Thursday, April 07, 2005

Birthday treats

I made carrot cupcakes for Dan's birthday this past weekend. I was concerned the whole wheat flour would make them too dense and heavy, but they were quite moist. He says they're good for you because they're chock full of whole wheat, carrots, walnuts, and pineapple...but I'm not so sure...after all, they're topped with cream cheese frosting. I also made one of his favorite desserts...hazelnut praline semifreddo, a wonderfully rich alternative to ice cream. This was my frozen dessert of choice before I got an ice cream maker.

...Whole Wheat Carrot Cupcakes...
Adapted from James Ormsby's recipe in this article about whole grains
Yields 18 cupcakes

1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour (available at Rainbow Grocery)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cups peeled and grated carrots
4 large eggs
1/2 cup canola oil
2 teaspoons pure vanilla
1 cup (8 ounces) canned crushed pineapple in juice (not heavy syrup)
1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts

Preheat oven to 350°
Combine the flour, sugars, salt, cinnamon, baking powder and baking soda in a bowl. Stir until well blended.
Combine the carrots, eggs, oil and vanilla in a large bowl. Whisk well, then whisk in the pineapple and walnuts.
Add the dry ingredients to the liquid ingredients and stir just to blend.
Spoon the batter into lined muffin tins, about 3/4 full.
Bake in the center of the oven for 25 minutes, until the top feels firm and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool in the pan on a rack.
Frost the cupcakes just before serving.

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