Carrot cake is made around here only on Easter and if it's a special occasion where my husband requests it. This is a recipe I have used for the past few years that is so good, that I barely deviated from it (found here)...which is highly unusual for me. I'll share that with you, but more importantly, the Easter Bunny himself is something my grandmother always made during Easter. It's super simple, and the kids LOVE it! We always decorate with whatever Easter candies and whatnot we have lying around, so it doesn't require much work at all.
Best Carrot Cake
3/4 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup buttermilk
2 cups sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 (8 oz) can crushed pineapple, undrained
2 cups finely grated carrots (about 4 medium)
1 cup raisins
1 cup flaked coconut
Cream Cheese Frosting:
1 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
4 cups confectioners' sugar
2-4 T heavy whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- In a large bowl, combine eggs, oil, buttermilk, sugar, and vanilla.
- In another bowl, combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt; stir into egg mixture.
- Stir in pineapple, carrots, raisins, and coconuts just until mixed.
- Pour into two greased and floured 8-inch rounds.
- For two rounds, bake for 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- Cool on wire rack before frosting.
Since the cake is pretty easily put together, I didn't take any pictures of the process of making cake. Just a few tips with cakes that I always do. After I grease and flour, I line the bottom of my pan with parchment paper to ensure it never sticks. Before putting it in the oven, I hold the pan about six inches from the counter and drop it to release air bubbles.
For the frosting:
Cube the butter and cream cheese. Beat with 2 T of heavy whipping cream and the vanilla until smooth.
Add confectioners' sugar, one cup at a time until all mixed in. Add the rest of the whipping cream, 1 tsp at a time until desired consistency is reached. You want it creamy, smooth, and it should have a shine to it.
TO ASSEMBLE THE CAKE:
Once completely cooled, invert one of the rounds on a rack.
Using the tip of a sharp knife or a toothpick, trace two curved lines on the round to resemble a baseball. (That oops is why we trace first :D)
Once you have your lines even, using a sharp knife, cut along those lines.
I was out of cakeboards, so on the counter I laid out a baking sheet with parchment paper extended out to accommodate the size of the bunny. First, lay down the other cake round that hasn't been cut. Then take the right and left pieces of the cake you cut and place them above the other cake as ears.
Place the center cut piece at the bottom of it as the bow tie.
Frost and decorate as desired.