Since we live in Japan, where ovens are non-existent, the biggest tool I have for making cakes and cookies is a toaster oven. Last month I bought two miniature loaf pans. Those loaf pans have already contained four loaves of carrot cake each. They are currently gearing up for another round because I live in Tokushima.

A tower of Carrot Cake

Tokushima has carrots the way the ocean has wet. It doesn’t really matter if you like it or want it. Carrots are going to appear on your doorstep.

Imagine going to the grocery store with your plastic grocery bag (I know, it’s not very eco-friendly, but at least you are re-using it). You take your grocery bag to the produce aisle and fill it with carrots. Three times. In two weeks.

David and I have eaten raw carrots, stir-fried carrots on rice, carrots in minestrone soup, a few more carrots on rice. We put some in the freezer. And of course, I made carrot cake. I gave one to everyone we know: my boss, my co-workers, our landlady, the Jehovah’s Witnesses who came to the door. Everyone.

What’s left after the third batch has been eaten for dinner. And lunch. And snacks. Now it’s time for breakfast.

In addition to the creative uses we have tried to conceive, we have been given a jar of carrot jam. Carrot jam. I admit that in my wildest imaginings, I never imagined someone would make jam out of carrots. Truthfully, it’s not too bad, although it looks like something you’d feed a three-month old child. It is a little sweet, and a little vegetable-ly. I ate it on toast, and discovered it is, albeit a little weird, rather tasty.

It’s now the middle of May, The fields are empty or full of newly-planted rice. I was even informed by my boss that carrot season is over.

Then last night my landlady thanked me for the delicious carrot cake. Another bag of carrots appeared. And she smiled.

I need to go buy more eggs.

The best way to eat carrots for breakfast? Carrot jam, of course.