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Episode 2 - MINI LEMON & CARROT CAKES

Get a printer friendly version the recipe for Mini Lemon and Carrot Cakes HERE.

Hello friends and foodies! Thank you for tuning in for another episode of Taylor Thyme!

Mini Carrot Cake and Mini Lemon Cake

In this episode, Taylor will be showing us how to make lovely Mini Lemon and Carrot Cakes.

Today’s dessert is the perfect treat to celebrate the last of summer’s pool days and firefly nights. A perfect balance of sweet and refreshing, these cakes are sure to be a hit at any cookout, slumber party, or sunsets on the porch!

Some notes before we get started:

  • We used a stand mixer with a paddle attachment for this recipe, but mixing by hand will work just fine.
  • You will need a piping bag and tips for decorating, we recommend using an interchangeable piping tip so you can experiment with fun designs.
  • Baking is fun for folks of all ages, but children should always have adult supervision when in the kitchen.

 

Grab your apron and ingredients and get started!

Mini Lemon Cakes

You will need the following ingredients:

Lemon Cake:

  • 3 cups sifted all-purpose flour*
  • 2 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
  • 1 and 3/4 cups) granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
  • 1 heaping Tablespoon lemon zest (about 2 lemons)
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)


Buttercream:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened (1 stick)
  • 8oz cream cheese
  • 4 cups sifted powdered sugar


Lemon Curd:

  • 2 whole eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup corn starch
  • 6 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened


Now let’s get baking!


Steps for Lemon Cake

  • Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together. Set aside.
  • Beat butter and sugar together on high speed until smooth and creamy, about 3 minutes
  • Beat in eggs and vanilla extract on high speed until combined, about 2 minutes
  • With the mixer on low speed, add dry ingredients just until combined. 
  • With the mixer still running on low, add buttermilk, lemon zest, and lemon juice and mix just until combined. 
  • Pour batter evenly into cake pans.
  • Heat oven to 350 degrees, bake for 21-26 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.


Steps for Buttercream:

  1. Add butter and cream cheese to large mixing bowl and beat on low speed until combined and smooth.
  2. Add powdered sugar to butter and cream cheese mixture and mix on low until combined (optional: add a teaspoon of vanilla extract!). Scrape down sides of bowl with a rubber spatula to ensure all ingredients are combined.
  3. Mix on medium-high speed until whipped.

 

Steps for Lemon Curd:

  1. Combine all ingredients into a medium sized saucepan and whisk thoroughly.
  2. Place saucepan on stovetop over medium heat and whisk continuously until curd reaches a pudding-like consistency. DO NOT STOP STIRRING WHILE ON HEAT.
  3. Once curd reaches thickened consistency, add butter and stir until melted.
  4. Strain into separate small bowl to remove leftover lumps.

 

Putting it All Together:

  1. After cooling and leveling your cake, cut circles out of it using a cookie cutter.
  2. Brush cakes with simple syrup (make your own by boiling water and sugar at a 1:1 ratio until dissolved!).
  3. Using a glass or cup to hold your piping bag, fill the bag with cream cheese icing and attach tip (we used a circular tip).
  4. Pipe a dollop of buttercream on the center of each cake. Smooth over top of cake using offset spatula or butterknife.
  5. Spoon a dollop of lemon curd on center of cake.
  6. Pipe a border of buttercream around the lemon curd.
  7. Place second cake layer on top and repeat steps 4-7 to create 2 or 3 layers, smoothing any leftover icing on the sides with offset spatula.
  8. Pipe buttercream in small dollops around the top of cake (we used a decorative star tip, but feel free to experiment with different tips for different looks. Have fun with it!). Optional: add your choice of sprinkles for extra sparkle.


Your mini lemon cakes are all done and ready for the party! Reward yourself for your hard work with a tasty cake. Pick the one with extra sprinkles, you’ve earned it.

Mini Carrot Cakes

You will need the following ingredients:

Carrot Cake:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups grated carrots 
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
  • ½ cup raisins 
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup canola 
  • 4 large eggs

 

Caramel filling:

  • 1 cup caramel chews (or homemade caramel)
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream

 

Buttercream:

  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
  • 8oz cream cheese
  • 4 cups sifted powdered sugar


Now let’s get baking!

Steps for Carrot Cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees
  2. Whisk together the flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda and salt and set aside. In another bowl, stir together the carrots, chopped nuts, and raisins.
  3. Working in a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with a whisk, beat the sugar and oil together until smooth. Add the eggs one by one and continue to beat until the batter is even smoother. If you are working in a mixer, reduce the speed to low, if you're working by hand switch to a large rubber spatula, and gently stir in the flour mixture. Mix only until the dry ingredients disappear. Stir in the chunky ingredients.
  4. Divide the batter among the baking pans and slide the pans into the oven. Bake the cakes for 40 to 50 minutes.
  5. Cakes are done when a toothpick is inserted and comes out clean. Transfer your cakes to a cooling rack and let cool for ten minutes. After ten minutes, flip your cakes out of pan directly onto cooling rack. Let cool for until cakes reach room temperature.


Steps for Buttercream:

  1. Add butter and cream cheese to large mixing bowl and beat until combined and smooth.
  2. Add powdered sugar to butter and cream cheese mixture and mix on low until combined (optional: add a teaspoon of vanilla extract!). Scrape down sides of bowl with a rubber spatula to ensure all ingredients are combined.
  3. Mix on medium-high speed until whipped.


Putting it all together:

  1. After cooling and leveling your cake, cut circles out of it using a cookie cutter.
  2. Brush cakes with simple syrup.
  3. Melt caramel chews and heavy cream in microwave in 30 second increments, stirring in between until smooth. Let cool.
  4. Using a glass or cup to hold your piping bag, fill the bag with cream cheese icing and attach tip (we used a circle tip).
  5. Pipe a dollop of buttercream onto the center of first cake. Smooth over top of cake using an offset spatula or butterknife.
  6. Pipe a border of buttercream around the top of cake.
  7. Spoon a dollop of caramel into the center of cake.
  8. Place second cake layer on top and repeat steps 4-7 to create 2 or 3 layers, smoothing any leftover buttercream on the sides with offset spatula.
  9. Pipe buttercream in small dollops around the top of cake (we used a decorative star tip, but feel free to experiment with different tips for different looks. Have fun with it!) Optional: top cake with candied carrots for extra flair.


Your mini carrot cakes are all done and ready for the party! Reward yourself for your hard work with a tasty cake. Pick the one with extra frosting, you’ve earned it.

Get a printer friendly version the recipe for Mini Lemon and Carrot Cakes HERE.

Thank you for joining us for a tasty episode of Taylor Thyme, and catch new episodes every Thursday at 7pm on ECHO by Blue Ridge PBS!