DEAR SUN SPOTS: Last spring there was a carrot cake recipe in the column. I made it and it was perfect. Unfortunately, I lost the recipe. Can we have it again? — Joni, no town

ANSWER: This is a good recipe. I have just dusted it with confectioners sugar after it is cool or you could drizzle it with a vanilla or citrus glaze or frost it with cream cheese frosting. It’s a great dessert for Easter.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift together 2 cups flour with 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, 1/4 teaspoon allspice, 1/4 teaspoon cloves and 1/4 teaspoon salt.

In a separate bowl, beat together 2 cups sugar and 1 1/4 cups oil until well-blended. Add 4 eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla. Add dry ingredients then beat for 2 minutes.

In a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup chopped walnuts and 1 teaspoon flour. Stir walnuts, 1 1/2 cups grated carrots, and 1 (8.25-ounce) can crushed pineapple into batter. Spoon batter into a greased and floured 9-inch bundt pan.

Bake for 1 hour and until cake tests done. Cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes. Invert and remove cake from pan. Cool on rack. This recipe makes 12 servings.


DEAR SUN SPOTS: I’ve used the dog food and dog biscuit recipes you published a while ago and want to thank you. Both have worked out great for our dogs. — Andrea, no town

ANSWER: In case you missed these: Here’s the dog food recipe: Simmer 1 pound turkey burger in enough chicken stock to cover until cooked through, adding a 1 pound bag of frozen “California mix” vegetables toward the end of cooking time. Allow to cool then puree in a food processor. This makes about 4 (2/3 cup servings), keeps in the fridge for a few days and can be frozen.

A reader sent in this easy, wheat-free treat recipe. If other readers have dog food/treat recipes to share, feel free to send them along.

Dog Biscuits: Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly spray a baking sheet with nonstick spray. Combine 1 cup oat flour*, 1/2 cup oats, 1/2 cup water, 1 egg, 3 tablespoons olive oil and 2 tablespoons molasses in a large mixing bowl, stirring until a dough forms. You can either roll out the dough and cut it into fun, bite-sized shapes or drop the dough by the teaspoon onto a baking sheet.

Bake for 15 minutes to get a crisp dog biscuit. If your pup prefers a chewier treat, bake in a 300 degree oven for only 10 minutes.

*Oat flour can be made by grinding oats in the blender until powdery.


DEAR SUN SPOTS: Is there a difference between woodchucks and groundhogs? — Mary, no town

ANSWER: They are the same critter. Most of us refer to the animals as groundhogs. Yet, in British English, they’re referred to as woodchucks. Woodchucks/groundhogs belong to the same family as squirrels and prairie dogs.

Did you know groundhogs have other common names as well, including whistle pig and land beaver? Whistle pig comes from their distinctive calling sound that resembles a shrill whistle, whereas land beaver describes their habitat and behaviors.

This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name. We won’t use it if you ask us not to. Please include your phone number. Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be emailed to

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.

filed under: