Rochester, New York City Guide
Rochester, NY City Guide

© 1996-2015 Max Lent Communications




Max's California Carrot Cake


Once upon a time California carrot cakes were very popular, especially in California.  When we moved to Rochester, NY in the 1980s no one we dined with had ever heard of such a cake.  When we baked it for dinner guests or communal dinners the cake was always a hit.  It still is.

The original version of this recipe was published in a "Sunset Food Processor Cookbook".  The recipe was dropped from the new versions of the cookbook.  I've changed some of the quantities and techniques of the original recipe in an attempt to make the cake richer and more flavorful.

This recipe calls for the use of a food processor.  However, it can be prepared without one.  If you use a food processor it is not necessary to clean the food processor bowl after each step.


6+ each    Medium-size carrots
1+     Cup    Pecans, chopped
3  Cups  Flour, unsifted
2 teaspoon Baking soda
3 teaspoon Baking powder
3  teaspoon Cinnamon powder
1-3 Dashes Nutmeg
2  teaspoon Salt
2  Cups  Sugar
6  each Eggs, jumbo or extra large
2 Cups  Salad oil
1  20 ounce can Canned Pineapple chunks or crushed (unsweetened)

Shred carrots and set aside.

Coarsely chop nuts. Set aside.

With same blade process flour, soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Set aside in a large bowl. 

Process sugar and eggs until smooth and yellow.  Add oil and process for 15-30 seconds. Pour mixture over dry ingredients and mix with a spoon. Stir in shredded carrots, nuts, and pineapple. 

Pour mixture into a 13" X 9" X 2" baking pan and bake at 350F for 45 minutes. There may be some excess. Try making a few cup cakes with the extra batter.  Cool completely before frosting.

Orange Cream Cheese Frosting

It's the frosting that really makes the carrot cake wonderful.  Do not make substitutions.  No fat cream cheese will not produce satisfactory results.


2+  each Medium naval or Valencia oranges.  More zest makes the frosting taste more flavorful.
1 pound Cream cheese
1/4 pound  Butter (Unsalted)
2  teaspoons  Vanilla extract.  Real works better than imitation for this recipe
2   Cups  Powdered sugar 

Carefully peel or scrape the zest from the oranges being careful not to also peel the white tissue under the skin.  It's the white tissue that tastes bitter. Save the oranges for a snack while the cake is baking.  Cut cream cheese and butter into chunks.  Process zest and chunks of cream cheese and butter in until the mixture is smooth and the zest is finely chopped.  Add vanilla and sugar and process.  If you over process the frosting it will become semi liquid and will slowly melt off the cake at room temperature.



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