Sarah Master of Barbette Shows Us How to Make the Perfect Carrot Cake

It's no secret that Barbette makes some of the best carrot cake in the Twin Cities. They provide the carrot cake for a number of spots in Kim Bartmann's family of restaurants and it is a top seller anywhere it is offered.

So Hot Dish thought it would be great to get the recipe and share it with all of our readers. When we asked the team over at Barbette for the recipe we got laughed out of their inbox. It's a trade secret and not one they are keen to part with. But the team offered us something even better than the Barbette recipe...

See also: Signature Dish: Barbette's chef Sarah Master


Barbette said we could come down and grab exclusive video of Sarah Master working up a special carrot cake just for us. It is a departure from their standard offering, but the results are perfect. Give the recipe a try after you check out Sarah preparing it in the Barbette kitchen.


Base 2 cups of sugar 1.5 cups of mayonnaise 2 teaspoons of baking powder 2 teaspoons of baking soda 1.5 teaspoons of cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg teaspoon of salt 2 cups of flour 4 eggs 3 cups of carrot shavings 1/2 a teaspoon of vanilla

Frosting 2 and 1/4 cups powdered sugar, sifted 1.5 lbs cream cheese, softened (3 8 oz. bricks) 3/4 lb butter, softened strawberries, for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Step 1: Combine sugar and mayonnaise and beat on high until fluffy and ingredients are fully incorporated, scraping down the sides of as you go.

Step 2: In a separate bowl combine all dry ingredients -- baking powder through flour -- and whisk to combine. Set aside.

Step 3: With mixer at medium speed add eggs one a time along with vanilla. When eggs are fully incorporated begin adding flour mixture very slowly. When it is fully incorporated scrape down the sides and mix at medium speed for 10 seconds.

Step 4: Add carrot shavings and gently fold into batter, careful not to overmix.

Step 5: Grease two 9-inch round cake pans. Line bottoms with parchment paper. Distribute batter evenly between two pans. Each pan should be about a third of the way full.

Step 6: Place cake pans on sheet pan or cookie sheet and place in preheated oven. Bake for 30 minutes.

Step 7: After 30 minutes, rotate cakes to ensure even baking and bake for an additional 25-30 minutes.

While the cake is baking, prepare the frosting.

Step 8: Combine butter and cream cheese in a mixing bowl and whip, scraping down sides as you go until fully incorporated. Slow mixer speed and add powdered sugar little by little. Beat until fully combined with no visible sugar remaining.

Step 9: Remove cakes from oven, verifying they are baked through in the middle, and set aside to cool down or place in fridge to cool quicker.

Step 10: Once cakes are cool, unmold, turning upside down onto a flat surface. Remove parchment paper from bottom of cake. Wrap cakes in plastic wrap and place in freezer for one hour.

Step 11: Remove cakes from freezer and unwrap. Using a bread knife trim rough edges from top of cake to make level.

Step 12: Place one of the cakes onto cake stand or plate. Using an offset spatula or a large knife, distribute one third of the frosting evenly over the top of the cake including the edges. Place other cake round on top of the frosted cake. Spread a thin layer of frosting over the top and sides of the layered cake. Place in cooler for 10 minutes to set frosting.

Step 13: Remove the cake from cooler. Use remaining frosting to apply an even layer all over the top and sides of the cake, turning the cake. Slice and serve garnished with strawberries.

Video production by Sean McPherson for City Pages. Music courtesy of Sean McPherson.

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