Carrot Cake Loaf (& sweets)

‘Bout time I earn my keep around here.

I’m embarrassed at how long it’s been since I’ve posted a baked good of some kind.

Lately, I’ve been more into main courses and side dishes than anything. A gal can’t live on cake alone, after all.

Lord knows there’s been no shortage of sweets in my life, though. I eat dessert/something sweet nearly every day. Lately though, it’s been ice cream topped with cinnamon toast crunch (trust me on this) or those mini chewy M&M cookies from the grocery store.

On occasion, it’s also been a piece of carrot cake from work.

There’s a lovely woman at work that does all of the baking. It is not me. I was hired to bartend, not to bake. I tell customers that on a weekly, if not daily, basis (inevitably after they see my tattoos and then glance at the pastry case). I have no desire to usurp her territory and I’m enjoying a break from professional baking. That, and she makes a damn fine carrot cake, arguably better than mine.

Until now.

This is the best carrot cake I’ve ever made – moist (hate that word, but it’s so true), slightly spicy, delicately sweet, I covered the whole loaf (yay for no stacking layers) in a swipe of orange scented cream cheese icing to seal the deal.

Carrot Cake Loaf

1 ¾ cup flour

½ tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. salt

½ tsp. ground cinnamon

¼ tsp. ground allspice

1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg

½ cup granulated sugar

½ cup brown sugar

¾ cup canola oil

2 large eggs, at room temperature

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 pound carrot, peeled and shredded

1/3 cup pecans, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8×4 loaf pan with parchment paper and spray with baking spray, set aside.

Whisk together the flour, baking soda, powder, salt, and spices, set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment whip the sugars and canola oil together on medium until light and fluffy – about five minutes. Scrape down the bowl as necessary to ensure an even mix.

Stir in eggs, one at a time, mixing well to ensure all ingredients are incorporated. Stir in vanilla extract.

With the mixer on low, slowly add the dry ingredients, mixing until just combined.

Stir in the shredded carrots and pecans by hand, scraping down the bowl to ensure ingredients are fully incorporated.

Pour into prepared pan and bake in preheated oven for 75 – 80 minutes, rotating pan halfway through.

Remove from oven and cool on rack to room temperature.

When cake is cooled, cover with a generous dose of orange cream cheese icing (a quarter batch of this recipe will suffice).

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