Friday, June 11, 2010

Welcome Baby Oliver 6/10

Our cousin Bryan and his wife Katie welcomed a new member of the family last week. Oliver was born on June 2nd and to celebrate, we made Carrot Cake cupcakes. Now, how does that relate you might ask. Well, these baby carrot cakes were made with carrot baby food.

This is a technique that we've been wanting to try and the arrival of Oliver was a perfect opportunity. Katie has been an avid supporter of this blog so we dedicate this post to her and her new family.
The recipe was taken from Now, when the recipe is for cake and we want to make cupcakes, we get a little apprehensive. It took making quite a few of each to understand the difference but there is one very big one and the conversion of a recipe from one to the other can be a crap shoot. Why you ask? Because a cupcake is finger food and a cake is fork food. Can you imagine trying to eat a piece of cake with your fingers? It would all fall apart. And conversely eating a cupcake with a fork just seems ridiculous. We took the risk with this recipe because the reviews said that the cake was moist and dense and others had had success with the conversion. SPOILER ALERT: We did too. :o)
Here's what you need for the cake:

  • 2 cups white sugar (we used 1 1/2 cups white, 1/2 cup of brown) 
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 (4.5 ounce) jars carrot baby food
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • Preheat to 350. Put your cupcake papers in the tins. Combine the sugars and oil in a large bowl and beat well.

(Yes, it's a lot of oil)

Add the eggs, baby food and vanilla. Beat until smooth. In a separate bowl, combine the sifted flour, salt, baking soda and the spices. Enjoy the smell. Combine it all together and beat well. Fill the papers 3/4 full.

  • We found that this recipe makes 20 cupcakes so we had 4 empty spots. We put a little water in these to make sure the pan didn't warp. It's not likely that it will but we wanted to be safe. Speaking of which, we only advise doing this if you are extra careful not to get the hot water spilled onto you or your freshly baked goodies.

And now for the frosting. Most carrot cake recipes use a cream cheese frosting. We don't disagree. The recipe for this frosting is the easiest yet:
1 8oz package of cream cheese
1 stick of butter (1/2 cup)
1 tblspn of vanilla
4 cups of confectioner's sugar
Beat the cream cheese and butter in a mixer till fluffy. Add the vanilla and sugar leave the mixer running till smooth.
Even though these are made with baby food, Oliver obviously can't eat them yet. And I know some people are turned off by the idea of baby food in adult food but the ingredients in the baby food are carrots and water. Nothing else and nothing to worry about baking with. We wanted to make them into cupcakes because #1 Katie loves cupcakes, and #2 we thought they would be easier to ship. Katie and Bryan live in the Bay Area and we are in Los Angeles. We won't get to see them till next month and that's just too long. It just is.
We found these little boxes to help us get the cakes to them. They're called Cup-a-Cake and you can get them here.

We froze the cupcakes Wednesday night and then overnighted them the next day. They should be getting them today. We hope they enjoy them and welcome Oliver!

Lessons learned: Hopefully shipping works... We will add shredded carrots to the batter next time. The flavor is good but could be more carrot-y.


  1. Katie & Bryan EysleeJune 11, 2010 at 4:18 PM

    They DID come today! I think only one hit the top of the container but I know Bryan will have fun licking the frosting! Thank you so much for thinking of us and Oliver! Can't wait to see you guys in July!!!! Love You!

  2. Oh wow! Those little containers are amazing! I never knew you could use baby food for cooking.