I usually make carrot cake in a rectangular pan and simply slice it into fairly big rectangles and pipe some tangy, creamy cream cheese frosting on each piece. But as I was looking at the cooling carrot cake the other day, I decided to fancy it up a bit,
Using a fluted round cutter ( the same one I used for biscuits), I cut out several little cakes about 2 1/2 inches across, piped the frosting as I would for cupcakes, then scraped some lime zest on top and plopped a fresh blueberry on top. You'd never know it took just a few minutes to decorate the batch, and they looked like something from a fancy bakery. Endless variations popped into my head; from chocolate drizzles and scrapings to fat raspberries to toasted nuts and coconut.
Preheat oven to 350F.
A greased rectangular baking pan.
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil ( I used canola)
1 cup King Arthur all purpose flour
1 t. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
1 t. cinnamon
2 cups finely grated carrots ( I used the fine grating cone that came with my Kitchenaid mixer)
Beat eggs, sugar, oil, and dry ingredients. Add carrots and mix again. Scrape batter into pan, smooth out, and bake for about 25-30 minutes, or until top springs back slightly when you press it gently.
Remove to cooling rack. After ten minutes, loosen cake gently with spatula, and turn out onto another cooling rack.
When cake has cooled, cut out little circles using a round cutter, pipe on frosting, and decorate.
Cream Cheese Frosting:
1 large package cream cheese
1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
juice of one fresh lemon
1 box of confectioner's sugar
Mix and whip ingredients, scrape into a pastry bag with a star tip, and let your imagination run wild!