Carrot Cake II

Hello!

Yes– I’ve posted a carrot cake recipe before. A recipe that I absolutely adore, but this carrot cake recipe is also something special.

This recipe is different from the previous one because it includes brown and white sugar, a creamier frosting base, and a softer texture. If you’re between the two recipes, I’d look at the ingredients to see which recipe accommodates the ingredients that you have on hand.

Anyway, now let’s talk. June has flown by. It’s almost over, and I’m sad. Sad because as the summer goes, so does this unwavering freedom. I’m being dramatic, but the future scares me. There are so many “what ifs” and uncertainties in my life. I don’t know exactly what I want to be, where I want to go, and what will happen; this is incredibly frustrating because I’m a planner. I like to know exactly what’s going on.

This cake, however, is the answer in times of uncertainty. It inundates even the most lost soul with some serenity. I love being overly-dramatic with my writing. All of this translated: make this cake, you won’t regret it.






YIELD: 8-10 PREP TIME: 15 minutes

BAKING TIME: 30-35 TOTAL TIME: 45 minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups AP flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1-1/4 cup oil
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs (5 small eggs)
  • 3 cups grated carrots
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1-1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup nuts (or any other desired decorations/topping)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 and apply parchment paper and grease cake pans.
  2. Whisk together flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
  3. In another bowl, combine oil, sugars, and vanilla.
  4. Then, add eggs one at a time to the oil-sugar mixture.
  5. Add dry ingredients in three parts to the wet ingredients until batter forms.
  6. Fold in carrots and place batter equally in both cake pans.
  7. Allow cake to bake until center springs, which should take about 30 to 45 minutes
  8. Once done baking, allow cakes to cool for 15 minutes then remove cakes and parchment paper and allow to cool some more.
  9. To make frosting: beat cream cheese until fluffy batter forms, add in powdered sugar until fluffy, and then add whipped cream on medium speed for one minute.
  10. Frost cake (once cool), decorate, and enjoy!

NOTES:

  • If you don’t have both sugars– substitute the one you have for the other.
  • You can cover the whole cake with frosting. I didn’t, however, because I made this for some who likes naked cakes.
  • Slightly Adapted From: here

I hope you guys are having a wonderful June– that isn’t too hot! I know the oven isn’t everyone’s go to in the summer, but I’m insane and use the oven year round.

❤️,

Hira

Red Velvet Poke Cake

SUMMER. TIME. It is finally that time of the year. Books, movies, board games, friends, popsicles, barbeque, free time. Oh, how I love this time.

It is the beginning of my summer break, and I am beyond excited. After some reflecting, I have decided that I really want this summer to count.

I want to explore, I want to cook, I want to spend time with those who matter most, I want to soak up every sun ray. I usually spend summer dawdling around wasting precious time sitting at home (which is not a bad thing), but this year I want to explore more of the Dallas-Fort Worth area. I want to visit restaurants, explore nature (even though I am scared of everything), and appreciate the things that surround my life.

Speaking of appreciation, you must appreciate this cake. Red velvet. Cream cheese. Sweetened condensed milk. All the best things life has to offer wrapped up in one cake is the only way I can put it.


YIELD: 16-20 PREP TIME: 15 minutes

COOKING TIME: 23-27 TOTAL TIME: 38 minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 8 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 5 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4 tablespoons red food coloring
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2-1/4 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar
  • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 3-1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Start by greasing a 9×13 cake pan and preheating the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Next cream together the butter and sugar, for about 3 minutes. Once combined add in eggs and mix until well incorporated.
  3. In another bowl, combine cocoa powder, vanilla extract, and red food coloring until a thick paste is formed. Add this cocoa-color mixture to the butter-sugar mixture and mix until combined.
  4. Slowly add buttermilk and flour to this mixture. Starting with half buttermilk and then half flour– until all buttermilk and flour are used.
  5. To finish the cake batter, add salt, baking soda, and vinegar. Mix for about 2 minutes or until well-combined.
  6. Pour batter into prepared cake pan and bake for about 23-27 minutes or until center comes out clean.
  7. Once cake is baked immediately poke holes into the cake with a fork. Then slowly evenly pour the can of condensed milk. Use a spoon to even distribute the condensed milk into the holes.
  8. Allow the cake to cool and then make the frosting by whipping together butter and cream cheese. Add powdered sugar until incorporated and then add vanilla.
  9. Spread frosting over cooled cake and decorate as desired. Store in a container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Recipe from

❤ ,

Hira

 

Classic New York Cheesecake

Thanksgiving is over. That was fast. To celebrate I finally have a recipe for you. You may be thinking that it’s too late for a cheesecake recipe- or how your waist line will handle the damage of thanksgiving night. However, this cheesecake is perfect for any time of the day (and year): breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack. It’s not reserved for your thanksgiving festivities.

Before I go into the recipe, I want to tell you about my thanksgiving. This thanksgiving was different from my past experiences. This year, we had a traditional thanksgiving.

You may be confused, so I’ll elaborate. Every year we have our own twist of thanksgiving with foods from my South Asian culture; however, this year we went all out with turkeys, potatoes, biscuits, stuffing, and maybe a few too many calories– for a traditional thanksgiving.

It was interesting. I love my cultural food. It’s flavorful, comforting, and down right delicious. This was definitely different, but I’m thankful for the opportunity to try a variety of new dishes.


The cheesecake recipe below is The Best Cheesecake. No joke. Make it for yourself, but make sure to share with guests because you will accidentally eat the whole thing if no one is watching.

YIELD: 12 PREP TIME: 30 minutes

COOKING TIME: 1 hour, cool for 6 hours TOTAL TIME: 7 hours 30 minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 15 graham crackers, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  •  4 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened 
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • Cool whip (1 cup)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Start by preheating the oven to 350 degrees and grease springform pan (check notes for other options).
  2. Mix graham crackers and melted butter and press to the bottom of the springform pan.
  3. Mix cream cheese and sugar, until smooth. Next blend together milk, eggs (one at a time); until just incorporated. Mix in sour cream, vanilla, and flour until smooth.
  4. Pour mixture into springform pan.
  5. Bake in oven for 1 hour. Then turn off oven, and allow cake to cool in closed oven for 5 to 6 hours.
  6. Chill in refrigerator. Before serve spread cool whip for clean finish.

NOTES:

  • I used a springform pan, but if you don’t own one you can use a pie pan (premade graham cracker crust).
  • You don’t have to finish with cool whip, I just like the smooth top produced with it.

Slightly adapted from: here

Happy Thanksgiving, Friends! I am thankful for all of you. You have no idea what your comment, like, and follow does for me.

❤️ ,

Hira 

Carrot Cake

Hi, friends! How was your Valentine’s Day? I celebrated my dad’s birthday by making him a cake… no, I didn’t eat most of it. 😉

So… yesterday my favorite author passed away: Harper Lee. Oh, Harper Lee was/is/always will be one of my favorite authors. She wrote the famous “To Kill a Mockingbird.” This was the first book that really opened my eyes to how literature can be truly amazing. Thank you, Harper Lee, for eliciting my love for books and making me a bibliophile.

On a lighter note let’s talk about carrot cake, or should I say a slice of happiness.

Let me tell you I use to have a strong aversion for carrot cake. Partly because it included carrots, and carrots are no place for cakes. But carrots can be included in cake, when the cake is slathered with lots of smooth creamy cream cheese frosting.


YIELD: 8-12 servings PREP TIME: 15 minutes

BAKE TIME: 30-35 minutes TOTAL TIME: 45 minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup canola or vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups shredded carrots
  • 1 cup of walnuts

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven 350 degrees.
  2. Grease pans (you can use a round cake pan 8-9, or a rectangle)
  3. In a large bowl whisk together eggs, sugar, and oil.
  4. In a separate bowl mix together dry ingredients.
  5. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients
  6. Add vanilla and carrots.
  7. Pout into pans.
  8. Bake for 30-35 minutes.
  9. Once baked completely allow to cool and frost with cream cheese frosting.

Happy baking! ❤

Chocolate Cake with Cheesecake Center + My First Blogiversary!

Today is my first Blogiversary! Ahh, I can’t believe I have been blogging for a year now. It’s crazy to think that last year on this day I posted my very first post. Yes, I am going to start with the sappy stuff.

Blogging has changed my life in so many ways. First it has connected me with so many wonderful people who share the same passion for baking I do. the blogosphere is so big, so I never imagined that I would be able to create so many friendships.  Blogging has also been a wonderful stress reliever. I am the type of person who gets frustrated and upset easily. When I’m stressed out I put a brave face on, but from the inside I’m breaking into small pieces. Blogging has mitigated my stress, when I publish a post and get positive feedback my face lights up (I really love hearing from you guys). Lastly (but certainly not least), blogging has made me open minded; seriously if I hadn’t started blogging I would never find zucchini in brownies acceptable, my once provincial mind has opened up and it’s the best thing ever.

If I had to choose my favorite thing about blogging it would be you lovely people. When I started blogging I thought my mom would be the only one reading (Hi Mom!). I often dreamed about other people reading my blog, and once other people did I couldn’t believe it. I mean real living breathing people find me interesting enough to read and sometimes even subscribe. So thank you! Your one like, comment, or view makes me happier than you know (Seriously I want to give all of you a cake).

I know I have a long way to go and that my blog may never be at the caliber of some amazing blogs. But this little space on the corner of the web is mine (and yours) and I’m proud of that.

And we’re done with the sappy stuff. Did I make you cry? To celebrate such a big milestone I made a cake with a cheesecake center, so I could have the best of both worlds cheesecake and cake (and cookies)!

Chocolate Cake with Cheesecake Middle

YIELD: 8 PREP TIME: 30 minutes

COOK TIME/ COOL TIME: 1 hour/ 4 hour TOTAL TIME: 5 hours

INGREDIENTS:

Cheesecake Center

  • 16 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 10 Oreo cookies

Chocolate Cake

  •  2 cups white sugar
  •  1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  •  3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  •  1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  •  1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  •  1 teaspoon salt
  •  2 eggs
  •  1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water 

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Start by making cheesecake. Combine cheese, sugar, and vanilla.
  3. Once fully combined add eggs.
  4. Pour into springform pan, and bake in oven for 30 minutes or until center has set.
  5. Allow cheesecake to cool for 3 hours in fridge.
  6. While cheesecake is cooling, time to bake the cake.
  7. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  8. Pour everything into a bowl, except boiling water.
  9. Mix everything together and then add boiling water.
  10. Place in round pan (or two pans) bake in the oven for 30 to 35 minutes or until set.
  11. Allow cake to cool.
  12. Once both cakes have cooled cut chocolate cake in half (or bake into separate pans at the beginning).
  13. Put cheesecake in the center of the two cakes.
  14. Frost cake with any frosting and decorate. 
  15. Cool in fridge until ready to serve

NOTES:

  • You can use a chocolate cake mix, if you don’t want to make the chocolate cake from scratch.
  • I put cream cheese frosting, but you can use any.
  • I decorated with mini chocolate chips and crushed Oreos.

Chocolate Cake recipe from here

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Happy Labor Day, everybody!

Classic Mini Cheesecake

As you probably know by now I LOVE cheesecake. Today’s recipe is for mini cheesecakes- classic mini cheesecake. In my opinion, classic cheesecake is a simple cheesecake base with a graham cracker crust. Most people like to doll up their cheesecake with pie filling or something crazy in top, but I like mine with simple whipped cream.

I think cheesecake is the ideal dessert for any get together. I mean there are so many options when it comes to cheesecake: red velvet, key lime, Oreo, strawberry, and so many more. Am I the only one who doesn’t like fruit cheesecakes? When I get a cheesecake platter I usually avoid fruity cheesecakes at all cost. My hands gravitate towards chocolate or turtle cheesecake. Anyway on to the cheesecake(s).

Mini cheesecake

Classic Mini Cheesecake

YIELD: 12 PREP TIME: 20 minutes

COOKING TIME: 15 minutes TOTAL TIME: 35 minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup of graham cracker crumbs
  • 4 tablespoons margarine or butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 16 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Whipped cream, optional

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Start by preheating the oven to 350 and place liners in muffin pan.
  2. Next mix graham cracker crumbs, margarine/butter, and 2 tablespoons of sugar.
  3. Press graham cracker mixture to the bottom of each liner.
  4. To make the cream cheese mixture combine 3/4 cup of sugar, cream cheese, eggs, and vanilla extract.
  5. Scoop mixture into a muffin pan and place in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until the center has set.
  6. Cool in the fridge for 2 to 4 hours or overnight. Top with whip cream, and enjoy!

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What’s your favorite place to visit? 

I love Florida and California, simply because they have Disney! I’m a Disney addict… seriously it’s scary.

Cream Cheese Frosting + Decorating Tips

So today is my Mom’s Birthday (Happy Birthday, Mama) and so it was obvious that I had to make her a (cup)cake. She requested Red Velvet Cupcakes and then I realized I hadn’t posted my cream cheese frosting recipe! So today’s post is about the simple, but oh so delicious cream cheese frosting. I’m very picky about frosting… too picky; I don’t like my frosting so sweet, that I have to scrape off all of the frosting and only eat the cake (*ahem* super market cupcakes). But this frosting is perfect the cupcake and frosting complement each other so well.

Also I have created an Instagram page! I was hesitant because social media is not really my thing, but I feel like Instagram is one of the easier social media platforms to navigate through and most of you guys have one. So please follow me my user name is: sprinklesofsweetness 

Cream Cheese Frosting

YIELD: 3 cups PREP TIME: 15 minutes

COOKING TIME: 0 minutes TOTAL TIME: 15 minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 12 ounces cream cheese, softened
  •  2 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS:

Beat butter and cream cheese, until combined. Next add sugar 1 cup at a time. Add vanilla and mix until smooth, enjoy.

NOTES:

  • Make sure all the ingredients are room temperature, or else the frostings consistency will be ruined.
  • Some people prefer sweeter frostings if that’s you keep adding sugar until you have reached the desired flavor.
  • If the consistency is not the way you like, then add milk to smooth it out.

Decorating Tips

  • If you don’t own piping bags (like me), then use a big zip lock bag. Start by placing frosting in bag and cut the corner.
  • Pipe by starting around the cupcake and then work your way middle, this makes a design on the cupcake.
  • Pecans (or any nuts) go really well with cream cheese frosting, so use them as a garnish.
  • Because cream cheese frosting is an off white color, food coloring will mix well and make different colored frostings.
  • If you want to distribute the cupcakes throughout the day, but don’t know how to wrap them without smashing the frosting here’s what you can do: grab 5 ounce cups (like the ones you get on airplanes) and place the cupcake inside. next wrap upwards with cellophane gift wrap. This makes the cupcake looks professionally wrapped and saves the cupcake.

Decorating ideas- cc image

What’s your dream birthday cake?

My dream cake would be a neapolitan cake with chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla all in one cake with lots of frosting and sprinkles for decoration. If someone gave me this type of cake I would just die ;).