Low(er) Calorie Carrot Cake

Did you know that carrot cake has an incredibly high calorie content?  I won't mention exactly how high, but trust me it's high! And while I do believe in indulging I would much rather indulge in a larger slice of lower calorie cake than just one slice that comes with a heaping side of guilt.

So, for Easter I made a lower calorie version of traditional carrot cake from Cooking Light and doctored it up myself to bring the calorie content down even further.

While you might be doubting that low cal carrot cake is as good as the real thing everyone at the table had at least two slices and we all counted it as a serving of vegetable for the day!

  • Cake:
  • 10 1/10 ounces all-purpose flour (about 2 1/4 cups)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups grated carrot
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened
  • large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk-- To lower the fat content I made my own butter milk.  Simply take  1/2 cup of skim milk and add a teaspoon of lemon juice and let it sit of 10 minutes! I made my lactose free by using almond milk.
  • Cooking spray
  • Frosting:
  • 12 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup skim milk
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup toasted coconut

  • 1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  • 2. To prepare cake, weigh or lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups, and level with a knife. Combine flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, ground cinnamon, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add 2 cups grated carrot, tossing to combine.
  • 3. Place granulated sugar, brown sugar, and 6 tablespoons butter in a large bowl. Beat with a mixer at medium speed until combined. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla. Add flour mixture and buttermilk alternately to sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Spread batter into a 13 x 9-inch metal baking pan coated with cooking spray or I used 2 9 inch round pans to make a prettier cake. Bake at 350° for 28 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool cake completely on a wire rack.
  • 4. To prepare frosting, place softened cream cheese and next 2 ingredients in a medium bowl. Beat with a mixer at medium speed until fluffy. If making a layered cake, thinly spread the top of one cake with icing, then add the other cake on top. Spread frosting evenly over top and side of cake. Sprinkle evenly with toasted coconut.

The carrot cake was the perfect follow up to an easter lunch of ham, lobster stuffed deviled eggs, my momma's potato salad, stuffed jalapenos, AND a green salad.

Miracle: Baby survives tornado in Dunn, NC

The South was torn apart by tornadoes this weekend.  But my home state of North Carolina was hit the hardest and suffered the most damage and casualties.   We were lucky and had nothing more than heavy rain fall.

I heard this amazing story yesterday and couldn't help but share. I'm not sure if there is some deeper meaning but it did make me think about how miraculous event occur.

Jonathan Robinson with three-month-old Ayden in
 his arms. 
Jonathan Robinson could feel the wind from inside his trailer in Dunn, N.C. One of the 62 tornadoes reported in North Carolina over the weekend was headed his way.

He did what came naturally: the 21-year-old picked his cousin's three-month-old baby and ran to a closet. What happened next is simply harrowing. Hear Jonathan tell the story himself:

The force of the winds tore apart the trailer around him and ripped the baby out of his arms. Next thing Robinson knew he was digging out of the rubble.

More than 20 people died because of the storms on Saturday.

By some miracle, perhaps, Ayden, the three-month-old, survived. Robinson heard him cry and found that he was dusty and dirty, but without a scratch on him.

Story edited from NPR

For laughs

One tasteless sign spotted on a giant pile of hot peppers in Maiori, Italy.

Tupperware Needed

I just spent a while writing a brand new blog post and then all of a sudden


It randomly disappeared.  It was very disappointing but I'm going to take it as a sign that I should have chosen a different topic to write about... so instead of writing about myself traveling I'm going to write about myself cooking.  Totally different while still revolving around yours truly, love it.

Chris and I have been cooking up a storm this week filling our fridge full of goodies like hard boiled eggs, whole wheat pasta with broccoli and olives and these three goodies:

Hotter Than Hell Habanero Hot Sauce

Recipe and picture from www.chow.com

Healthy Honey Oat Muffins that we added cranberries to.  Gotta get your antioxidants y'all!
Recipe and picture from www.cooklikeachampionblog.com

Spicy Serano Vinegar to keep our taste buds burning!
Recipe and picture from www.eclecticrecipes.com

What have you been working on in the kitchen? And hey, eating leftovers counts too!

Thank you!

On Friday I found a fabulous surprise in my mailbox... a surprise all the way from Dubai!

I won a fabulous giveaway from Amy, a California girl who has moved to Dubai for several months.  She makes amazingly beautiful treats and posts about them at Playing House  and shares her adventures in Dubai at A Whole New World.

Amy sent me these fabulous spices straight from Dubai.

I can't wait to start cooking with them!  I'm planning to use the saffron in paella this weekend, coriander seeds in pickles this week, and I have a hundred more ideas running through my head!

Thank you again Amy!


I am so excited and ready for this weekend. No big plans in particular just hanging out, doing some house work, and spending some time out in this gorgeous spring weather!

Oh... and we're going to take down our Christmas tree.

Yes, you read that right. Our tree is still up. Whoops.

Have a great weekend y'all!

My life. My fridge.

Last week in the checkout line the cashier said "I was just about to ask if you guys were vegetarians but then I saw this ground turkey go through..."  And she wasn't off base at all, at least 80 percent of our meals are veggies and we have several meals a week that are vegetarian. We also don't eat anything processed or dairy-- C is lactose intolerant (sorry to tell the internet your deep dark secret sweetie!) and I'm basically allergic to processed food.

Back to the veggies and not eating animals-- this isn't because we have any huge views about eating meat, them having faces and feeeeeelings and such, but just because we like veggies.

We're weird. We like vegetables. We liked vegetables as kids. Aren't you glad you don't date us?

We buy the majority of protein and veggies at Sam's Club.  But Sam's is hella far away (25 minutes! Welcome to my first world life. This is one of my biggest complaints. I suck) and we only like to go about every 2 weeks.

So we try to supplement our fresh supplies with items from the local grocery store.  But, Chris and I are also cheap-- we'll shell out all kinds of money for fancy smanshy beer but so help me God if the grocery store is trying to charge $.62/pound for bananas. No questions asked. We're definitely sticking it to the man and driving to another grocery store. SO HA... take that Kroger!  In order to find the best prices on groceries we go to the local ethnic grocery store, the super mercado.  Yes, the music makes you want queso and enchiladas but the produce is cheap and fresh and there are all sorts of crazy items there that you never find in the regular boring white people grocery store.

So, at this point you're thinking "Jayyyyyy-zussssss, what does this have to do with anything? Is she just going to talk about her fridge the whole time?"

Yes, I am going to talk about my fridge the whole time.  But! *jazz hands* I'm also going to show you the inside of my fridge! Ohhhhh! Ahhhhh! Fridge!

Can you spot spot at least 5 different types of fruits and veggies here?

How about now? 

Or now?
However, I do LOOOVE condiments. I believe with my whole being that french fries only exist to be carriers of condiments.
Chris and I are currently in a battle to finish a gigantor tub of spicy brown mustard and are having mustard races.  At the time of this picture (oh, like a month ago. I blog at lightening speed y'all) I was kicking C's behind (see bottle on left) but then Chris came back with skill and determination and won at the last minute.  

Welcome to my life.

Veggies and mustard.

I know you're jealous.

So tell me... what's in your fridge? Do you have as many kinds of meat as I have veggies?