Featured Fan Favorite: Carrot Cake Lamb.

A while back, I had been doing this Featured Fan Favorite thing – where someone finds a recipe on the blog that strikes their fancy, makes it themselves, and tells me all about it – including a picture of their results, Well, I’m happy to say that the Featured Fan Favorite has returned, and what better way to bring it back than with a reader’s very own Lamb Cake!

Juli Eberts created her Easter Carrot Cake Lamb based on the recipe from the blog!

it's b-ewe-tiful!

it’s b-ewe-tiful!

I especially love how she did the face – I may have to try it that way next year! Juli says, “The kids named him Sammy the Lambie and everyone loved the cake!  Thanks for the great recipe!”  (Sammy the Lambie!! I wish I’d thought of that!)

Thank you, Juli, for sharing your fabulous cake and for following Small Indulgences! xoxoI

I bet you’re now asking yourself, “How can I be the next Featured Fan Favorite? Why, it’s simple! Pick a recipe – any recipe from the blog, create it, and tell me all about it in an email to  – smallindulgencesbakery [at] gmail [dot] com. Don’t forget to include a photo! There’s nothing I love more than sharing the work of fans! (except maybe eating the work of fans.) 😉

 

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Once, Twice, Three times a Lamb-y.

DSC_1113

Yep, I did it again. For the third consecutive year, I’ve upheld the tradition of making the Lamb Cake for Easter, using the trusty old cast-iron pan that my aunt gave me.

where the magic happens.

where the magic happens.

I also kept up the tradition of making it a carrot cake, with cream cheese icing. The only thing I did change were the color of his eyes.

my brown-eyed lamb.

my brown-eyed lamb.

I went with the same jelly bean nose as seen on  Lamb #2; but I liked the larger ears Lamb #1 had, so I made sure to make them a little bigger this year. 

the better to hear you with.

the better to hear you with.

I will say this – this year’s lamb appears to be a tad “shaggy-er” than the previous two. Some lambs are just shaggy-er than others, I suppose.

shag-a-delic.

shag-a-delic.

Either way, the lamb once again survived the ride to Easter dinner at my parents house, and this year, his arrival was anticipated, and my mom had set up a special table, specifically for the guest of honor

it's a lamb in a box. on a table.

it’s a lamb in a box. on a table.

We didn’t finish the entire lamb, and I  again took the head back home with me – which I will definitely be sharing with others (the lamb has a big head).

Until next year….the Lamb will be baaaaack!

Return of the Lamb Cake.

Right before Easter last year, my Aunt gave me a bunch of baking pans, including a stainless steel “lamb pan.” I went on to discover that the lamb-shaped cake produced by this unique piece of bakeware is actually an Easter tradition, one which my Aunt embraced many years ago. So, last year, I decided that this tradition should experience a revival. And thus, I made my very first Lamb Cake, for Easter 2011.

where the magic happens.

So, being that the definition of “tradition” is an inherited, established, or customary pattern of thought, action, or behavior, i had to make the lamb cake again this year. And make the lamb cake, I did.

Lamb Cake 2: the sequel.

Personally, I think this year’s lamb cake turned out just a tad better than last year’s. I used the same carrot cake recipe (this one, doubled and minus the cinnamon chips), and the same cream cheese icing (however I’ve tweaked that recipe over the year so it’s a little better than last year’s). I decorated the body using the same star tip, and lined the bottom with jelly beans. I used a small jelly bean for the nose this year (last year I piped it), and this year I piped the blue eyes (last year I used mini M&Ms). But the biggest difference is that this year, I gave him a tail.

a tail of two lamb cakes.

For the tail, I used this stuff called, I kid you not, Fluffy Stuff. It was similar to cotton candy. It was perfect.

Anyway, for the second year in a row, the lamb cake was the belle of the Easter ball. The tradition has now officially been revived. Thank ewe.

Recipe Tuesday Afternoon (Delight): Cinnamon Chip Carrot Cake.

Full disclosure: I’m really proud of my carrot cake. It’s a recipe I created myself, and is pretty close to perfection, if I do say so myself. More than one person has gone as far as dubbing it “the best carrot cake they’ve ever had in their life.” That’s no small feat, as there are probably hundreds of different carrot cakes out there. What makes mine so special, you might ask? Well, it uses real carrots for starters. It also doesn’t have nuts in it. Instead of nuts, I use Hershey’s Cinnamon Chips. I believe these chips were a gift to us from the gods – I can’t resist eating them right out of the bag. I think I may have even eaten a whole bag once. But that’s all in the past. The chips provide the crunch factor like a nut would, without the allergies, and with the addition of melt-in-your-mouth cinnamon-y goodness. Top with cream cheese icing (recipe posted here), and add a border of more chips around the base.  This cake is guaranteed to make you the most popular kid in school (or in the office – it worked for me). By the way, this cake is small – it’s a 6 incher – the perfect Small Indulgence. 🙂

Cinnamon Chip Carrot Cake.

What you’ll need:

2 eggs

1 1/4 cups flour

1 cup sugar

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp baking soda

3/4 cups canola oil

2 oz carrots (peeled and finely chopped)

1/4 cups Cinnamon Chips (plus extra for decorating)

What you’ll do:

Preheat the oven to 350° F.  In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs until well combined. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour sugar, salt, cinnamon and baking soda. Pour them into the eggs and continue mixing on low speed. Add the oil and carrots and mix well. Fold in the cinnamon chips.  Grease two 6″ rounds, and divide the batter equally between them. Bake for 22 – 25 minutes.  Cool  completely on a wire rack before frosting. Share and enjoy with friends. 🙂

on the lamb.

I’m not sure if I mentioned this before, but my aunt was an amazing baker. She’s older now, and getting rid of many of her good ol’ baking tools, and being that I’m also into baking, she’s offering the majority of them to me, and I am giddily accepting each and every one, including a brand new mixer.

the good stuff.

While this is a wonderful thing, at the same time, it causes me to come to two somewhat sad realizations:

1. they just don’t make bakeware like they used to

2. people love stuff and we can’t take it with us, no matter how good it makes us feel to have it while we’re here.

So number #2 being the more esoteric of the two, let’s focus on #1, and even more specifically, the “lamb pan.”

nothing screams "cute" like a metal lamb.

The lamb pan weighs more than all the other pans combined. It’s stainless steel, I believe, and thus is prone to rust (however no one on the planet takes better care of their things than my aunt – she gave me white gloves that were like 30 years old, still in the original plastic sleeve and still spotlessly white). So needless to say, this lamb pan is rust-free. Out of all the pans in the lot, the lamb was the one that struck me the most. I HAD to bake the lamb. I had to prove to myself that I could do it, and make my aunt proud.

So, I bring you “Jeanine vs. The Lamb: An Easter Miracle.”

not baaaaad! get it?

I used a dense carrot cake for the innards, and some authentic buttercream for the coat. I’ll admit, I had a little trouble with the head, but it was nothing a little extra icing couldn’t glue together. I even somehow transported it, intact, to Easter dinner at my parent’s house (28 minutes away on some bumpy roads). Sadly, my aunt did not get to see it live. But I did show her a picture, and she grinned, rather sheepishly (that’s two!).