I was planning to wait and post this recipe closer to Easter. But as you all know, I seem to have zero patience when it comes to sharing recipes I’ve made that I really love. And carrot cake happens to fall in the category of recipes I really, really, really love. So without further ado, I present to you a very humbly-named classic:
The BEST Carrot Cake.
Well, at least it’s the best in my opinion, as I am a total purist when it comes to carrot cakes. That’s right. I’m one of those people who does not want to see any nuts, raisins, pineapple, applesauce, or (heaven forbid) carrot substitutes in my carrot cake. Instead, give me a perfectly spiced, moist cake made with a heaping mount of freshly-grated carrots and lots of homemade cream cheese frosting. And I will be a very happy carrot-cake-eating camper.
(Ok, ok, though — if you happen to adore nuts and/or raisins in your carrot cake, we can still be friends. I’ve included an option in the recipe for how to add them in.)
Still, in my world, this recipe is Da Best. I even tested it twice this week just to double check with my friends, and they wholeheartedly agreed. (And for the record, this one is 500x better than a box mix!) So here’s the how-to:
Some of you may remember that I caught the blogging travel bug last year and spent a good chunk of 2013 hopping from culinary adventure to adventure. This year, I have decided to spend much more of my time back home in Kansas City. But I was looking through photo albums the other day and was reminded again of what an amazing season it was. I still can’t believe I got to meet such wonderful people, visit so many inspiring places, and — of course — eat so much spectacular food.
One of those trips that I had yet to share with you about on here was my time at Culinaria, an awesome food and wine festival in San Antonio. I had thought this trip might be fun to share in the chilly winter, in case any of you are looking for a fab trip idea for this spring. Tickets just went on sale for Culinaria 2014, which will be held this May. And let me assure you, it is an epic food and wine festival to attend. Everything’s bigger and better in Texas, right? And this festival is no exception. From the incredible chefs and their culinary masterpieces, to the hand-crafted cocktails, to the events, to the scenic boardwalk, to the fine wines, to the CIA…San Antonio shows that they know how to throw a mega party with this festival. And we, at least, had a mega good time.
So for anyone who might be interested, here are a few photos (ok, I lie — I went photo-crazy on this trip and took about 100) of my time at Culinaria. If any of you have any questions or decide to go, definitely let me know. I think you will love it!
Wow, that week went by in a hurry! Or maybe I should say, a “flurry”, as we received two more rounds of snow in Kansas City since the last Friday Five. As tends to happen in the Midwest, though, we should be springing right back up from -15 degree windchills to 65 degree sunny days this weekend, and I can’t wait.
I have to say, though, this week was a pretty good one despite the bitter temps. Lent kicked off on Wednesday, and instead of giving up something this year, I decided to spend some extended time with the book of John, and also taking some intentional time each day to just give thanks. Actually, what I’m specifically trying to do is start and end each day by giving thanks because, quite simply, I can’t really think of a better way to bookend a day. So I’m taking the 40-ish days of Lent to see if I can get into that rhythm and let those specific times of thankfulness become a habit in my life and spill over into the rest of my days even more.
Pretty sure I had a jump-up-and-down, shout-for-joy, high-five-my-dog, ballet-leap-across-the-floor, I-am-Fried-Rice-Maker-hear-me-ROAR moment in my kitchen yesterday when I tasted this recipe. After about 15 years of trying, I finally found a fried rice recipe that met my standards. And I am positively giddy.
Oh friends. I think we have a winner here. Let me count the reasons:
This recipe is a riff on the this garlicky baked shrimp (a longtime favorite recipe on the blog). It’s made with the best Mexi combo ever (cilantro + lime, of course). It’s topped with a healthier crispy breadcrumb mixture (hail the Panko!). It only takes about 10 minutes to prep and 15 to bake (easy peasy). And it is crazy good. (CRAZY.)
This past Valentine’s Day, I decided to remake a golden oldie from the blog to share with my friends. Partly because it was super easy. Partly because it’s gluten-free. And partly because, well, it’s about as chocolatey as you can possibly get.
We’re talking about flourless chocolate cake, people!