National Carrot Cake Day
annually on February 3rd
Carrot cake, a cake made of carrots mixed with batter, is eaten and celebrated today. It is healthier than many other cakes, and besides featuring carrots, it often includes raisins and walnuts. Many believe it is based off and came from carrot pudding of the Middle Ages. At that time sugar and sweeteners were rare and expensive, so carrots were used as a substitute. Written carrot pudding recipes date back to the sixteenth century.
George Washington ate a carrot tea cake on Evacuation Day at the Fraunces Tavern in New York, although it differed in some respects from today's carrot cake. Carrot cake recipes that more resemble what we are familiar with today began appearing in the nineteenth century. The earliest one that is known appeared in a French cookbook published in England in 1827. In the United States, the earliest carrot cake recipe may date to 1912. The rationing of things such as sugar by the British government during World War II led to the modern popularity of the cake. Recipes that include a cream cheese frosting did not appear in print until the 1960s, and they may have been based off of Eastern cream cheese cake recipes from an earlier time.
How to Observe
Celebrate the day by making carrot cake. In order to get a feel for the history of the cake, you could also make carrot pudding, or the carrot tea cake that was served to George Washington.