Much to my disappointment, I went to my cookbook shelf and I was missing one. I was missing my hodgepodge binder. I think every woman has one. It’s the place where we place random recipes that don’t have a home. The recipe from Aunt Sue or that lady from church. Mine is a lot like that. I’m sure it’s tucked away safely in a box somewhere, but for now, I miss it.
I miss it, because it has my copy of my Mom’s carrot cake. I can’t remember exactly when she gave me the recipe, but it was a long time ago. Right about the time that my food habits changed and I became a much healthier eater, probably about 15 years ago.
The first noticeable change was the addition of pineapple, which was a little strange to put in carrot cake at the time. It made the carrot cake so moist and sweet. It had about 1/2 of the sugar that regular cakes call for and I welcomed that. I am not a fan of sugary cakes. It also had spices. Ginger, cinnamon, and cloves – 3 of my favorites. And then to top it off, raisins and walnuts. It gave the carrot cake depth and complexity, it wasn’t just a cake, it was full of nutrients.
I haven’t made it in a while, but I used to make it regularly. The recipe was for a cake, but I rarely made the cake, it was either cupcakes (more like muffins) or mini cupcakes. I know cream cheese frosting is traditional as well, and I did that for a birthday once, but I prefer the glaze.
This is about as close to re-creating it as possible, without the original recipe. The first words from the first taste of my first child was “oh my goodness, this is good”. Yep, I think it will work.
Start with 2 cups of shredded carrots. Do it yourself, not the preshreds in the grocery store. Your cake will have more moisture and it really doesn’t take long.
I used a 8 oz can of pineapple and while other recipes may tell you to drain the juice, why waste it? I keep it in.
I always have little helpers. This one decided to smash the egg. Thank goodness for my wisdom of not letting her drop the egg directly in the bowl. We went fishing for shells. I guess it’s good that we’re not gifting this batch to someone else.
I love the combination of cinnamon, ginger and cloves. Cloves is such a powerful flavor, but I love it. I always add an extra sprinkle.
And time to mix.
I fill it anywhere from 1/2 to 3/4 full. You can use liners if you are planning on taking these somewhere. These are for us, so why waste the liners. Spray the pan good if the batter is going directly into the pan.
Make the glaze after they have cooled and drizzle on the top. A little goes a long way. I don’t use too much.
- 2 cups carrots, finely shredded
- 1 (8oz) can of crushed pineapple in 100% pineapple juice
- ½ cup raw or white granulated sugar
- ½ cup packed brown sugar
- 3 eggs
- ⅓ cup canola oil
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground dried ginger
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon cloves
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- 2 Tablespoons maple syrup
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
- Spray a 12 count muffin/cupcake tin
- In a large bowl, add shredded carrots, pineapple, both sugars, oil and eggs
- In a small bowl, mix the remaining ingredients
- Add the flour mixture to the wet mixture and stir until just combined
- Spoon into baking tin and bake for 15-17 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- While the cupcakes are baking, mix the ingredients together for the glaze and set aside.
- When the cupcakes are cooled, drizzle with the glaze.