Carrot Cupcakes

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Carrot Cupcakes
These carrot cupcakes are lightly spiced with cinnamon along with raisins for an extra touch of sweetness. Carrot cake normally has nuts which I chose to leave out, but feel free to add some chopped walnuts or pecans if you want. Instead of traditional cream cheese frosting, I chose mascarpone cheese frosting for these cakes. Mascarpone cheese when whipped with cream makes a heavenly frosting, not too heavy and not too sweet, more like a richly flavored whipped cream with a hint of the mild cheese flavor. The quirky marzipan carrots are easy to make and a whimsical way to let everyone know you are serving carrot cupcakes.
Recipe type: Cupcakes
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Recipe Notes
Ingredients
Batter:
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 cups grated raw carrots
Marzipan Carrots:
  • See recipe for Marzipan
  • Orange Food Coloring
  • Green Food Coloring
Mascarpone Cheese Frosting:
  • 16 ounces mascarpone cheese
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup confectioner’s (powdered) sugar
  • 1½ cups whipping (heavy) cream
Topping (Optional):
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons gold sugar sprinkles
Instructions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare two standard 12-cup muffin pans; line with paper cupcake liners.
Batter:
  1. Plump the raisins by steaming in a colander in a double boiler; steam the raisins about 1 minute or until softened. Thoroughly drain, or spread the raisins on paper toweling to dry. Tip: Create a double boiler by filling a saucepan with 2 inches of water and bringing it to a simmer. Place the fruit in a steamer or plastic or wire mesh colander on top of the simmering water, the upper pan should not touch the water.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, add flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon; sift or whisk together to mix. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl of an electric mixer, add eggs and vanilla; beat on medium-high speed for 2 minutes or until the eggs are a light yellow color and thickened. With the mixer still on medium-high speed, slowly add the sugar to the eggs, either one tablespoon at a time, or in a very slow steady stream, taking 3 to 4 minutes to add all of the sugar, and beating until the eggs and sugar are fully incorporated, and the mixture looks light in color and thickened. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula so the mixture blends evenly.
  4. Reduce mixer speed to medium, slowly pour the oil into the batter in a slow steady stream, and then beat for 1 minute longer.
  5. Reduce mixer speed to medium-low, and blend in the flour mixture all at once, mixing just until incorporated.
  6. Remove the bowl from the mixer. Using a large rubber spatula, fold in the drained raisins and carrots.
  7. Spoon the batter into the cupcake liners. Fill ⅔ full, using about ¼ cup of batter per cup. Tip: Avoid over-filling the liners which may cause the batter to run-over the sides when baking. It is better to bake any remaining batter separately after the first pan of cupcakes has finished baking.
  8. Bake: Bake, rotating pan halfway through, 25 minutes, or until the cakes are just firm and spring back when gently pressed, and a toothpick, wooden skewer, or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool slightly in cupcake pan, and turn out of pan when cool enough to handle. Repeat process with any remaining batter. Cool cupcakes completely on a wire cooling rack before frosting and decorating.
Marzipan Carrots:
  1. See recipe for Marzipan.
  2. Use about ⅓ of the marzipan recipe to make the carrots, depending on the size and number of carrots you want to make. Reserve the remainder of the marzipan for another use.
  3. Separate a small portion of the marzipan to use for the leaves. Tint the larger portion a carrot orange color and tint the smaller portion green for the carrot tops.
  4. Form small amounts of the orange marzipan into balls, and then roll the balls between your palms, elongating them into a tube shape and tapering one end to make a carrot shape. Use the long edge of a toothpick to press horizontal indentations all along the length of the carrot to create shallow creases. Form small bits of green marzipan for the tops and press onto the top of the carrot. Flatten the top and use a small sharp knife to separate into strips.
  5. Cover carrots with plastic wrap or place in a sealed container to keep them from drying out until ready to use.
Mascarpone Cheese Frosting:
  1. In a large bowl, combine mascarpone cheese, vanilla, confectioners’ sugar, and whipping cream; use an electric mixer and beat together until mixture is smooth and stiff peaks form, about 2 to 4 minutes. Do not overbeat.
  2. Use a pastry bag and decorating tip to pipe the frosting. Place a marzipan carrot on top of the frosting.
Topping (Optional):
  1. Sprinkle with gold sugar sprinkles.
  2. Refrigerate frosted cupcakes until ready to serve. Refrigerate leftovers.

Carrot Cupcakes

Carrot Cupcakes

Carrot Cupcakes recipe