Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Candied Carrot Curls

This is a recipe for candied carrot curls to top carrot cake. Our carrot cake recipe is  here

She was looking for a cute carrot cake topper last week for some birthday cupcakes. Unfortunately, all of her cake/cupcake decorating supplies are back in the USA. Using a one euro tip kit (with the help of her handy dandy assistant cutting off the tops and reshaping the tip to be wider and better for cupcakes) she came up with a pretty cute and easy solution. Originally, she was going to make little carrots, one of the easiest designs in the cupcake design kingdom. However, with no green food coloring (for the carrot tops) and none sold at the only store nearby, she gave up and went for something different. Using the idea of carrots as garnish for regular meals, she found many recipes online with suggestions on how to turn a boring carrot into a candied treat for any cake or cupcake.

For an entire batch of cupcakes:
1 carrot (larger is better)
1 cup sugar
1 cup water

Peel the carrot until the entire outside layer is gone. Then start on one side and peel the carrot down until it becomes flat and the pieces coming off are quite large.

We think more is always better (and leaves room for mistakes) so kept going until the bottom ending up with about 20 peels.

Boil the water in a small saucepan. Add the sugar and stir until dissolved. Add the carrot peels. Let boil for 15 minutes (uncovered).

During this time, preheat the oven to 100 C (210 F).

Once 15 minutes is up, drain the carrots. You do not need the sugar water so just throw it away.

Lay the carrots out on a tray or cookie sheet. Make sure to use parchment paper on the tray. The pieces should not overlap.

Bake for 30 minutes. During this time we recommend you make sure you cleaned your sieve or strainer. If the sugar dries it will be horrible to clean!

Remove the carrots after 30 minutes but leave the oven on. Using a wooden spoon, wrap each carrot around the handle and slide it off the end. Place the curls back onto the tray.

Cook for another 45 minutes or until dry. If you live in a higher altitude the cooking times will be much less!

Once your carrots are finished you can use them right away or store them in an air tight container. Do not leave them on cupcakes overnight because they will become soggy. She left them in a container for three days before using and noticed that they lost a lot of their crunch. For this reason, next time she would make them the day they are needed.

We used these to show that they were nut free

We topped those with nuts inside with extra nuts
Also, she was surprised at how big the curls were (most were too big to look very nice on a cupcake). Next time she would cut the peels in half both width and lengthwise. She thought she would be able to after they were dry but by then they were too brittle.

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