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Lulu's carrot cupcakes

Trader Joe's carries dried pineapple, which helps give these cupcakes their bright flavor. Makes 1 dozen medium cupcakes.

CUPCAKES

1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups grated carrots
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup chopped dried pineapple

1. Set oven to 350 degrees. Have on hand a muffin tin and line it with pleated paper or foil baking cups.

2. In a large bowl, sift together flour, cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon and set aside.

3. In a separate bowl, using a hand mixer on medium speed, beat eggs and sugar until smooth. Add the oil and mix until incorporated. Using a wooden spoon, stir the flour mixture into the egg mixture until incorporated, then fold in carrots, walnuts, and pineapple. Be careful not to overmix.

4. Pour batter into cups. Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pans on a wire rack before frosting.

FROSTING

4 ounces cream cheese,softened
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
2 cups confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon whole milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1. In a small bowl using a hand mixer on medium speed, beat the cream cheese and butter together until smooth, Add sugar, milk, and vanilla and beat another 5 minutes or until very fluffy.

Sandy Russo

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