So i’m back from Paris, with tons of pictures of chocolate (at least the ones I could sneak. I don’t understand why they don’t let people take pictures of chocolate. I mean, it’s chocolate.)
One of the many things I loved about Paris was the food! So many halal restaurants! I ate way too much, but I also started missing my kitchen. I had a lot of carrot cake there, almost everyday, so I thought i’d make one when I got back, and I did! The recipe is really easy, and the cream cheese frosting is fluffy and creamy. My camera’s out again so no more cell phone pictures! The recipe’s pretty straightforward in terms of ingredients. I actually prefer using normal salted butter for the cake and the frosting, so there’s no need to go out and buy unsalted butter, unless you have some in the fridge, but I would still use salted butter.
Here’s what you’ll need!
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg (you don’t have to add it, but it adds a nice flavor)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (i added a about 3/4 cup because i love walnuts)
2 medium sized carrots, grated
Start off by preheating your oven to 180 C
Cream the butter and sugar together. And please use a wooden spoon! Once the butter and sugar have turned into a bowl of fluffy goodness add the eggs in one at a time. Don’t over mix. Once the eggs have been mixed in add the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Then fold in the carrots and walnuts. That’s it!
If you want a double layer cake I suggest using 2 8-inch round pans. I tried cutting my cake in half, and the walnuts weren’t cooperating. For even layers use two cake pans. You can also just pour the batter into a bunt pan or just one cake pan, which should be at least 10 inches round. If it’s any smaller the edges and top will burn. Bake them for about 25-30 minutes if you’re using two pans, but check them after 20. If you’re using one pan it’ll take longer, anywhere from 40-60 minutes, depending on what pan you use, but you should check it after 25 minutes to see how it’s doing. If the cake starts turning brown early on, you can put it on a lower rack, but try keeping it as centered as possible.
As for the frosting, the butter and cream cheese here is delicious so I didn’t add anything fancy. And I used salted butter. If you have only unsalted butter, just add some salt.
1/2 cup softened but still cold butter
1/2 cup cream cheese
1 cup icing sugar
All you do is cream the butter and cream cheese together till it’s smooth. Then add the icing sugar and keep mixing till there’s no lumps! You might need more or less icing sugar depending on how sweet the icing sugar is. Here in Germany it’s not as sweet as it is in Pakistan or America. You can also add a drop or two of vanilla, but it’s not necessary.
I know it’s hard, but you have to wait for the cake to cool completely before topping it off with the frosting! If you want to fill and cover the cake make double the recipe above. I just used it in the center and on top, not around the sides. And one you’ve made the frosting, put it in the fridge for a bit so it’s chilled through. It tastes much better.
I also promised to post a bread and butter pudding recipe ages ago and completely forgot! I don’t have any pictures because I haven’t made it recently, but this recipe has been used many times! I usually make it with croissants. You can use bread, but it won’t taste as good!
1 cup milk
1/2 cup sugar (you can use brown sugar, or mix the two) plus 2 tablespoons
1 tsp cinnamon
a few drops of vanilla
vanilla ice cream
You can make little individual dishes which look great, or you just make one big dish.
Preheat your oven to 180 C.
Start off by whisking the eggs, 1/2 cup sugar and cinnamon together. Whisk in the milk and vanilla. Break the croissants into big chunks. Pour the egg mixture over the croissants. Press the croissants into the egg mixture with a fork. Don’t worry if every piece isn’t completely covered. It’ll soak it up eventually. Before popping it into the oven sprinkle over the 2 tablespoons of sugar. Bake for about 15-20 minutes. Don’t let the sugar on top burn though.
If you want to make it extra rich, use evaporated milk instead. As for the caramel, just place a can of condensed milk in a saucepan of simmering water for about 2 hours, let it cool, open it, and you have a can of caramel. You can also just buy a bottle. It’s actually great for breakfast because it’s pretty much fancy french toast!