Monday, June 28, 2010

Carrot Cake Cupcakes

I had a tub of cream cheese in the fridge, but I can't eat bagels anymore. Not one to be wasteful, I decided to make a batch of cream cheese frosting. If you have frosting, you have to have something to spread it on, so I made a batch of carrot cake cupcakes, too. I absolutely love carrot cake - anything with nutmeg and cinnamon is always tops on my list. Now it can be tops on yours, too, because here is my absolutely bestest carrot cake recipe ever. It is gluten free, but you should be able to substitute wheat flour (leaving out the xanthum gum) and get equally good results. Warning - this is a full on dessert recipe - no applesauce to replace fats here. They do freeze well, though, so you can eat a few and freeze the rest! Or you could do like I do and eat three in one day. Each meal deserves it's own dessert, don't you think?

GF Carrot Cake

3 cups organic brown sugar (I make my own by mixing molassas with evaporated cane juice, the fancy name for white sugar that has not been processed with chemicals)

1 cup coconut oil (adds richness and it's good for you!)

4 organic eggs

1 tsp vanilla

3 cups grated carrots

3 cups Bob's All Purpose gluten free four (or your preferred mix)

1 1/2 tsp xanthan gum

2 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg (it makes a big difference in all of your baking baby, so if you don't have a nutmeg or microplane grater, go get one)

1 tsp ginger

1/4 tsp cloves

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp gluten free baking powder

1 tsp salt

Cream the sugar and oil. Add the eggs, one at a time. Add vanilla. Mix dry ingredients in a separate bowl, and wisk to mix. Add the carrots and flour mixture, a cup at a time, alternating each and mixing well. Use an ice cream scoop to fill 22-24 paper lined muffin cups, and bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes. Use a toothpick to test.

I wish I had such a refined recipe for the frosting, but I really don't measure much when I make it. Generally, I cream one stick of butter with 6-8 ounces of cream cheese. I add vanilla, usually two teaspoons, then I beat in about 3-4 cups of sifted organic powdered sugar until I get the consistency I want. However, there are two musts for all of my frostings: you must use a good butter, not the store brand. There is a difference. From my local supermarket I like Danish Creamery. Also, organic powdered sugar tastes superior. My local Trader Joe's stopped carrying it, so I shelled out the $5 for a pack at my grocery store. Then I read on-line that I could have made my own by whirling my $2.99 bag of organic evaporated cane juice (ie sugar) in the blender for a few minutes. Guess what I'm doing when this $5 bag runs out?

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