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    Carrot Cake Bars with Cream Cheese Swirl

    Source of Recipe

    From "Small Batch Baking" by Saura Kline

    Recipe Introduction

    "In my opinion, carrot cake and cream cheese go together like peanut butter and jelly. If you have a food processor, you can pulse the carrots in the machine faster than you can shred them by hand."

    List of Ingredients

    For the cream cheese swirl:
    ◦ cup cream cheese, at room temperature
    ◦ 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    ◦ Pinch salt

    For the carrot cake:
    ◦ Nonstick baking spray
    ◦ 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
    ◦ 1 teaspoon cinnamon
    ◦ cup granulated sugar
    ◦ teaspoon salt
    ◦ 1 egg
    ◦ teaspoon baking soda
    ◦ cup all-purpose flour
    ◦ cup shredded carrots (1 to 2 carrots)


    To make the cream cheese swirl:
    In a small bowl, combine the cream cheese, sugar, and salt. Stir with a spatula until the mixture is smooth. Set aside.

    To make the carrot cake:
    Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly spray a loaf pan with nonstick baking spray, and then line it with parchment paper, allowing some parchment to go up 2 inches on the side.

    In a medium bowl, combine the melted butter, cinnamon, sugar, and salt. Whisk until smooth. Add the egg and whisk to combine. Use a spatula to stir in the baking soda and flour. Fold just until the batter is smooth. Fold in the carrots last. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan.

    Drop spoonfuls of the cream cheese swirl into the carrot cake batter. Take a toothpick and swirl the cream cheese into the batter.

    Bake the carrot cake for 30 minutes. Put the pan in the refrigerator and let it cool for 1 hour. Lift the cake out of the pan onto a cutting board by holding the ends of the parchment paper. Cut into six bars by cutting in half lengthwise and then into thirds widthwise. Store in an airtight container.

    Makes 6 bars

    Variation Tip:
    Substitute an equal amount of shredded zucchini for the shredded carrots for a different twist.




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