Pineapple Carrot Cake
To be honest, I have never been that great a fan of carrot cake. There was just something about it that I didn't care for. It may have been the spices (it usually contains nutmeg and I am NOT a fan of that spice), the carrots may have been in too big chunks, too many nuts and or raisins, the cream cheese frosting may have been too cloying, who knows. It just wasn't one of my favorites. However, I have a very good friend who loves the stuff and I wanted to make something special for him. I have tried different recipes, but always on the lookout for one that is “better” in some way. I think I may have found it here. It contains crushed pineapple, no nuts and no raisins. The carrots are supposed to be grated, but I put them in my food processor and finely chopped them. For spices, mostly cinnamon, but just a little bit of ginger to perk it up a bit. And for the cream cheese frosting, only half the amount of cream cheese that most call for. The frosting is lighter and not as rich as most and quite tasty. I think you will like it. This cake should probably be refrigerated if not going to be eaten within a day.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees, grease a 9x13 inch cake pan and set aside.
3 cups finely chopped or grated carrots (I used a 10 oz bag of shredded carrots that I then finely chopped in my food processor, but you can do as you please)
1 8 oz can of crushed pineapple, well drained (or use about a cup and a half of fresh pineapple chopped with the carrots)
¾ cup vegetable oil
2 cups dark brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Put all in a large bowl and mix until well blended
Then add to the bowl:
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
Using a spatula or large spoon, mix until just blended, then spread in the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake for 35-45 minutes, until nicely browned and a toothpick in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool until completely cooled.
For the frosting:
4 oz cream cheese, room temperature
½ cup butter (1 stick), room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
2-3 cups powdered sugar
Mix the butter and cream cheese together until well blended, stir in the powdered sugar about ½ cup at a time and continue mixing until it is a fairly spreadable mixture, adding more sugar as need be or it gets too stiff, a little bit of milk can be stirred in. Spread a fairly thin layer on top of the cake.