Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Easter and "Not Quite From Scratch" Carrot Cake

 Happy Easter Friends!

We ran around completely crazy yesterday: Church Easter Egg Hunt followed by Family Easter Dinner, followed by a sleepover for The Short Chic. With the Short Chic away, we enjoyed a rare night out at a fancy restaurant south of the river, and then ended our night with a near midnight trip to the store to avoid shopping on Easter. 

 My hope for Easter day was a low key day at home. My mother and a brother joined us. My Father-in-Law stopped by. I had envisioned a leisurely day at home with the windows open, the spring breeze blowing in, and lounging in my outdoor living space.  

The Husband fired up the old smoker for the first time this year. He smoked ribs, chicken, and brat's.
I made deviled eggs out of our Easter Eggs and my momma brought up some cheesy potatoes. I also felt  a carrot cake was the most perfect dessert for this Easter. 

I have come to realize something about myself. I am a semi-homemade kinda mom. I love to create yummy dishes for my family and friends but I also don't find myself wanting to reinvent the entire process.  A few of you who know me the best will refute this and remind me that I do occasionally go the whole nine yards. But, those are exceptions to the norm and not the norm. Sometimes a girl just needs to remind herself that she can do anything she wants to do!

Here is my "Not Quite From Scratch" Carrot Cake! I have to tell ya, it was amazing. The frosting was perfect. Just a touch of sweet to accent the spice in the cake. I did add walnuts, they can be omitted if you have a thing against them!

"Not Quite From Scratch" Carrot Cake

1 package yellow cake mix 
2 cups grated carrots 
1 cup Crushed Pineapple with juice
1/2 cup water 
3 eggs 
1/2 cup vegetable oil 
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts optional 
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon 

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour cake pan. I used two rounds. You can use whatever you would like.

Combine cake mix, carrots, pineapple with juice, water, eggs, oil, pecans and cinnamon in large mixing bowl. Beat at low speed with electric mixer until moistened. Beat at medium speed for 2 minutes. 

Pour into prepared pan. Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan.

I made a simple cream cheese frosting:

2 packages of cream cheese
6 T butter
1 1/2 t vanilla
5 cups of Powdered Sugar

The frosting was pretty soft and in hindsight I should have put it in the fridge for a while before I frosted the cake. 

I have very fond memories of Easter Sunday as a child.  I loved Easter Egg hunts. I loved getting up in the dark and attending sunrise church service. That is the feeling I strive to bring to my children every year on this special day. It is a day to rejoice. And today was a perfect Easter Day in a really perfect Easter Weekend. I hope you had a perfect day and enjoyed this Easter! 

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