It was one of those miserable, early March days. You know the kind; damp, chilly with steady rain falling for hours on end. Looking out the window only revealed varying shades of gray; gray sky, gray trees, gray streets, gray gardens, gray, gray, gray.
Scott and I were working on our computers in the living room, not wanting to leave the warmth of the fireplace, when suddenly the doorbell rang. Scott opened the door to see the UPS truck speeding away; and you’ll never believe what the man in brown left on our door step! (Hint – suddenly the day became much brighter.)
It was a box from KitchenAid, a BIG box. I knew exactly what was inside, and couldn’t wait to tear it open.
I guess you could call me a KitchenAid girl, since I’ve used so many of their appliances (stand mixer, dishwasher, refrigerator, blender and food processor) for years. They’ve been amazing workhorses in my crazy little kitchen, and I’ve loved each and every one of them. So when the kind KitchenAid folks offered to send me a super-duper, brand-spankin’-new, fancy-dancy, Empire Red (matches my kitchen!) food processor… I was pumped!
There’s a funny story about me and food processors. Years ago, Scott bought my first one as a birthday present. I was so thrilled with the little machine that I stayed up most of that night. By the time Scott woke up in the morning, I had shredded, diced, sliced, chopped and pureed every fruit and veggie in the house. All the nuts in the freezer had been transformed into nut butters and every block of cheese was neatly shredded and stored in zippered bags. I just kept staring at the thing in amazement, as it performed one task after another with ease.
I felt a bit of deja vu, as I opened the box to check out my new machine. My mind was already spinning with all the ideas of the fun I’d have with it, and I was thrilled to get acquainted with my new friend. This deluxe version has some really cool features that I haven’t had before – it has the option of both a high and a low speed, which makes a huge difference when processing certain foods.
It also has an awesome slicing featured called Exact Slice, which allows you to make precise slices exactly the size you want, from paper thin to thick and chunky.
And last but not least; the dicing attachment. Wow! I love making soups and salads with lots of diced veggies, but it usually takes forever to get them all chopped up by hand. With the dicing attachment, it takes only seconds. I know I’ll be using this feature all the time.
Although I’ve used my food processor for all kinds of kitchen tasks, I thought it would be fun to explore some new ways of putting it to work, so I started doing a little online research. I was quite intrigued with some of the recipes I found for making cake in the food processor. Cake, really? I had a hard time believing a cake whirled up in just a few minutes would be as good as a traditional stand mixer one.
So, I decided to give cake whirling a whirl since Emmy, our youngest granddaughter, had a birthday in March. It was easy enough, and when I served the cake, I didn’t say a word about how it was made… until the rave reviews started rolling in, that is. Everyone loved the cake and thought it was one of the best chocolate layer cakes, “ever”!
Now I was on a roll, so I did some more research on food processor cakes. I came upon a somewhat strange one, simply called Consumer Reports Carrot Cake. The article explained that, quite a while back, when Consumer Reports did a review on food processors, they included this cake recipe in the article. I probably would have passed right by it, except for this statement: “‘This is all they want for their birthdays’, Nelson (the woman who originally discovered the recipe) said of her six grandsons.” Anytime I hear a proclamation like that, my curiosity is quite peaked, as I’m pretty certain it’s going to be a great recipe!
So I made it. And then made it again. And again. And again. And at least two more times. I made bundt cakes, layer cakes, cupcakes and loaf cakes, all with this same recipe.
It’s so easy and, oh my goodness, so delicious!
If I have all of my ingredients out and measured (mise en place), I can honestly, thanks to my wonderful KitchenAid food processor, have this cake whipped up and ready for the oven in less than five minutes. Seriously!
Just in case you think I’m spoofing you, I had a little friend help me put my latest rendition together. She’ll show you – it’s not only easy, but fun too!
Wanna hear the best news of all? You have the opportunity to win one of these amazing, super-duper, brand-spankin-new, fancy-dancy, Empire Red (or whatever your color of choice is) food processors. KitchenAid is sponsoring a giveaway here at The Café. Wouldn’t you love a big KitchenAid box on your front doorstep? And look at the cool colors! Which one do you like?
Just follow the Rafflecopter prompts below to enter! There are opportunities to enter the giveaway five times.
P.S. One last thing about the cake. It’s delightful on it’s own, or just with a sprinkle of powdered sugar, but I’m also including the recipe for a Buttermilk Glaze, which is stirred together and then reduced a bit in the microwave. After the cake has cooled slightly the glaze is brushed on, leaving a shiny, sweet layer of deliciousness as it dries.
Disclaimer: I was given a KitchenAid Food Processor, but not compensated monetarily for this post. It was not a requirement by KitchenAid to write a post. All opinions are my own.
This giveaway is open only to residents of the United States.
THIS GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED
- For the cake:
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup mild-flavored vegetable oil such as sunflower oil or canola oil
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 pound carrots I like to use the baby carrots which are already peeled but any type of carrots is fine.
- ¾ cup pecans
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 cup shredded coconut
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoons cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon cloves
- ½ teaspoon ginger
- For the buttermilk glaze:
- ¼ stick butter
- ¼ cup sugar
- ⅛ teaspoon baking soda
- 2 tablespoons buttermilk
- 2 teaspoons maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Spray a 10-inch tube pan or Bundt pan* with baking spray. Alternatives - spray 3 8 or 9-inch cake pans with baking spray and line the bottoms with parchment paper. You can also make cupcakes - line 36 muffin cups with cupcake papers. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Add the eggs, oil and sugar to the bowl of a food processor. Process for 1 minute until smooth.
- Slowly add carrots and pecans through the tube. When they appear to be fully grated, remove the lid and add flour, coconut, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Replace lid and pulse four times, just until dry ingredients are mixed. It's okay if there is a little flour still on the surface and at the edges. Just mix a little by hand until flour disappears.
- Pour batter into the prepared pan/s and place in oven. Immediately reduce temperature to 375˚F. Check cake after 30 minutes (cupcakes and layer cakes after 20), continue baking until cake is firm when lightly touched in the center and a toothpick inserted in the cake comes out clean, total of 35-50 minutes for a bundt cake, closer to 30 for layer cakes, and 20-25 minutes for cupcakes.
- Cool in pan/s for 15 minutes then invert onto cooling rack. Brush with glaze and allow to cool completely before moving or cutting.
- For the glaze:
- If desired, make glaze after cake is finished baking. Place all ingredients in a large (be sure it's large as mixture will bubble up) microwave-safe bowl. Cook for 1 minute on high then stir well. Return to microwave and cook another 3-4 minutes until glaze is beginning to thicken. Brush hot glaze on cake with a pastry brush. Try to cover all of the surfaces of the cake. Allow cake to cool completely.
One last note: if your food processor is less than 12 cup capacity, I would make it up to the point where the dry ingredients are added, then transfer to a bowl and stir in the flour by hand.