Mince-spiced carrot cupcakes

Yesterday I felt like baking. It relaxes me and it helps that I always have a willing taster in my ‘bear’. I had lots of carrots from the local farmers’ market and have always wanted to try my hand at making carrot cake so I googled recipes and tried the first one I found.DSC_2059

I used http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/470640/carrot-and-cream-cheese-cupcakes but did not have all of the listed ingredients so had to make a few risky substitutions. This resulted in the juiciest spicy carrot cupcakes ever!


Ingredients from online source

  • 175g brown muscovado sugar
  •  100g wholemeal self-raising flour
  •  100g self-raising flour
  •  1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  •  2 tsp mixed spice
  •  zest 1 orange
  •  2 eggs
  •  150ml sunflower oil
  •  200g carrots, grated
  •  orange coloured sprinkles, to decorate


Ingredients I used

  • 175g demarara/granulated sugar
  •  200g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp mincemeat
  • 2 eggs
  • 150ml olive oil
  • 200g carrots, grated
  • 2tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp milk

*I have omitted to copy the ingredients list for the icing as I did not use it. I cheated again and used ready made icing for my photographs!*

This was the method I used for the cakes only:


  • Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 and line a 12-hole muffin tin with cases.
  • In a large mixing bowl, mix the sugar, flour, baking powder and mincemeat.
  • Whisk together the eggs and oil, add the vanilla extract, then stir into the dry ingredients with the grated carrot.
  • Add milk until mixture becomes a looser consistency.
  • Divide the mixture between cases and bake for 20-22 mins until a skewer poked in comes out clean.
  • Cool on a wire rack before icing (optional)

Makes 12


Why not give them a try!


A wobbly start…

Hello again!

I have had a bit of a crisis recently. I’m not sure whether it is my new job or feeling like I want more out of life or just generally feeling in a rut. Anyway, when I feel a little lost, and most unlike myself, I tend to isolate myself from the world. The start of 2014 was full of bereavement and stress, despite the fact that I had secured a new job based in London, I just felt unsettled, out of sorts and emotional.

A heart shaped hole I found on my walk...

This morning, I went for a walk in a little green space near my flat as the sun looked so inviting. I needed to clear my head and get myself together, motivated and relaxed. I took a stroll, watching the joggers and dog-walkers go by. I listened to the boisterous chants of the children playing on the jungle gym and swing set and the gentle humming of bees hovering over daisies and daffodils. At the risk of sounding any more poetic, I think that it is safe to say that I had a most therapeutic walk and returned back to the flat feeling calmer. It’s amazing what some fresh air can do isn’t it?


What do you like to do when your hard working batteries need recharging?