This moist and dense cake is perfect for those who like their carrot cake with the works, including pineapple, raisins and pecans
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup butter, melted (1/2 stick)
1 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup golden raisins
3/4 cups chopped pecans
1 pound shredded carrots
3/4 cup crushed pineapple, well drained
8 ounces cream cheese (1 block)
1 cup butter (2 sticks), softened
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups powdered sugar
Optional decoration: 15 pecan halves
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour two 9-inch round cake pans, then line bottoms with parchment paper.
Using an electric mixer, beat together sugars, melted butter, oil, eggs and vanilla in a large mixing bowl until well mixed and batter lightens (approximately 2 minutes).
In a small bowl, sift together flour, cinnamon, soda, salt and nutmeg. Take 1 tablespoon of mixed dry ingredients and place in a separate bowl along with raisins and pecans then toss together to coat. Set aside.
Gradually add dry ingredients to wet ingredients, mixing until just incorporated. Fold in reserved raisin mixture, carrots and pineapple to batter by hand until well mixed.
Divide batter evenly between cake pans and bake for 45-50 minutes or until a cake tester or toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Center should be set and spring back to touch. Let cake layers cool completely before removing from pans.
While cake is cooling, prepare the frosting by combining cream cheese and butter in a bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat together until well mixed. Beat in vanilla. Add one cup of powdered sugar at a time and mix at low speed until well incorporated and frosting is creamy.
Once cakes are cool, remove from pans. Place first layer, bottom side up, on serving plate and frost. Place second layer, bottom side down, on top of first layer and frost entire cake. Decorate top of cake with pecan halves.