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It's All About the Baking came about because I want to share my Gluten-free baking. I've developed recipes and tricks over the past ten years so I could enjoy old favorites that tasted, well, just like the old favorites! Hundreds of experiments and tastings (including and especially friends who can eat gluten) later, I'm ready to share!

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Carrot Cake!

 It's no secret around here that I love cake. Cake and ice cream? Wow! Might be my favorite dessert. Time again for cake, and this time it's carrot cake, bursting with spicy deliciousness, moist, full of texture, and, of course, all the goodness of carrots! Health food.

 This cake is adapted from Joy of Cooking, or Joy-O as it's known around here. Today's cake is full of walnuts, pineapple, and coconut, and filled and frosted with cream cheese frosting. I always increase the spices and did so here by about 25%.

Unless eaten for breakfast, I always add a scoop of vanilla ice cream, preferably home made. But who's to say, adding dairy to breakfast pastry sounds about right, too! You really are covering all the food groups.

All your ingredients should be at room temp, that is if you keep your rooms at 68 to 70 degrees. If you're baking in a cold house in the winter, warm them up a bit in the oven. I measured out and prepared all the ingredients the night before except for the carrots. That way the cake goes together very quickly and the ingredients are at the right temp. It doesn't hurt them to sit out overnight, or all day if you plan to bake in the evening, though on a very warm day, you'd nee to rethink this.

Since a layer cake says celebration, I used two, 8-inch pans and a double batch of cream cheese frosting. And no, I don't indulge like this often! If you like things simple, no frosting is necessary for a delicious snack cake. A 9 x 13 pan is quick, too. Just make sure you get the middle completely baked.

Butter two 8-inch cake pans. Line them with circles of parchment and butter the parchment; dust with flour.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Sift or stir together:
1 1/3 cup GF flour*
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
Parchment paper lining.
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp cloves
1/4 to 1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
1 tsp allspice
1 tsp guar or xanthan gum, or psyllium seed husk powder
1/2 tsp salt

Mix together, then add the following to the above, dry ingredients:
2/3 cup coconut oil (melted) or vegetable oil
3 large eggs, slightly beaten and
Beat on low in a stand mixer or with a hand mixer (or silicone spatula) until thoroughly combined but not over beaten.

To the batter you've just created, add:
1 1/2 cups of grated carrots
1 cup of finely chopped walnuts (optional)
3/4 cup of shredded coconut
1/2 cup of crushed pineapple, with most of the liquid poured off

Because a GF cake is more fragile than a wheat cake, if the nuts are not chopped finely the cake may break apart when you slice it.

Pour the batter into the pans, dividing evenly. If you have the time and inclination, you could use a kitchen scale. Smooth out the top with a silicone or offset spatula.
Bake for 25 minutes and then test for doneness by using the time proven method of a tooth pick to the middle and seeing if it springs back from the press of a finger. The cake should be pulling away from the sides of the pan. Bake five minutes more, if necessary.

When done, cool on a wire rack for ten minutes. To remove from pan, loosen the edges with a knife, turn the cake out onto your hand, quickly peel off the parchment, and then sit upright back on the wire rack. When completely cool, frost with a generous amount of cream cheese frosting! I would double this amount, or you could simply frost the top and between the layers. I often decorate the top and sides of the cake with shredded coconut. And lemon curd between layers is really delicious, too.

* I always use Anson Mills Carolina Gold Rice Flour for all of the flour called for in the formula for GF baking flour from America's Test Kitchen.
Here is their formula for the ATK flour blend:
24 ounces (4 1/2 cups plus 1/3 cup) white rice flour
7 1/2 ounces (1 2/3 cups) brown rice flour
7 ounces (3/4 cup) potato starch
3/4 ounces (3 TB powdered milk
If you want to understand the science of why this works, please buy the ATK GF cookbook.

1 comment:

  1. Carrot cake is my favorite, Carol. I chose it for my first wedding cake, as a matter of fact. I love this recipe for GF version! It's on my list to try for myself!. Curious- did you use spring form pans? I don't suppose that it matters, but just wondering. Thanks again for your recipe blog!