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Belle Meade Carrot Cake

a specialty of Susanna Carter in To Whisper Her Name, a Belle Meade Plantation novel (and as seen on Talk of the Town, November 6, 2012)

This recipe is none other than Belle Meade Carrot Cake. Delicious! The Belle Meade Carrot Cake is an Alexander family favorite.

Ingredients for cake:

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 ¼ teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
4 eggs
1 ½ cups vegetable oil
3 cups grated carrots
1 ½ cups chopped pecans (optional)

In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Add eggs and oil. Mix with a mixer (or by hand, in Susanna’s case) until well blended. Fold in carrots and pecans. Pour into 3 (9-inch) round pans that have been greased, floured, and lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 40 minutes. Remove from oven and cool for 5 minutes. Remove from pans, place on cooling rack and cool completely before frosting.

Ingredients for frosting:

2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, room temp
1 stick butter, room temp
1 (16-ounce) bag powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¾ cup well chopped pecans

Combine all ingredients except nuts in a medium bowl and beat until light and fluffy. Fold in the nuts. Starting with the first cake layer, spread frosting on top, then add the second layer. Spread frosting on top, then do the same with the third layer. Spread remaining frosting over the entire 3-tiered cake. Refrigerator leftovers (if there are any).

OPTION: You can also make the cake in a 13x9 dish, cut generous portions, and serve warm with the cream cheese frosting "slathered" over. I love it both warm and cold. And don't you just love the word "slathered?" Especially when it comes to cream cheese frosting. Mmmmm…

Hope you enjoy, and thanks for reading! Be sure and let me know if you make this. I'd love for you to post a comment & a picture of your cake on my Facebook Page.

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