Chef Martin's Carrot Cake
2 cups sifted flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1½ teaspoons baking soda
1½ teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1½ cups sugar
1¼ cups vegetable or canola oil
2 cups finely grated carrot
8½ oz. can of crushed pineapple, drained
½ cup finely chopped pecans (optional)
3½ ounces flaked coconut (optional)
Cream Cheese Frosting
½ cup butter
8 oz. cream cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 pound confectioner's sugar, sifted
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and grease and flour three 9-inch round cake pans. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Next, add the sugar, oil, and eggs; mix well. Next, add the carrot, pineapple, pecans, and coconut. Blend thoroughly.
Distribute the batter evenly amongst the three pans; I like to use a ladle for the batter and fill each pan ladle by ladle to ensure even distribution without fussing with a scale.
Bake the cakes for 35-40 minutes. Be careful not to over-bake them! Because of the high amounts of sugar and add-ins, the cake can quickly crisp too much on the edges. Remove the pans from the oven and cool for 15-20 minutes before turning out onto wire racks to cool completely.
When your cakes are cooled, make your cream cheese frosting. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the butter, cream cheese, and vanilla.
Cream on low to medium speed. With the mixer on low, gradually add the confectioner's sugar, scraping down the bowl as needed. If it looks too thick, add a little splash of milk. If it's too loose, add more confectioner's sugar.
Frost the cake, spreading a thin layer between each layer of cake, saving the lion's share for covering the rest of the cake.