We have adapted Ina Garten’s recipe for ginger carrot cake, without the ginger, nuts,  or raisins; we top it with Mascarpone Cream cheese frosting.

2 cups sugar
1- 1/3 cups vegetable oil
3 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons baking soda
1-1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 pound carrots, grated

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Grease 2 (9 x 2-inch) round cake pans, or 12 cupcake size pans if not using cupcake papers.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the sugar, oil, and eggs on medium-high speed for 2 minutes, until light yellow and thickened. Stir in the vanilla. In another bowl, sift together the 2 cups of flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. Add this to grated carrots, coating gently with the flour mixture. With the mixer on low, slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ones.
Divide the batter between the prepared pans and smooth the tops. Bake for 10 minutes, lower the heat to 350 degrees, and bake for 20-25 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool in the pans for 12 minutes, turn out onto a baking rack, and cool completely.

We prefer a lightly whipped cream cheese frosting dollop on the top of each small cake with a sprinkle of white chocolate and toasted coconut flakes. Fresh fruit in season such as strawberries or peaches,  on the side, adds balance to the sweetness and definitely adds to the enjoyment.


12 ounces Italian mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
2 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the mascarpone, cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar, salt, cream, and vanilla together for about 2-3 minutes, until light and fluffy.  Dollop generously on top of each small cake. Or if making traditional layer cakes spread half frosting on middle then half on top, without frosting sides. Serve with slightly macerated strawberries when in season.



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