Back in Colorado, buried deep in a box in my parents’ attic, my carrot cake recipe is stashed and collecting dust. Sadness. Oh how I wish I had had it today. I have been craving a bite of moist and spicy carrot cupcake with perfectly tangy cream cheese frosting. So I made up a little half batch today, but because I don’t have my recipe with me, I borrowed a recipe from Martha — and I’m disappointed to say that while the felon’s cupcakes look a treat, they fall far from being perfectly moist and spicy and delicious.

carrot cupcakes with cream cheese frosting

One thing Marf and I do agree on, however, is that these little cherubs cost just pennies to make. And once again I only had to go to the shop to get coconut (100g for 89p), walnuts (100g for £1.29) and cream cheese (200g for 75p). So this is a good one to make if you’re cleaning your cupboards. I made half a recipe but to make the full recipe it costs only about £3 — £1 for the cake mix ingredients; 20p for the carrots; 45p for coconut; 65p for walnuts; 75p for cheese — that’s only 25p per cupcake! (Now don’t you hate those trendy posh cupcakeries charging £2.50 per cake now??)

While they baked, they weren’t rising to their full potential, and the way they looked when I took them out of the oven, I had the feeling they were going to be pretty dry.  Sure enough, they reminded me more of dry grains than eating cake. But once slathered in cream cheese frosting, I decided not to bin them. UPDATE: After spending the night in the cake tin, they moistened up and were much better.

i'll still eat you

Even though these weren’t the best, I’ll give you Martha’s recipe today anyways, because good or bad, I’m posting what I make here. Think of it as something to improve on. And when I’m back in Colorado in August, I’ll make some of my own, and you can compare them and decide who deserves a place in the kitchen, and who deserves the ankle bracelet.

Carrot Cupcakes

Preheat oven 180°C // 350°F

1 c. caster sugar // 225g
1/3 c. vegetable oil // 80ml
2 tbsp. orange juice // 30ml
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs // 50p

Stir in:
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. salt

Add & mix well:
3/4 c. + 2 tbsp. flour // 94g + 2 tbsp

Stir in:
1 1/2 c. shredded carrot
1/4 c. shredded coconut
1/2 c. chopped walnuts

Bake 25 mins. Cool completely before frosting. Makes 12.

Cream Cheese Frosting

Whisk until smooth:
8oz cream cheese // 200g
3/4 c. icing sugar // 94g
1/4 tsp. vanilla

Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart