So I bought a ‘dial’ scale the other day and literally I’m a terrible person. I’ve purposely set the dial to start in the negative pound range, so now when I step on the scale I am exactly 7 pounds lighter, always. The best part about this? Some mornings I totally forget what I’ve done and step on the scale and am damn proud that my two ‘midnight snack’ pb&j’s had zero affect on the l-bizzles.
Probably not something I should necessarily be proud of? But girls gotta do, what a girls gotta do. And sometimes that means you gotta “fake it until you make it”. However I’ll be faking it until I split a hole in my jeans. Now that will be a reality check. But until then….. bon appetite.
So being that I am like totally losing a trillion faux pounds right now, I decided I most certainly could afford to develop a new take on an ordinary Easter carrot cake.
Olive Oil Carrot Cake with a Whipped Cream Cheese Frosting & Bacon Caramel Glaze
This is the title that never ends, but also a title that I am totally okay with never-ending. Instead of “poppin'” bottles you’ll be “poppin'” buttons.
Ain’t no shame there baby. Do yo thang.
Olive Oil has a STRONG flavor. I mean, you’ll know right away that olive oil was used to make this cake. And it is incredibly rich and delicious IF you appreciate some good oil. If you are a little unsure, reduce olive oil to only 1 cup and add a 1/2 cup of vegetable oil. And if you really are afraid of using olive oil all together (then why did you click on this recipe?? kidding) use only 1/2 cup olive oil and 1 cup vegetable oil. etc. etc. etc.
Do not forget the crushed pineapples! Seriously. They literally bring this carrot cake to a whole new level. I have always used crushed pineapple in every carrot cake I have ever made and I swear by it. And so did my grandma. And that woman birthed 15 children, so I think she knows a thing or two about life. And more importantly, cake.
The cream cheese frosting is a lot lighter in sweetness than most frostings you are probably used to. When paired with the sweet and smoky caramel glaze, you need a nice balance to avoid a full on sugar high. So before you go adding more powdered sugar, first see how it tastes paired with a little bit of the glaze on top. I’m sure you’ll have NO problem doing many taste tests until you get it jusssst right 😉
Now for the caramel bacon glaze, all you need to do is cook about 2 pieces of bacon and reserve the fat to add into the caramel. If you have some bacon fat sitting in your fridge/freezer now is the perfect time to put it to good use. The bacon flavoring is subtle yet a total game changer for this drizzle. And I really feel like it brings this cake straight home.
Begin by preheating your oven to 350 degrees. Take two 8x2" round cake pans and grease. Cover the bottom of each cake pan with parchment paper, grease a little more and then dust flour into each pan. This makes it fully nonstick and allows the cakes to be removed with much more ease without ruining the shape.
In a large bowl add your flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg & salt. Mix together & set aside.
In a medium bowl add your eggs, olive oil, brown sugar, granulated sugar and vanilla extract. Whisk together until well blended. Next add your crushed pineapples and mix.
Add your wet ingredients to your dry ingredients and mix together.
Next fold in your shredded carrots until carrots are all mixed in.
Evenly distribute cake batter into both cake pans and level. Place in oven for 30-40 minutes, or until knife inserted in cake comes out clean.
Let the cake cool in pan on wire rack, and then once done cooling (about 1-2 hours) run a knife along the edge, turn over, and remove cake.
Next very carefully, using a serrated knife (easiest) slice the top part off of each cake to level cake completely (basically you are cutting off "the muffin top".)
Next add your icing to top of one cut side of cake. Turn other cake over onto frosted cake (so topside down) and then ice cake very lightly to create more of a "naked feel". You may add more icing if you would like. Cream cheese frosting recipe to follow.
Next pour over your caramel bacon glaze, starting at the edges to create a "drippy" look. And then adding the rest of the glaze to the top center of cake and smoothing over. Recipe to follow.
Sprinkle with processed walnuts and serve.
For the Frosting:
In a medium sized bowl, beat your cream cheese until it becomes fluffy.
Next in another bowl, whip your heavy cream until it creates a nice whipped cream.
Add your cream cheese to your whipped cream, as well as your vanilla & powdered sugar and beat until fully mixed together, creating a light and fluffy texture.
For the Caramel Bacon Glaze
In a medium sauce pan over medium high heat add your brown sugar, butter, heavy cream & bacon fat. Whisking constantly until sugar has dissolved. Lower heat to medium and continue to whisk often so sugar doesn't burn, for about 5 minutes.
Remove from heat, set aside at room temperature. Glaze will begin to thicken and then once cake is set pour on top.
This cake may be wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and frozen up to 3 months. Remove 24-36 hours before eating and let cake thaw in fridge. Remove two hours from fridge before serving.