My mother’s birthday celebration calls for another Paula Deen recipe to be prepared in the test kitchen here at Places In The Home. My mother loves- no, adores carrot cake except when she is all about a coconut cake. We bounce back and forth between the two, but tradition and memories are hard to compete with. My late maternal grandmother always made my mother a carrot cake for her birthday. Always. The gift of carrot cake was her trademark thing, so to speak.
As for her recipe for carrot cake?
Only the good Lord and Lucile knows.
She guarded that baby with her cake baking life. She never shared the recipe with anyone (that we know of). I always figured there are plenty of carrot cake recipes out there to be baked, so I did not give it a thought. Fast forward to present carrot cake recipe times where I wish I had it her recipe, but find delicious solace in Paula Deen’s Grandma Hiers’ Carrot Cake recipe. To simply say it is a mere substitution or simply just delicious does not do this carrot cake justice.
Grandma Hiers’ Carrot Cake
Butter, for pans
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pans
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups vegetable oil
3 cups grated carrots
1 ½ cups chopped pecans, optional
2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, room temperature
1 stick salted butter, room temperature
1 (16-ounce) box powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 3 (9-inch) round pans; Line bottom of the pans with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Add eggs and vegetable oil. Using a hand mixer, blend until combined. Add carrots and pecans, if using. Pour into prepared pans.
Bake for approximately 40 minutes. Remove from oven and cool for 5 minutes. Remove from pans, place on waxed paper and allow to cool completely before frosting.
For the frosting:
Add all ingredients, except nuts, into a medium bowl and beat until fluffy using a hand mixer. Stir in the nuts.
Spread frosting on top of each cake layer. Stack the cakes on a serving plate and serve.