Monday, May 21, 2012

Carrot Cake and a Red Balloon

Last week, my good friend Cecilia asked me to paint a mural on her staircase wall. Ever since, I've had five legitimate paid offers to paint people's rooms/nurseries/furniture. I'm FUNemployed as of 10 days ago, so this is sweet, sweet music to my ears. If you hear of a job that involves solar physics, baking, astronomy outreach, mural art, and/or Excel spreadsheets, please do pass it along - I'm your girl. Back to Cecilia's wall...

Project 99 (minus 98) Red
Balloons was launched. The mural is based on the famous Banksy graffiti art of girl with balloon. I gave her long air to look like Cecilia and the cutest little red rain boots.

All the while, I couldn't help but want to rock out to the 80s classic 99 Luftballons (this will now be stuck in your head for the next three days. I'm sorry that I'm not sorry about it).

99 Luftballons

Hast du etwas Zeit für mich
Dann singe ich ein Lied für dich
Von 99 Luftballons
Auf ihrem Weg zum Horizont
Denkst du vielleicht g'rad an 
Dann singe ich ein Lied für dich
Von 99 Luftballons
Und dass so was von so was kommt...

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥  ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ 

We of course then had to take pictures of ourselves with the girl and help her get her balloon back. It was a great afternoon...

Carrots with leafy tops make me almost as giddy as Cecilia was when I completed her project. There's something happy, wholesome, and genuine about carrots that don't come in plastic bag. These were on sale at the market, so I had the perfect excuse to make a carrot cake.

This carrot cake is moist, dense, and flavorful. And, you know, it's "healthy" because it has a vegetable in it... Never you mind that the recipe is from Paula Deen, the butter queen... 

I've used this recipe to make cupcakes in the past (these carrot cake basket cupcakes) and will continue to use it in the future. I simply shred the carrots in a food processor instead of using a cheese grater and I add pecans to the frosting instead of the cake, but you could easily add pecans, walnuts, raisins... to the batter. Make it your own. This is the kind of cake that quickly becomes a classic staple in your recipe box. Enjoy.

Carrot Cake
Paula Deen

yields two 8-inch round cakes (I made one very tall 8-inch round cake)

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
4 eggs
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
3 cups grated carrots

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease and flour round pans. Line bottom of the pans with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Add eggs and vegetable oil. Using a hand mixer, blend until combined. Add carrots.

Pour into pans. Bake for approximately 40 minutes. Remove from oven and cool for 5 minutes. Remove from pans, place on waxed paper and allow to cool completely before frosting.

Pecan Cream Cheese Frosting

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup chopped pecans

Add all ingredients, except nuts, into a medium bowl and beat until fluffy using a hand mixer. Stir in the nuts. Spread frosting on top.

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  1. Carrot Cake is my all time favorite type of cake and this one looks so delicious! That mural is really nice! ^_^

  2. Good recipe, made easy. Beautiful work and great idea on the wall.

  3. The mural is amazing!!! You did a wonderful job. The cake looks fantastic to.... you can't go wrong with carrot cake. :)

  4. this looks wonderful, I LOVE carrot cake, and your painting is awesome...i wish I was artistic

  5. I love the balloon pictures! So cool! And my husband would loveeee the carrot cake!

  6. I've been looking for a good carrot cake recipe. Glad you found a side job too! Congratulations on making the foodbuzz Top 9!

  7. GORGEOUS!!!! I love carrot cake. Your art work is Banksy inspired right? Moo x


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