What to do when carrots are exploding in the garden?! What to do when you come home with massive bunches from the farmers market?! What to do when you have braised and sautéed and made salad and still they come?!
At our house we finally succumb to the “zucchini complex”, a surreal dimension of our kitchen universe where prolific vegetables are turned into dessert, and dessert becomes part of the menu at every meal…
So come on over to the sweet side! Ur Mom says it’s OK!
1 pound carrots
½ cup diced fresh pineapple, mostly drained
¾ cup chopped toasted pecans
2 cups sugar
1 cup canola oil
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 ½ cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Grate the carrots. You will have about 3 cups.
Dice a few spears of pineapple. Pick up and leave the majority of the juice behind on the cutting surface.
Toast nuts if needed by putting them in the oven for about 5 minutes, until the nuts release their fragrance and look barely browner. Chop.
Butter generously a bundt pan. Flour the pan and tap out excess.
Beat the sugar, oil and eggs together in the bowl of an electric mixer until mixture turns a smooth light yellow. Add the vanilla and mix through.
In another bowl whisk together the flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt.
Add dry ingredients to the mixing bowl and mix until blended. Batter will be thick and fragrant. Remove from mixer and fold in the nuts.
Time for the produce. Fold in the carrots and the pineapple.
Pour batter into prepared pan.
Bake 45 – 50 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. Begin testing cake at about 40 minutes.
Remove cake to a cooling rack, and allow to cool completely in the pan.
While cake is cooling, (takes about 1 ½ hours), assemble ingredients for Cream Cheese Glaze.
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
3 – 4 tablespoons milk, at room temperature
Turn the cake out onto a wire rack so glaze has somewhere to go if it drips…
In electric mixer, beat the butter on medium to medium high until it is creamy and pale yellow. Beat in the cream cheese until smooth.
Add the powdered sugar and the vanilla and beat until blended, scraping down the sides of the bowl a few times.
Add 2 tablespoons of milk and blend. Check consistency, and add remaining milk a little at a time until glaze is smooth and spreadable and running thick.
Drizzle thickly over cooled cake. It will dry smooth and set in place, but not hard.
Serve up a few pieces for a “veggie” snack; cover and refrigerate the rest!
Adapted from a recipe by Ina Garten.