Woodhouse Chocolates' Tracy Anderson shares an AMAZINGLY delicious carrot cupcake recipe with caramelized white chocolate frosting that is a must for your Spring festivities! Tracy says, “The frosting will take a little advanced planning because of a fun technique of caramelizing white chocolate, but I think it's worth it!"
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp fine sea salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 cups grated carrots
1 orange, zested
Caramelized White Chocolate:
16 oz high quality white couverture*
*Be sure to use only chocolates with the word "couverture" listed. Couverture chocolates have been specifically designed to use as a coating, with a minimum of 31% cocoa butter. Brands like Valrhona, Callebaut, Cocoa Barry, and Scharffen Berger are easy to find in gourmet grocery stores or specialty shops.
12 oz. caramelized white chocolate
4 oz unsalted butter (unsalted European style, then add 1/4 teaspoon salt)
2 cups powdered sugar
3-4 Tbsp milk
food coloring of your choice
Pre-heat your oven to 350F. In a mixing bowl, whisk together eggs and sugars until well combined. Add oil, whisk again. Add vanilla, whisk again. Combine dry ingredients in another small bowl, then mix into the wet ones. Stir with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula until just combined, then add carrots and orange zest, mix until well combined.
Line cupcake tins with paper and fill 3/4 full with batter. Put in oven and bake about 15 minutes, or until the tops bounce back to the touch, or a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool. Tracy recommends removing them from the baking pan right away so they don't continue to cook with residual heat.
Caramelized White Chocolate
Set your oven to 250F. If your chocolate is in block form, chop it. If it is “pistole”, or little buttons - no need to chop. Spread the chocolate in a rimmed baking sheet. Put in the oven. After twenty minutes, stir it about and spread evenly in the pan. Do this every ten minutes for the next 60-90 minutes. During this process, the chocolate will get lumpy and chalky, but just keep turning and spreading. Eventually it will become smooth and caramel colored. Remove from oven and let cool.
In the bowl of a mixer, whip together butter and caramelized white chocolate. Add powdered sugar and 2 Tbsp of the milk. Add a few drops of food coloring, if desired. Whip with the whisk until smooth. Add more milk if necessary to achieve a fluffy, spreadable frosting.
Tracy says: “I found that if I whipped too much, it just started thickening up and I had to add more milk. I guess something about the chocolate does something when whipped. I don't know how or why. Our usual answer is 'It's chocolate!' while throwing our hands in the air. So frost those cupcakes however you know how. If you're fancy and can wield a piping bag, go for it. Otherwise, just spread it on with a knife - it's all good.”
Decorate with seasonal sprinkles, marshmallows, or whatever catches your fancy. Enjoy!
Makes 18 cupcakes.