Saturday, January 30, 2010

convert-you carrot cake

(for an 80's themed birthday party!) named because if you don't like carrot cake, this will make you a convert. it made me a believer in the goodness of carrot cake! it's adapted from this recipe. i made it gluten-free for a friend's birthday just by substituting gluten-free all purpose flour. easy peasy! (disclaimer: i'm no expert on GF stuff so just changing the flour might not make it 100% GF.) i'm sure that the oil could be reduced- this cake turned out very moist. i didn't want to risk it, but next time i'm going to try cutting it by at least 1/4 cup.

* 4 eggs
* 1 1/4 cups vegetable oil
* 1 cup white sugar
* 1 cup brown sugar
* 2 cups all-purpose flour or GF all-purpose flour
* 2 teaspoons baking soda
* 2 teaspoons baking powder
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
* 3 cups grated carrots
* 1 cup chopped pecans

* 1/2 cup butter, softened
* 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
* 4 cups +/- powdered sugar
* 1/4 cup milk +/- (as much as needed)
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* pinch of salt
* 2 tbsp lemon juice

-Preheat oven to 350'. Line a 9x13 inch pan with parchment paper.
-Beat together eggs, oil, and sugars. Mix in flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Stir in carrots and pecans. Pour into pan.
-Bake 40 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.

-For Frosting: Whip together butter and cream cheese until light and fluffy. Add in sugar, lemon juice, salt and vanilla. If it's too thick, add milk. Beat until it's at the spreading consistency you need. You can stretch this frosting out by adding more sugar and milk.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

my perfect brownies

these are fudgy and rich and i can't make them again anytime soon because they're dangerous. my jumping-off point was the recipe on the back of the box of unsweetened Baker's chocolate.

3/4 cup unsalted butter
5 squares unsweetened baker's chocolate
2 cups white sugar
3 eggs
1 cup white flour
1 packet starbucks via instant coffee
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla

-preheat oven to 350'.
-in a microwave-safe bowl, microwave the butter and chocolate together for two minutes. stir until melted.
-stir in sugar and eggs, the remaining ingredients.
-pour into an 8x8" pan lined with parchment paper. bake 30-33 minutes.
-let sit for 20-30 minutes before serving.

excellent with coffee ice cream.