Indulge in a spot of Easter baking with the children with these carrot cake cupcakes from Pixie Hall Cakes…
There were lots of possibilities for this month’s recipe. With mothers’ day and St Patrick’s Day close together we could have had something pretty and flowery or something with Guinness or Baileys or lots of green. As you can see, I didn’t go for any of that (maybe next year!) and so, with Easter just around the corner, I thought I’d give you this great recipe for carrot cake cupcakes.
Carrot cake reminds me of Easter, spring and of my dad. It’s his favourite. I don’t actually make it very often (I’m a terrible daughter) so I made sure he got some of these when I’d made them. They have his seal of approval.
These are perfect to make with the kids. The cake recipe is slightly unusual (in the UK at least) in that it uses measuring cups rather than weight measures. I use cup measures all the time and would recommend purchasing a set if you intend to gather recipes from the internet. The vast majority of American recipes will use cups to measure the ingredients and there’s no easy way to convert from volume to weight measures. Aldiss has some gorgeous bright measuring cups.
The cupcakes are easy to make, the cream cheese topping is delicious and they are super easy to decorate. I used chocolate bunnies on mine but feel free to use whatever sweeties you like to make these beautiful.
For the cakes
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup caster sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup plain yoghurt
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 1/4 cups plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups coarsely grated carrots (2 to 3 medium carrots)
For the frosting (from BBC Food)
150g softened butter
45g caster sugar
300g cream cheese (room temperature)
1/2 tsp vanilla
Preheat the oven to 180C and line a 12-hole muffin pan with paper cases. Set aside.
In a large bowl, mix the eggs, oil, sugars, yoghurt and vanilla together until smooth and well combined.
In another bowl, whisk together the cinnamon, nutmeg, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Fold this gently into the egg mixture until just combined.
Add in the carrots and stir through carefully until evenly combined.
Divide the cake mixture evenly between the cases and bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden, risen and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean and free from crumbs.
Allow the cupcakes to cool completely on a wire rack before decorating.
To make the frosting, cream the sugar, vanilla and butter together until light and fluffy. You can do this by hand or with an electric beater/mixer. Beat in the cream cheese until smooth.
Spread the icing onto the cupcakes using a butter knife or palette knife. Pour your sprinkles into a shallow dish and the roll the edges of the frosted cupcakes into them to stick to the edges. Top with a chocolate bunny or other festive decoration.
Linds Bestwicke runs Pixie Hall Cakes in Fakenham and can be found selling her delicious baking at Fakenham Farmers’ Market on the 4th Saturday of each month.
Photographs by Keith Osborn Photography