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  • Writer's pictureLeigh Gerstenberger

Carrot Cake

Updated: Dec 30, 2021

When I was a junior in high school the house next door to us was purchased by a family from Virginia who had three sons. It didn’t take long for a friendship to develop between the youngest son Mark and me. As our relationship grew, we spent time in and out of one another’s homes getting to know our respective families.

One evening while visiting Mark, his mom, Miss Virginia asked if I’d like to have a slice of carrot cake that she had just made. I’d never heard of carrot cake and thought she was kidding.

Then I tasted it, and in that moment, fell in love with what would become my most favorite dessert of all time. Over fifty years later, if carrot cake is on the menu, I order it and remember fondly the conundrum I was introduced to so many years ago…that a mundane vegetable could taste so delicious when combined with spices and cake batter.

Recently we hosted some friends from church in our home for a pot-luck dinner. Knowing my love of this dessert, our friend Claudia brought a large carrot cake to the dinner. While she claimed to have never made it before, I told her that she “nailed” it! Her cake was every bit as good as the first bite I had of Miss Virginia’s carrot cake more than 50 years ago.

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Kevin W. McCarthy
Kevin W. McCarthy
Dec 31, 2021

When Judith and I were classmates in b-school, not married at the time, we would go out to dinner on a grad-school budget. We had a favorite restaurant that served carrot cake. We would share a piece. One cut, then the other choose. Typically, I would cut the carrot cake as precisely in half as possible and she would choose. Regardless of how accurate I was she always choose the smaller half for herself. It was a great indication of her generosity of spirit so of course a few years we got married.

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