and I’ve added a Cinnamon cream Cheese Frosting that will knock your socks off.
(3) 8″ round cake tins
2 C. Flour Sifted
2 Tsp Baking Soda
1/2 Tsp Salt
3/4 Vegetable Oil
2 Tsp Vanilla
2 C. Sugar
2 Tsp Cinnamon
3/4 c. Butter Milk
1 C. Crushed Pineapple
1 C. Coconut Flake
2 C. Grated Carrots
1 C. Chopped Pecans
- Heat Oven to 350 °. Spray pans with cooking spray and line the bottom of your round pans with parchment paper. To do this, lay out parchment and use one of your pans to trace a template. Cut out three round pieces of parchment and lay in the bottom of your greased pans.
- Sift together your Dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon) and set aside.
- Prepare and measure your flavor agents and set aside. (Grate the carrots, strain the pineapple, chop your pecans, and measure your coconut flake)
- Beat Eggs, and add vegetable oil, buttermilk, sugar, and vanilla. Mix very well.
- Slowly add Dry ingredients. Turn your mixer down to a low speed to save yourself a mess.
- Add Pinapple, Carrots, coconut, and pecans. Mix slowly, but completely.
- Divide your batter into your three pans evening. The best way to ensure even distribution is to use a measuring cup and slowly add the same amounts to each pan.
- Bake on 350 ° for approximately 35-40 minutes. Check doneness, but inserting a toothpick into the center of the cakes. If it comes away clean, it is done.
1/2 C. Sugar
1/4 C. Butter Milk
1/2 Tbsp Karo Syrup
1/4 Tsp Baking Soda
1/2 Cube Butter
1/2 Tsp. Vanilla
- Have this mixture prepared ahead of your cakes finishing as it should be applied to hot cakes.
- Mix all ingredients together in a sauce pan and bring to a boil for five minutes.
- Pour over hot cakes.
Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting
1 C. Cream Cheese
1/2 C. Butter
3 C. Powdered Sugar
2 Tbsp Whole Milk
1 Tbsp Cinnamon
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
- Cream softened butter and cream cheese in the mixer.
- Add Vanilla, cinnamon, milk, and powdered sugar.
- Mix until fully combined.
- Once your cakes have absorbed the glaze and cooled fully, run a knife around the edges of the pans, and turn them out onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper.
- Choose your cake stand or platter. Place a small dollup of frosting on the center of the stand, and place your first layer on top of the tray. Be sure to make any adjustments to placement now.
- Spread 1/3 of your frosting evening over the top of your cake.
- Lay the next cake on top and repeat.
- Once you have the final layer on top, spread the remainder of your frosting on the top and decorate with pecans.
“Find something you are passionate about and keep tremendously interested in it.” – Julia Child