Love Served Daily

Cooking up Smiles..Across the Miles


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Carrot Cake..A special celebration

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A big hello to all of you. Just in case you were wondering where have I vanished..here is something special to share with you. God has been really kind and has blessed us with a beautiful angel. My second daughter was born on June 9th, 2016. Our lives just got a lot happier, the big sister being the happiest of all. 🙂

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This carrot cake was made to celebrate her “1 month” completion and is therefore a very special one. Just in case you have never had a carrot cake before, let me warn you that it won’t taste like carrot. That’s the primary difference between baking with fruits and vegetables, A banana bread has an amazing flavor of the fruit but hide some zucchini in a bread and no one will ever know. Shredded carrots lend a beautiful color and texture to this cake and makes the cake very moist and delicious. A full serving of vegetables in a dessert..How awesome is that 🙂

 

So without wasting any more time, lets make this delicious carrot cake

Ingredients:

All purpose flour – 2 cups

Grated carrots – 2 1/2 cups

Eggs – 4

Sugar – 1 1/2 cups

Oil – 1 cup

Raisins – 1/2 cup

Baking powder – 1 1/2 tsp

Baking Soda – 1 tsp

Cinnamon powder – 1 1/2 tsp

Salt – 1/4 tsp

Vanilla Extract – 1 tsp

Cream Cheese Frosting:

Cream Cheese – 8 oz

Unsalted butter – 1/4 cup

Powdered Sugar – 2 cups

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F and lighty grease a 9 inch cake pan. Finely grate the carrots and keep aside.
  2. Mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon powder.
  3. Using an electric or hand mixer, beat the eggs until frothy and then add in the sugar and beat till the batter is thick and creamy. Slowly add in the oil and vanilla extract and continue mixing.
  4. Add in the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until just combined. Fold in the carrots and raisins.
  5. Bake for about 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let it rest for about 10 minutes before removing the cake from the pan. You can enjoy the cake as is or frost it if you like.
  6. Use an electric or hand mixer and blend together the ingredients listed under cream cheese frosting until smooth and well combined.
  7. Spread the frosting as desired and sprinkle with chopped pecans. Enjoy.

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So that is how I made this carrot cake to celebrate my daughter’s one month in our lives.

You never really know how happy someone can make you..until they come along. 🙂

Thanks so much for stopping by. Do let me know if you try this cake.

Love,

Ritu. 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Red Soup..With the goodness of tomatoes, carrots and beetroot

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Hello everyone. The most beautiful season is officially here. With such lovely colors all around, I find it so hard to focus on the road. I stop by every now and then to capture this beautiful array of colors around me. Check out this beautiful red tree I clicked yesterday, I stood there admiring it for good 5 minutes. New England is probably one of the best place to enjoy this beautiful season. If you have never been here, I highly recommend it, especially during the fall season.

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And with all this beauty, comes the first chill of the year too. The nights have gotten cold now which means its time to take out that crockpot and make some soup. This red soup is what I made today. With such gorgeous colors all around me, I couldn’t think of a better one. This soup was made on the stovetop but can definitely be cooked in a slow cooker as well. The soup combines the goodness of tomatoes, carrots and beetroot (or beets) and is pretty healthy if you leave out the cream. Its one of the most loved soup in my family and I am so glad to share this with you today.

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Here is how I make it:

Ingredients:

Oil – 1 tbsp.

Garlic cloves – 2, chopped

Onion – 1 small, chopped

Tomatoes – 3 medium, chopped

Carrots – 4 medium, chopped

Beetroot – 1 small, chopped

Vegetable stock – 1 cup

Green Cardamom* – 3

Cloves* – 2

Black pepper powder – 1/2 tsp

Salt to taste

Honey – 1 tsp

Butter – 1 tbsp.

Cream – 2 tbsp.

Croutons & Basil Leaves – for garnish

Method:

  1. Take a heavy bottomed, deep saucepan and heat up the oil. Add the cardamom and cloves and Sautee them for a minute. * You can leave out the whole spices if your kids do not like the taste.
  2. Add in the chopped garlic and onion and cook it for 3 – 4 minutes till the onions get a little color.
  3. Now add in the chopped carrots and beetroot and cook for another 4 minutes till the veggies get caramelized.
  4. Finally, add in the chopped tomatoes and cook for a few minutes until they start to soften up.
  5. Now add the vegetable stock, the salt and black pepper. Mix everything well and cover and cook till all the vegetable are soft and mushy. It will take about 20 minutes on medium heat.
  6. Finally, use a hand blender or let the contents cool down a bit and transfer the soup to a blender to make a smooth puree. You can strain this too if you prefer silky smooth soup.
  7. Bring the soup back to boil and add the butter and honey. The honey helps to cut down the sourness of tomatoes here.
  8. Let the soup boil for about 7 minutes on medium heat. Do a taste test here to ensure its per your preference.
  9. Finally, add in the cream, cook for a minute and turn off the flame.
  10. Serve hot with croutons and basil leaves. I have used mint leaves here for garnish. Use what you like. Enjoy this bowl of comfort and stay warm.
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So that is how I kick started my soup season. If you have a soup you really like, do let me know in the comments below and I would love to try it out. We have a really long winter ahead of us.
Thanks so much for stopping by.
Love,
Ritu. 🙂