Ok, real talk. Winter is over.
After what felt like an eternity of snow days and a lingering cold that managed to sneak its way into the first real days of spring, we’ve turned a corner!
Oh, and we moved. To a new apartment. WITH AN ABUNDANCE OF NATURAL LIGHT. And the people rejoiced.
Between the new digs, the new job, and a remorseless winter, it’s been a tough few months for blogging. But I’m here, and back with a new recipe!
It even has a vegetable. It’s basically a health food.
Enter Ina’s carrot cake. It has all the traditional ingredients, but with a delicious twist to the frosting. Cream cheese is mixed with mascarpone cheese for a rich frosting with bits of candied ginger for a bit of bite. In short, it’s tasty.
I opted to take the original cake recipe and make cupcakes for ease of transportation (happy birthday, mom!), but you can use this recipe for two nine-inch cakes as well.
My only note is that next time I make these, I’ll be sure to employ Ina’s Food Network assistant that grates the pound of carrots.
I got finger cramps (not to mention shredded carrot bits all over my floor).
Yet I digress.
Ahh, the frosting. I found the candied ginger at my local Trader Joe’s (I love you, TJ) and really enjoyed the addition of the mascarpone cheese. It was the perfect complement to the carrot cake.
And the carrot cake feels like the perfect complement to spring. Here’s to the warm months to come!
Carrot Cupcakes with Ginger Mascarpone Frosting from Barefoot Contessa Foolproof
Makes 32 cupcakes or two 9 inch cakes
2 cups sugar
1 1/3 cups vegetable oil
3 extra large eggs at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups plus 1 tbsp flour
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 lb grated carrots
1 cup raisins
1 cup chopped walnuts
12 oz mascarpone cheese at room temperature
4 oz cream cheese at room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
2 tbsp heavy cream
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup chopped candied ginger
1/4 tsp kosher salt
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Grate carrots and set aside in a medium bowl. Add sugar, vegetable oil and eggs to the bowl of a stand mixer and beat for about 2 minutes on medium high, until mixture is pale yellow and thicker. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, cinnamon, baking soda and kosher salt. Slowly add the mixture to the stand mixer until thoroughly combined.
Add raisins and walnuts to the grated carrots, and add the tablespoon of flour. Mix until the four are combined, then fold into the cake batter.
Spoon mixture into lined cupcake pans (about 3/4 full) and bake for 18 minutes until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Transfer to a baking rack to cool completely. Alternatively, bake for 10 minutes at 400 degrees, then lower the heat to 350 and bake for 30 to 35 minutes.
For the frosting, place mascarpone cheese, cream cheese, heavy cream, powdered sugar, vanilla extract, candied ginger and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment. Beat on medium for about a minute until ingredients are combined and smooth.
Frost and enjoy!