Today I turn 29.
28 was a pretty good year. I started this blog. Vacations were spent ocean side. There was a new job. 26.2 was accomplished. There were more moments of joy than moments of sorrow. Laughter was abundant. Crying was sparse. Opportunities were seized. Leaps of faith were taken. Old friends remained constant and new friendships were forged.
What to expect for 29? I haven’t a clue, but today it begins. Honestly, I was all prepared to create a list of 29 things to do before 30. All with the hopes of getting me doing things I have always wanted to do. Be a do-er! All things to make 29 interesting and fun and adventurous. So while I don’t have 29 things yet, here is what I have so far…
Visit 12 new restaurants that are Cleveland based. Go to an Ikea ( I never said they were earth shattering or life changing!). Run Marathon #2. Read at least one book a month (hopefully more). Throw a dinner party. Attend a food bloggers conference. Take one picture a day that isn’t of food. Fry doughnuts in my kitchen. View a surgery. Sky dive. Attend a play. Try my hand at French. Visit a flea market. Learn to use my grandmothers sewing machine. Visit a new city. Decorate one room in my house. Go to Niagara Falls. A single pull-up.
Nothing crazy or off the wall. All things that I can accomplish. No flying to the moon or a flight with the Blue Angels. Simple things that would make me happy. So, I guess, now that I put this list out there…I better get moving!
But until I cross that first thing off my list…I have cupcakes to tell ya about.
Carrot cake slathered with cream cheese frosting. A classic cake that come to find out, is a favorite of many. But ya wanna know why I think so many people enjoy this cake? The cream cheese frosting.
The cake is simply a vehicle to get cream cheese frosting from the mixing bowl into your mouth in the most tactful way. Because apparently eating frosting by the spoonful isn’t proper. Or at least shouldn’t be done in public. In the safety of your own home…I say go for it. But at work, just eat a cupcake. Your co-workers won’t think you weirder than what they already do.
Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen
2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
2 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1 Teaspoon Salt
2 Teaspoons Ground Cinnamon
1 Teaspoon Ground Ginger
1 Cup Sugar
1 Cup Light Brown Sugar, packed
1 + 1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil (canola oil)
4 Large Eggs
2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
3 Cups Peeled and Grated Carrots
1 Cup Walnut, roughly chopped
3/4 Cup Raisins
- 1 Stick Butter, room temperature
- 16 ounces Cream Cheese, room temperature
- 3 + 1/2 Cups Powdered Sugar
- 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line muffin tin with liners.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and ginger. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, beat together white sugar, brown sugar, and vegetable oil. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Mixing well between each addition. (scrape the sides and bottom of bowl too.) With mixer on low, slowly add flour mixture to wet ingredients and mix until just combined. Fold in carrots, walnuts, and raisins.
Fill lined muffin tins about 3/4 of the way full (about 1/4 cup of the batter) and bake in preheated oven for 14-16 minutes until toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool for about 5-10 minutes and then carefully remove cupcakes from tin and place on wire rack to completely cool before icing.
While cooling, prepare frosting.
In a large mixing bowl, beat together cream cheese, butter, salt, and vanilla. With mixer on low, slowly add powdered sugar. Place frosting in fridge for about 15 to 20 minutes before frosting cupcakes.
I store iced cupcakes in an airtight container in the fridge. This keeps the cream cheese frosting set and well refrigerated.