December 22nd, 2009

Olive Oil Carrot Cake, belated blog birthday post

carrotcake 1

One Year Old. (not the cake….the blog!)

I hadn’t intended for this post to be a dessert one, but suddenly, in the whirl of The Season, I realized that this little Good Food Matters blog had passed a milestone. A whole year old on the 16th. (!)

So, in honor of It–the persistence of its existence—and You, the persistent dear reader, I present this most delicious cake, recently made for our friends visiting from Italy, and their guests.

Now, there are carrot cakes, and there are Carrot Cakes. I took my long-time, well-proven recipe and tweaked it by substituting fruity olive oil for the common, neutral vegetable oil. What a difference!

The result was extraordinary—the richness of the olive oil enhanced and deepened the spicing of the cake, while retaining moist texture.

That, coupled with raisins, organic carrots which are sweeter, and you can effectively cut back on the sugar. (Had there been pineapple in the house, I would have included 1/2 cup of diced bits, too.) My original recipe called for 2 cups, but I found that 1 1/2 cups total, combining both brown and white sugar, was just right. However, if you like a sweeter cake, boost the sugar back up to 2. It’s okay.

This recipe will make two 9″ layers, or one 9″x13″ rectangle. For my friends’ party, I doubled the recipe to make this grand confection.

The cream cheese icing is rather silky, luxurious, and also not-too-sweet. Fresh lemon juice and zest, along with vanilla, enliven the butter-cream cheese blend. Be sure that both are soft before you cream them together—that way they will marry smoothly.

After the two are well blended, I add the lemon and vanilla. The flavors infuse better. Confectioners sugar is added last, which you are welcome to increase to your taste. I like that dulcet tang to come through, and so am judicious with adding the powdery stuff.

So, here’s to a blog birthday, and all the season’s best.

From here at Good Food Matters,
I wish you all love, health, and happiness,
and, of course,

good food and company.


yummy carrotcake slice

Olive Oil Carrot Cake

1 cup Olive Oil
3 cups shredded Carrots
1 1/2 to 2 cups Sugar—divide equally between Brown and White
4 eggs
1/2 cup Pecans
1/2 cup Raisins
2 cups All Purpose Flour
2 t. Baking Powder
1 t. Baking Soda
1 t. Salt
2 t. Cinnamon
1 t. Nutmeg
1 t. Ginger
1/2 t. Cloves

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and lightly coat cake pans.
Using a mixer, blend all the “wet” ingredients together. Add raisins and pecans, pineapple too, if you like. (These ingredients are optional. You can make it simply carrot.)
Add dry ingredients and mix until all are well-incorporated.
Pour into baking pans, and place into the middle of the oven. Bake for approximately 30 minutes, or until center tests done.

Allow to cool. Remove from pans. Let cool further before icing.
Note: This cake freezes well. It also stays moist for a long time, wrapped, so you can safely make the cake in advance.

Cream Cheese Icing
12 oz. Cream Cheese, softened
4 oz. (1 stick) Butter, softened
3 T. (or more) fresh Lemon Juice
1 T. Lemon Zest
1 T. Vanilla
1 1/2 cups Confectioners Sugar

Using an electric mixer (I am fortunate to have a Kitchen Aid stand mixer–and I use the paddle attachment for this.) cream the softened butter and cream cheese together. Add lemon juice, zest, and vanilla and mix well. Add the confectioners sugar–about 1/2 cup at a time, mixing until smooth.

Taste for lemon and vanilla, as well as sweetness; add more as you see fit.

carrotcake 2

Posted in Desserts, Recipes

16 Responses to “Olive Oil Carrot Cake, belated blog birthday post”
  1. Christine@ Fresh Local and Best Says:

    Happy one year anniversary! The cake is stunning! I love all of the detail you put into it.

  2. ben frank from I Ate That! Says:

    oh, nancy, congratulations on your first year!!

    also, that cake sounds amazing. my mother-in-law’s birthday is the 26th and i think she would *adore* this cake!

  3. rachel Says:

    We must be in sync, what with clementines, pasta searches and now olive oil cakes. I have been experiementing with olive oil in my cakes for a while now so this fits in beautifully.
    Happy birthday and Happy Christmas
    heres to good food thoughtfully made, keeping expectations flexible and blog friends.

  4. K-Run Says:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY Good Food Matters! I look forward to many many more years of wonderful recipes. Thanks Nance!

  5. K-Run Says:

    Oh Yeah now can I have some cake!

  6. Fluffy Says:

    Happy Birthday! Thanks for all the awesome goodies, GFM!

  7. rhonda Says:

    Congratulations on one year! The recipes, the prose, the pictures………….YUM Ya’ll ;-)

    Thank you for this scrumptious blog!

    Happy Holidays…..


    ps… there is still some improvement that could be made at “good food matters”…..i’ve hinted many times the past year……….take out service!!!!

  8. marva Says:

    Oh wow! I didn’t realize it has been a year that I have enjoyed your writing as well as your recipes! Thank you! I will SOOO hope that you bring that magnificant cake in one Friday to Second Harvest! I so look forward to each blog of Good Food Matters! Have a wonderful holiday season.

  9. claudia @ ceF Says:

    i’m a fan. i’ve enjoyed the year very much.

  10. zoe Says:

    I loooove carrot cake! Happy belated bday too!

  11. goodfoodmatters Says:

    Thanks for all the good wishes, everyone!
    Enjoy the holidays, and then…onward!

  12. Maggie Says:

    Wow, Nance, hard to believe it’s been a year! I have surely enjoyed each and every blog – the writing and the recipes!!! Here’s to many more years of you indulging us! Congratulations & Happy holidays!!!

  13. Madeleine Says:

    I’m late in wishing GFM belated birthday merriment. Nevertheless, I would like to do so now. Happy, happy birthday!

    Like all the other loyal readers and recipe followers, I believe that this blog is a treasure. Keep it coming!

  14. Heather Says:

    Happy Birthday! Wishing you many more to come. This is the best cake – I know, I’ve had some!

  15. Leisa Hammett Says:

    Lovely! Congratulations on your blogerversary! I’ve not celebrated mine yet. Past due!

  16. virgin olive oil Says:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY Good Food Matters!I have enjoyed your writing as well as your recipes! Thank you! I will SOOO hope that you bring that magnificent cake in one Friday to Second Harvest!

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