by Karin Calloway
If you love restaurant desserts, with their multiple components, you needn’t think they’re beyond your grasp at home. With a few simple shortcuts and a few restaurant tricks you can create beautifully plated, delicious desserts at home. These Individual Carrot Cakes with Cream Cheese and Praline Sauce are a case in point.
The homemade Cream Cheese Ice Cream couldn’t be easier to whip up in your Viking blender. Three ingredients are blended together and then are frozen in wax-coated cups. The last component, Praline Sauce, can be replaced by heating some prepared caramel sauce and pecans in a small saucepan.
Combine carrot cake mix and other ingredients in a large bowl. Beat with an electric mixer according to package directions, for about 3 minutes. Pour into prepared pans. Bake individual pans for 12-15 minutes or the half-sheet pan for 20-25 minutes. Set aside to cool for 10 minutes. Invert onto cooling racks and cool completely. (If using the half-sheet pan, Invert onto a cutting board, remove the parchment paper and cut into 3-inch circles using a round cutter.) Store in a container with a tight-fitting lid until ready to serve.
Cream Cheese Ice Cream
To serve, place one of the individual carrot cakes in the center of a dessert plate. Top with Cream Cheese Ice Cream, drizzle with Praline Sauce, and garnish with white chocolate carrots.*
Makes 12 servings.
*White chocolate carrots make a great garnish and they’re simple to prepare without any special equipment. Simply melt a bar of good quality white chocolate in the microwave, stirring at one-minute intervals. Place one-third of the chocolate in a small bowl and color with two drops of green food coloring. Color the remaining chocolate with two drops each of red and yellow food coloring. Place the white chocolate in plastic sandwich bags. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Cut a tiny bit of the corner off of the orange bag and squeeze squiggly carrot shapes onto the paper. Cut a tiny corner off of the green bag and squeeze onto the paper to form the leaves. Freeze until firm.
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