Saturday, March 30, 2013

This Bunny Likes Carrot Cupcakes

My love for cupcake baking knows no bounds. And to my delight, I've become the (un?)official cupcake baker for my husband's office. Guys, they actually request my cupcakes. Being a baker is one of my many secret dream jobs so this is a major thrill. I like to put on Edith Piaf, don my frilly apron, and as I whisk and frost, I pretend I am a famous Parisian pastry chef known the world over for my petits gâteaux. But, I digress.

I made Easter-themed carrot cupcakes for them this week. Recipe below.

I'm missing the Annual Adult Easter Egg Hunt at my parents' house this weekend. Flavio has to work, so we can't make it. Sad face. It's a highly competitive race for plastic eggs, some of which contain chocolate, some of which contain $20 bills (!!) Bummed we're not there. I'll have to eat my feelings. Thank god for carrot cake. And at a zillion calories per bite, thank god I gave most of it away.

Hope your weekend is filled with Easter treats and something sweet. xo


Carrot Cupcakes with Mascarpone Cream Cheese Icing
Makes 12 cupcakes

For cupcakes:

  • 4 medium carrots
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • Make cupcakes:

    Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle. Line muffin cups with paper liners.

    Coarsely grate enough carrots to measure 2 cups using large teardrop holes of a box grater.

    Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg in a bowl.

    Whisk together oil, eggs, brown sugar, grated carrots, and vanilla in a large bowl, then stir in flour mixture until just combined.

    Divide batter among muffin cups and bake until golden and a wooden pick inserted into center of a cupcake comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes.

    Cool in pan on a rack 10 minutes. Remove cupcakes from pan and cool completely on rack, about 1 hour more.

    For icing:

    {the secret ingredient}
    • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
    • 1 cup (8 ounces) cream cheese at room temperature
    • 2 cups powdered sugar -- sifted
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • Pinch of kosher salt
    • 1 cup (8 ounces) mascarpone cheese
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • Fresh raspberries for decorating

    Make icing:

    In the large bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter, cream cheese, and powdered sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Beat in the mascarpone on very low speed until just combined. (Be careful; once you've added the mascarpone, excessive beating can make the frosting curdle.) Stir in the vanilla extract.   NOTE: I used my food processor as my mixer is broken, and it worked fine. If using a food processor, hand-mix in the mascarpone, or it will curdle.

    Decorate cupcakes with a pastry bag and tip -- it's easier and prettier than any other method. If you don't have a pastry bag/tip, load all the icing into a freezer-size ziplock bag and cut off one corner. Instant cake decorating trick!  I used Wilton's Icing Gel to paint on the carrots. 

    Cupcake recipe from here.
    Icing recipe from here.

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