This is the ultimate carrot cake! The pumpkin puree adds a layer of moistness – without making the cake taste like pumpkin. My husband, the carrot cake devotee, gives this one double thumbs up. What he didn’t know – is that the last time I made this, I was out of carrots – and substituted an equal amount of grated sweet potatoes in place of the carrots. It was amazing! The cream cheese frosting recipe is one that I use almost exclusively. It uses half the sugar generally called for in most cream cheese frosting recipes – and yet is plenty sweet.
This cake freezes well – which is what we usually do! After we have gorged ourselves on cake, we cut what remains into portions, wrap them in plastic wrap and freeze for future late nite foraging excursions on the part of the tall one at our house
I hope this cake makes you as happy as it does us!
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Spray three 9-inch round cake pans and set aside.
Combine in a bowl and set aside:
2 cups flour (I always use whole grain flours) 1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt (kosher salt if you have it)
In a separate bowl combine:
1/2 cup brown sugar (try coconut sugar!)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup oil (I use coconut oil – melted)
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 cup buttermilk ( or 1 cup milk combined with 1 Tbl. vinegar)
Mix together and add to the bowl of dry ingredients. Stir until combined and add the following:
1 cup each – raisins, grated carrots (or sweet potatoes) and flaked coconut (I use unsweetened)
You could also add 1/2 cup of well drained crushed pineapple.
Put equal parts of the batter into each cake pan. Bake at 375 degrees for about 20 minutes – or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
Cool completely and frost (or not) as desired.
The Homestead’s Favorite Cream Cheese Frosting
12 ounces cream cheese – at room temperature 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter – softened
2 cups sifted powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Beat the cream cheese and butter together until well blended and fluffy. Add the remaining ingredients – all at once – and beat at slow speed until sugar is incorporated. Turn up the speed of your mixer and beat until desired consistency. No matter how tempted you may be to add liquid to this at the beginning – DON’T DO IT