Monday, January 16, 2012

Carrot Cake Cupcakes

When my husband said that he wanted to make my birthday cake this year I was pretty surprised.  He loves to cook, and not just grilling either.  Sometimes he will say to me when does he get to cook dinner.  And when I was preparing to spend an extended time away from him and offered to make dinners and freeze them , he told me that I didn't need to, he would like the time to be able to cook himself since he enjoys it.  WELL... I made him 3 large meals in the freezer, but he really likes to cook himself.

Baking on the other hand, not so much.  One day before Christmas I was at the table decorating some cookies.  He works from home most days, so he came downstairs to get a snack, and he came over to see what I was making.  He said to me that it looked very easy and that he could do a better job than me.  So I let him decorate a few of my extra cookies.  I of course had to take some pictures, but he made me promise that those would not make it online.  He actually did a good job though!  

The only other time I can remember him baking something was the first birthday of mine that we were together.  I'll never forget going over to the green house that him and his hockey teammates rented our Sophomore year of college, to find a birthday cake in the kitchen!  I really don't like surprises.  Actually, yes I LOVE surprises but I always want to know whats going on.  This time I had absolutely no idea!  How sweet. We were probably dating only 3 or 4 months at this point, so that won him some major points!  

Now 6 years later, he wanted to make me a cake again!  This time would be a little harder to surprise me, so he asked me what kind I would like.  Hmm... Carrot Cake!!!  One of my absolute favorite cakes.  Maybe even #1.  That and Red Velvet!  

We had to make them to take over to his parents the next night for dinner, so I decided that cupcakes would be much better.  Less baking time and less work.  And I thought he would do much better at icing cupcakes than a whole cake.  

So with my recipe and supervision, he made me these cupcakes!  And let me tell you, he only wanted my help to tell him how to do it and nothing else.  He would give me the look if I tried to help out at all.  However, I did ice the 3 cupcakes in the these pictures.  After all, I wanted them to look extra nice for you all!  And he does not want me posting anything he does online.  I don't blame him... it's not his thing.  

So here is my recipe!  

Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Icing

1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2- 1 3/4 cups flour(start with 1 1/2 and add more if needed)
2 tbsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp salt
3-4 large carrots, finely grated
3/4 cup pineapple chunks, well drained
1/2 cup shredded coconut

1 package cream cheese, softened
1 stick (4 oz.) butter, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. In large bowl whisk oil, sugars, eggs and vanilla together.  
  3. In separate bowl, sift flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder, baking soda and salt together.
  4. Whisk in flour mixture to oil mixture until combined.
  5. Add in shredded carrots, pineapple and coconut.  Mix until combined.
  6. Pour into paper lined muffin tins. 
  7. Bake about 15-20 minutes.  Cupcakes are done when you gently press the tops of the cupcakes and it springs back.  Or insert a knife in the middle to make sure it comes out clean.  
  8. To make the icing, use a mixer to thoroughly mix cream cheese and butter together.
  9. Once smooth, gradually add in the powdered sugar and vanilla.  Mix until smooth and free of lumps.
  10. Pipe or spread the icing onto cooled cupcakes.
  11. Enjoy!

 I would have to say that he made the best birthday cupcakes!  Now only if I can get him to make them for me every birthday!  

Just a fun fact, my husband plays in the National Lacrosse League for the Minnesota Swarm.  The season just started and this is his first year with the Swarm, 4th year in the league.  They just came out with Fantasy Lacrosse.  And as much as I love football, I have never done any Fantasy Football.  But I wanted to sign up for the Lacrosse version.  Just letting everyone know that after the 2nd week, I am in 22nd place out of 1927!  Pretty darn good I would have to say.  I, of course, have a little strategy session with my husband, and as long as his team is playing that week, he is on my team!  But I was pretty happy to find out this morning that I am in 22nd place!  Yay!!! Go me!  Haha ;-)

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