For my dear friend Heesun's birthday, her sweet roomie had organized a surprise day trip to Sonoma Valley for a fun filled day of wine tasting, delicious food, and good company.
The seven of us rented a limousine and started the day off with a bottle of champagne on the way to our brunch at The Girl & the Fig in downtown Sonoma. If you haven't been here, be sure to stop by the next time you make your way up to Sonoma! The deelish brunch was followed by a couple of wine tasting sessions at wineries.
For this very special day, I decided to make a little birthday treat for the limo ride. I remembered that Heesun's favorite cake is carrot cake. A couple of years ago, her best friend Janice wanted to make a cake for her birthday and came over to get help in baking a carrot cake, Heesun's favorite.
So I made mini carrot cake with cinnamon cream cheese frosting. I've tried a bunch of different carrot cake recipes before and I think I finally found THE ONE. It is the recipe from Rose's Heavenly Cakes. Her cake is moist and light and has the perfect amount of spice.
Also, I grated the carrots a lot coarser than usual per instructions in the recipe. This really helped the subtle carrot flavor to come through and gave the cake a great texture.
For the frosting, I used Rose's Dreamy Creamy White Chocolate Frosting with a pinch of cinnamon for taste. I am an avid advocate of cream cheese frosting but most recipes call for an obscene amount of powdered sugar. This frosting does not use any powdered sugar but instead uses creamy melted white chocolate to to sweeten the whipped up cream cheese. The white chocolate flavor adds an extra dimension to this creamy frosting and gives it the perfect silky texture. The mini cupcakes were decorated with green tinted white chocolate decoration and an orange colored mini M&M.
The weather was beautiful, the wine was excellent, everyone had a blast and the birthday girl was happy and bubbly from the wine. It was just a perfect day!
Happy birthday Heesun! <3 div="">3>