Carrot Bars with Orange Cream Frosting

We got our first major snowfall of the season and my oldest daughter came to spend the day with me and do a little shoveling.  For supper, I made our go-to meal on a cold winter day – potato soup with homemade yeast rolls.

Here are my previously posted recipes for Potato Soup and Yeast Rolls.

For dessert, I went back to a recipe I had first made in 1989 from a cookbook called Blue Ribbon Cookies.   It was a nice finish to a hearty, body-and-soul warming meal.

CARROT BARS WITH ORANGE CREAM FROSTING

Carrot Bars:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  Grease and flour a 9×9″ baking pan

  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tblsp. water
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tblsp. sour cream
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. ground ginger
  • 3 Tblsp. chopped nuts
  • 3 Tblsp. raisins
  • 1/2 cup grated carrots

In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil, egg, water, sugar, sour cream and vanilla.

In a separate small bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, salt and ginger.  Add the dry ingredients to the oil mixture and blend well.  Stir in the nuts, raisins and grated carrots.

Spoon mixture into a 9×9 greased and floured baking pan.  Bake @ 375 degrees F for 20-25 minutes until the top is golden brown.  Cool in pan placed on a rack.

When the bars are cool, frost with:

ORANGE CREAM FROSTING

  • 1 Tblsp. softened butter
  • 1-1/2 oz. softened cream cheese
  • 3/4 Tblsp. orange juice concentrate
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar

Place above items in a small bowl and whisk until smooth.  Frost top of bars.

Cut into squares to serve. 

I’m not a big fan of snow, but being able to share a meal with my daughter in front of the fireplace makes it a lot more pleasant.

A Snowy Saturday Lunch

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Normally on Saturdays, my two daughters, grandchildren and I go to a nice restaurant for lunch and then on to shopping or some kid-friendly event.  This Saturday morning, though, it was snowing heavily with the promise/threat of rain, sleet, and more snow.  So, the older daughter and I are here alone today and I made my traditional snowy-day potato soup for lunch.  This soup is quite thick – more like a chowder.   I tend to make it when I’m snowed in for its comfort food quality and because the recipe calls for ingredients that I normally have on hand.

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Snowy-Day Potato Soup

  • 3 cups of diced potatoes
  • 1 cup of chopped onion
  • 1 cup grated cheese (I’ve used cheddar, colby and swiss – whatever you have on hand)
  • 1 cup of milk
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • A dash of nutmeg

Cover the potatoes and onions with water and cook until tender.  Drain off the water, leaving the vegetables in the pan.  Mash, leaving some of the potatoes in chunks.  Add grated cheese, milk, salt and freshly ground black pepper (to taste).  Heat until hot but not boiling.  Pour into bowls and grate a little fresh nutmeg on top of the soup.

Serve with a nice homemade roll.

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For dessert I made Nutty Nutmeg Bars (see recipe here).

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Everything tasted good and almost made up for not getting to go out for lunch.