It’s fall, y’all. And that’s a most beautiful thing.
Now, here in Austin, Texas, fall is less like the “transition to winter” season I grew up with, and more like the beginning of a four-month period starting in maybe November where Starbucks has specialty drinks and the lakes are chilly. There’s still plenty of warm sunshine, and Chacos are still worn in abundance. The air conditioner may have to be employed to keep the house from overheating when the fireplace is used. It’s all good – because it’s fall, y’all!
Because it’s fall, and because in just a few days it will be Thanksgiving, it’s time for some happy thankful things. My list is long: my amazing, getting-bigger-all-the-time family, my incredible, stick-closer-than-a-brother friends, the refine-me-not-define-me moments I hope to never take for granted, the love of a Savior that is more real than real could ever be, the lessons learned in the everyday, the beauty of birdsong in the early morning, the unbelievable gift of being able to be an advocate for the discarded, and the sheer crazy-happy that comes in kitchen therapy.
I’m giving thanks for you today with Tennessee Honey Carrot Cake. If I could, I’d invite you all over to CasaRock to share some right now. We could swap stories and recipes and hold hands and pray together. I’d like that – a lot (I think I’ll add it to my “adventure list”). In the meantime, enjoy the recipe. Share it with those you give thanks for…like fall, that’s a most beautiful thing.
TENNESSEE HONEY CARROT CAKE
Makes 2 8” rounds, 1 9” X 13” sheet, or about 30 cupcakes. If you want to make mini-cupcakes, be sure to very finely chop the carrots, pecans and pineapple.
2 C. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
2 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
2 t. pumpkin pie spice
2 C. granulated sugar
1 1/2 C. vegetable oil
4 eggs, beaten
2 t. vanilla (Mexican vanilla, if you’ve got it)
2 C. grated raw carrots
1 (8 oz.) can crushed pineapple, very well drained
1 C. chopped pecans
1/3 C. Jack Daniels Tennessee Honey
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices.
Mix together the sugar, oil, eggs, and vanilla; then add to flour mixture. Stir in carrots, pineapple, pecans and Tennessee Honey.
Bake in prepared pans for 30-45 minutes, or until a tester in the center comes out clean.
TENNESSEE HONEY CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
2 sticks butter, softened (use one stick salted and one stick unsalted for best results)
8 oz. soft cream cheese
1 T. Tennessee Honey
1 regular bag confectioners sugar (use pure cane sugar for best results)
1 to 2 T. heavy cream
Combine butter, cream cheese and Tennessee Honey in mixer, blend well. Add confectioners’ sugar gradually, blend well. Add heavy cream to create a lovely fluffy consistency.
If you’d like to try Tennessee Honey in a lovely little drink, or want more sweet treats for Thanksgiving, check out the Honey Bear on Susie Davis’ blog!