Cupcakes: Carrot, Cardamom, Cashew, and Bourbon

Sunday, January 25, 2009

First off, allow me to apologize for the picture. My place of work doesn't get picture friendly light, but allow me to go on. This cupcake is awesome. Period.

Originally, I was planning to use persimmons but, alas, there were none to be had. Switching gears in the store I went with carrots instead; a glad decision as their sweetness and flavor permeated this light and moist carrot cupcake. The mellow-sweet flavors of the roasted cashews support the carrots and add a nice crunch to the cake. The bourbon provides a slight bitter and tangy flavor that helps cut through the sweetness while the cardamom gives it spice and fragrance. With an over-whipped and glossy cream cheese frosting (also spiced with cardamom and bourbon) it is by and far the best carrot cake I have ever had, a sentiment echoed by many of my co-workers. The CEO even asked for the recipe. *insert loud peal of satisfaction*

I am going to tinker with this recipe a bit for something a bit more spring-ish when Easter rolls around.
Carrot, Cardamom, Cashew, Bourbon Cupcakes
Makes 2 Dozen

1 cup of cashews
1 pound of carrots
3 large eggs
1/2 cup of milk
1 teaspoon of lemon or lime juice
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 tablespoon of bourbon
2 cups of sugar
1 cup of vegetable oil
3 cups of all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon of baking soda
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1 teaspoon of salt
2 teaspoons of ground cardamom
1 teaspoon of cinnamon

1) Heat the oven for 350F. Place milk and lemon or lime juice together in a cup and allow to stand for 10 minutes.

2) Toast the cashews in the oven at 350F for 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool, then chop coarsely.

3) Rinse, peel, and grate the carrots.

4) Mix the carrots, milk and juice mixture, oil, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and bourbon together and whisk.

5) In another bowl mix the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and spice together.

6) Fold the flour mixture into the carrot mixture. Then fold in the cashews.

7) Scoop into cupcake papers and bake for 19-21 minutes at 350. Place on a wire rack to cool.

Spiced Bourbon Frosting
8 ounces of cream cheese
2 cups of powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon of cardamom
1 teaspoon of bourbon

Whip the cream cheese for 3 minutes at high speed. Add the bourbon and cardamom and whip another minute. Add the powdered sugar and whip for 5 minutes. Spread onto cooled cupcakes.


  1. Poor lighting or not I had to prevent myself from licking the computer monitor!

    They sound divine!

    Great job on swaying the CEO with a sweet treat too.

    (Hmm word verification is 'sways' odd!).

  2. wow....that looks delightful! Reminds me of the Indian Carrit Halva.....the addition of Bourbon is brilliant. Good One.

  3. Being asked for the recipe is the best compliment...

    The cupcake looked awesome. I love carrot cake and the addition of bourbon sounds great.

  4. Wow... just wow. I just baked some muffins (cranberry orange), but those look so good I may have to bake a few more now.

  5. glad your back to your cupcakes! This one sounds great.

  6. I love this! I might try it for the potluck we have at work this week.

  7. What a delicious grown-up cupcake, and I think the photo looks lovely :).

  8. Nice! I always love the effect of throwing a little booze in a typically grandmother staple recipe. Yours looks brilliant, especially with the addition of cardamom. Cannot wait to try this tonight, as I just bought a huge bag of carrots.

  9. any suggestions for an alternative to bourbon? (I don't have it in the house, don't think I'll drink it, and it seems silly to buy an entire bottle for less than 2T). Maybe some extra lime juice or cranberry juice, for a different flavor?

  10. Elizabeth - Maybe lime juice? I dunno. Do you have brandy?

  11. Cupcakes look great. I love the idea of bourbon frosting

  12. Hooray! A new cupcake recipe! I love your apple cardamom cupcakes!

  13. I rarely bake, but these sounded so delicious I had to try them! I made them Saturday and they are wonderful. With the frosting, without... I could eat these daily. Thank you for a lovely recipe! :)

  14. I made these this weekend - they are great! The addition of the spices and crunchy toasted nuts makes them something new. I subbed pecans for the cashews, and Irish whiskey for the Bourbon because that is what I had in the cabinet.

    The frosting came out a bit thin for my liking...perhaps it needs a few tablespoons of butter along with the cream cheese to firm up? I had one complaint that the aroma of cardamom in the frosting was overwhelming, but the flavor was still excellent.

    Would make again, thanks for the recipe!


Hey, you're leaving a comment! That's pretty darn cool, so thanks. If you have any questions or have found an error on the site or with a recipe, please e-mail me and I will reply as soon as possible.

Vanilla Garlic All rights reserved © Blog Milk Powered by Blogger