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Carrot Gold Cupcakes

July 5, 2010

Vegetables are great to eat — they’re crunchy, they’re versatile, and hey, they’re healthy! Sometimes I like to dip them in things, like ranch or peanut butter, and make them a little less healthy. And sometimes I even go as far as baking them with tons of butter and cream cheese and sugar. I think my vegetables taste best that way.

So, there’s these carrots, and they’ve just been sitting in the bottom of the crisper drawer just about all summer. I eat carrots a lot during the school year because I’ll bring them to work and munch on them (especially because my friend Theresa Berens loves baby carrots), but this summer I’ve just been preoccupied with other great foods. So, I decided to make these carrots extra special and make them into carrot cupcakes.

I’ve had this carrot cupcake recipe stored away for awhile. I’m really obsessed with Homemade by Holman, and I just loved her adorable cupcakes in their pretty golden tins. While I was shopping the other day, I happened upon the same tins and just knew — it was time to make these cupcakes. Sometimes Fate brings you to bigger decisions in life, and sometimes Fate just wants you to eat somethin’ real good.

Carrot Cupcakes. Photo copyright Katie Currid, recipe from Homemade by Holman and adapted from Baking Illustrated.

You’ll Need: (makes 24ish)

3-4 large carrots (3 cups grated)

2 1/2 cups flour

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp ground cloves

1/2 tsp salt

1 1/2 cups sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

4 eggs

1 1/2 cups canola oil

Oven

Mixing bowl

Food processor/blender

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line muffin tin with cupcake liners (the pretty gold ones!) or spray liberally with cooking spray. Grate carrots (use your muscles!) and transfer to mixing bowl. Add flour, baking soda, baking powder and spices, mix together and set aside.

2.In food processor or blender, process sugars and eggs about 30 seconds. Then, add oil (Holman recommends putting this through the tube, but my blender is weird, so I just added it on top. It didn’t mix well, but once I added it with the dry ingredients, it wasn’t a big deal). Pour batter over dry ingredients and mix well.

3. Pour into muffin tins until about 2/3 full. Place into oven for 20 minutes, rotating tins after 10 minutes. Let cool 15 minutes before adding frosting.

Carrot cupcakes. Photograph copyright Katie Currid

Frosting:

12 oz. cream cheese, room temperature

1/2 cup butter, room temperature (I’m really bad about preparing, so I just set these in the oven while it was preheating for about 2 minutes)

2 tsp vanilla extract

3 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Beat together cream cheese and butter until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add vanilla and powdered sugar until well-mixed, mixing in ingredients slowly until incorporating and then beating about 1 minute. Pipe onto cupcakes and garnish with cinnamon.

Carrot Cupcakes. Photography copyright Katie Currid

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