Melanie's Carrot Cake with Citrus Peel and Mascarpone Frosting

TRH Melanie's Carrot Cake with Ginger (Citrus Peel) Mascarpone Frostin.jpg
Well I make no secret of the fact that I’m not a baker but have attempted some cheese cakes, madeira loaves and stuff but never a proper cake that has to be filled or iced. Please note that I didn’t tamper with Ina’s recipe for those of you who want to follow it as is – but I have indicated my changes, however minor where denoted but the method is unchanged. This has given me enormous encouragement (it didn’t flop) 😊.
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 (I used 1 tsp cinnamon and 1 tsp mixed spice)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1½ teaspoons kosher salt
1 pound carrots, grated (used 3 cups)
1 cup raisins (I don’t eat raisins, so I used dried mixed berries – texture the same)
1 cup chopped walnuts (thought I had, but used pecans instead)
Ginger Mascarpone Frosting (recipe follows**)
Crystallized ginger (not in syrup), chopped, for garnish (This I searched for at quite a few stores – the closest I came up with is citrus peel)
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Grease 2 (9 x 2-inch) round cake pans, line the bottoms with parchment paper, and grease and flour the pans.
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.
With the mixer on low, slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ones.
In a medium bowl, toss the carrots, raisins, walnuts, and the 1 tablespoon of flour.
Stir into the batter with a rubber spatula.
Divide the batter between the prepared pans and smooth the tops.
Bake for 10 minutes, lower the heat to 175 degrees, and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.
Cool in the pans for 15 minutes, turn out onto a baking rack, and cool completely.
Place one cake on a flat serving plate, rounded side down.
Spread half the frosting on the top (not the sides).
Place the second cake on top of the first cake, rounded side up.
Ginger Mascarpone Frosting** (Frosts one 9-inch Cake)
12 ounces Italian mascarpone cheese, at room temperature (used 3 tubs)
4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature (used 2 tubs)
2 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons heavy cream
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract (used a whole tsp)
1/8 cup minced crystallized ginger (not in syrup) (I used citrus peel)
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt (omitted)
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the mascarpone, cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar, cream, and vanilla together for about 1 minute, until light and fluffy.
Add the crystallized ginger and salt and beat for 30 seconds more.
Garnish with citrus peel.
Recipe Credit – Ina Garten
Prepared, tried and tested by: Melanie Kramar 
Addendum: A fellow blogger GastroGranny contacted me once she saw this recipe and said that she’s making something very similar.  Please hop over and see her RAINBOW RUSTIC WHITE CAKE WITH MASCARPONE CREAM

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