The Girl made a specific request for her birthday cake: carrot cake with no nuts, pineapple, or coconut. Years ago I had the perfect recipe for carrot cake. Labor and ingredient intensive, it had all those things. Drat. So, rooting around the internet, I found some tips on how to gussy up a store bought mix and make it taste homemade.
I didn't have 27 candles, so we added three candles to a 2 and a 4 from years' past!I took a box of Duncan Hines spice cake mix and dolled it up with:
1 extra egg
about a cup of applesauce
the oil it called for
buttermilk instead of water
a teaspoon of vanilla
a little extra ginger
1 1/2 cups finely shredded carrot
Then I baked it according to the box directions. I bought a cute $1 steel cake pan to make one the perfect size for a visit up to see her - the rest stayed at home with the boys!
The frosting was 1 stick of softened butter, a brick of softened cream cheese, 2 cups powdered sugar, and a little vanilla extract, whipped until smooth.
It turned out sooo good - spicy and sweet and moist with none of the things she didn't want...
Belated Happy Birthday, Coco. We love you lots!