No. 1 : Quick Recipe

Carrot Cake Cupcakes

  • 1 ¼ Cups All Purpose Flour 
  • 1 Tsp Baking Soda
  • ¼  Tsp Fine Sea Salt 
  • ½  Tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • ¼  Tsp Ground Nutmeg
  • ½ Tsp Ground Ginger
  • 3/4 Cup Packed Brown Sugar 
  • ¼  Cup Avocado or Grapeseed Oil
  • 2 Large Eggs
  • 1 1/2 Cups Peeled and Finely Shredded Carrots – placed in a paper towel and squeezed to remove extra moisture
  • ½ Cup Natural Applesauce
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla
  • 1/2  Cup Finely Chopped Toasted Walnuts
  • 4 OZ Low-Fat Cream Cheese, (Neufchatel), softened
  • 2 TB Unsalted Butter, softened
  • 1 Cup Powdered Sugar
  • 2 Tsp Orange Zest 

Step One

Preheat the oven to 350F. Line 12 standard muffin cups (or 24 minis) with paper cupcake liners. 

Step Two

Whisk the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger together well. In a large bowl, using a stand mixer or hand mixer, beat the brown sugar, oil and eggs until well combined. Add the carrots, applesauce and vanilla. Add the dry ingredients and mix until combined. Stir in the walnuts.  Divide the batter among the muffin cups. Bake until a toothpick comes out clean, about 14 – 18 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Step Three

Using the same mixer, beat together the cream cheese, butter, powered sugar and orange zest until smooth and creamy. Frost the cooled cupcakes with the frosting.

No. 2 : Kitchen SCOOP

When a recipe calls for “packed” brown sugar, literally press the brown sugar into a dry measuring cup until you can’t fit any more in. Slide a knife across the top to remove any excess.

No. 3 : Clever Idea

This cupcake is super moist because its made with a little oil AND because we are subbing applesauce for some of the oil we have removed. Also – carrots when they are finely grated can be very moist – so we are squeezing them to remove any extra moisture.

No. 4 : CHEERS

Sandeman Amontillado Character Sherry
About $18

I don’t often recommend sherry as a pairing on the Friday Four, but this one is easy to find – and with carrot cake it can’t be beat! Amontillado Sherry is named from its birthplace in Spain, and is fortified with alcohol to about 17.5% (That’s why they serve sherry in small glasses.) With a medium-gold color, it’s nutty and rich tasting with hints of dried figs and caramel, slightly sweet and smooth, with a dry finish. 

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