Ingredients
·       ¼ c poppy seeds
·       1 tsp. grated lemon rind
·       1 pound carrots
·       8-ounce can of unsweetened crushed pineapple, drained
·       1¼ cups vegetable oil
·       2 cups brown sugar
·       4 large eggs
·       1 teaspoon vanilla
·       2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
·       1½ teaspoons baking powder
·       ½ teaspoon baking soda
·       2 teaspoons cinnamon
·       ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
·       ¼ teaspoon allspice
·       ½ teaspoon salt
·       1 cup chopped walnuts (or leave them whole)
·       ¾ - 1 cup raisins or currants
·       ½ cup shredded coconut (Amanda notes that the unhealthy sweetened kind tastes better in this recipe)

Cream Cheese Frosting
·       ½ cup salted butter, at room temperature
·       6 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
·       ½ teaspoon lemon zest
·       1 tablespoon lemon juice
·       2 cups confectioners’ sugar, more to taste

Now you can make the same delicious cake you've enjoyed at the dance!

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How to do it:

1.    Preheat the oven to 350°. Generously oil a 9 x 13-inch baking pan and dust it with poppy seeds (Yes, poppy seeds!)
2.    Peel the carrots, cut them in ½- to ¾-inch chunks and pulse them in the bowl of a food processor until flaked. We’ve found that this method of preparing the carrots consistently works better for a cake than the more traditional way of grating them. Set the carrots aside. Put the pineapple in a colander and set aside to drain while you prepare the cake.
3.    In a large mixing bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the oil and sugar until well combined.
4.    Add the eggs one at a time and beat well until fluffy
5.    Beat in the vanilla and lemon rind.
6.    In separate bowl, fold together flaked carrots, drained pineapple, chopped walnuts, and raisins - set aside.
7.    Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and salt.
8.    In stages add (alternating), dry ingredients, butter mixture and carrot mixture-beginning and ending with the dry mix. Stir (don’t beat) after each addition just enough to combine. Don’t overmix! 
9.    Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan and bake until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, 55 to 60 minutes.
10. Remove from the oven and cool on a rack.

Frosting and Serving

  • Beat the butter and cream cheese with an electric mixer until creamy.
  • Beat in the lemon zest and lemon juice.
  • Gradually beat in the confectioners’ sugar until the frosting is a good consistency for spreading and is to your taste. (If your confectioners’ sugar is lumpy it’s a good idea to sift it.)
  • When the cake is completely cool, spread the frosting over the top.
  • Rest cake for 1 hr. before slicing



Amanda touches:
Decorate exuberantly with marzipan and sugar paste ornamentation.
(makes a great breakfast!)

Notes:
You can also make this a layer cake by baking the batter in two 9-inch round cake pans. They will take less time to bake, about 30 minutes. The recipe makes enough frosting for a layer cake. The walnuts can be omitted, but why would you do that?

 

Prep time:  60 mins
Cook time:  60 mins
Total time:  2 hours
Serves: 12 

*Adapted from Moosewood