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Sam's Famous Carrot Cake

Reviewed: Aug. 17, 2013
Okay, I've baked this cake over 20 times and so I consider myself an expert on this recipe. (I always mentally thank "Grampa Sam" every time I bake it.) First of all, to "clwguy," who gave this recipe a 1-star rating: YES, LEAVING OUT THE PINEAPPLE WILL MAKE A HUGE DIFFERENCE IN THE RESULT! You can omit other ingredients (I myself forgot to add the coconut last month) and still have a great cake, but *not* the pineapple. Before baking this cake the first time, and even since, I've read through dozens of reviews of this recipe. Here's my advice, based on what I've read, plus my own experience: 1. CUT THE CINNAMON BY HALF, as others have suggested. (Adding a little nutmeg and/or allspice is a great idea.) 2. PECANS ARE PREFERABLE TO WALNUTS, which can often impart a bitter taste. Pecans are naturally sweet, and work much better in this recipe. 3. Consider OMITTING THE RAISINS. Lots of folks just don't like raisins, and in any case I believe they overwhelm the other ingredients. (I've left out the raisins for several years now, and all my friends are crazy about this cake.) 4. DON'T USE YOUR FOOD PROCESSOR to slice the carrots; they'll end up too long and stringy. Grate by hand -- it's worth it! 5. DIVIDE THE BATTER INTO TWO PANS, and test the loaves after 35 minutes. (One hour is way too long for this cake, and would account for a couple of the negative reviews I've read.) 6. Suggestion: try the "WHIPPED CREAM CREAM CHEESE FROSTING" on this site. Scrumptious!
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Whipped Cream Cream Cheese Frosting

Reviewed: May 6, 2013
This recipe is unbelievably good! I studied the comments, and ended up following the recipe exactly, BUT making sure to chill my beater and bowl in the fridge beforehand. My cream cheese had been sitting out for several hours, and so that was no problem. I also folded the two together carefully and then finished off with 30 seconds with the mixer, as one commenter suggested. It came out BEAUTIFULLY and was perfect for "Sam's Carrot Cake". I realize that one reason I normally feel guilty about carrot cake is that I have to leave the icing behind. No longer! Advice: I used regular (not confectioner's) sugar, and it worked very well. However, I was NOT piping, and frankly it didn't look stiff enough to pipe easily. I almost didn't use the entire amount of sugar because I thought it would be too sweet, but it wasn't. I followed the recipe exactly, and it's just the right amount of sweetness not to overpower the cake. So light and fluffy -- beautiful, really. Thanks for the great recipe!
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