an ebelskiver pan (preferably cast iron); a wooden skewer
For the filling: Mix together the cream cheese, pecans, raisins and confectioners' sugar in a small bowl. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
For the pancakes: Whisk together the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in a medium bowl.
Whisk together the milk, sour cream and egg yolks in another medium bowl. Whisk the yolk mixture into the flour mixture until just combined, then stir in the carrots (the batter will be lumpy). Allow the batter to rest while you whip the egg whites.
Beat the egg whites in a separate medium bowl with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form, about 1 minute. Gently fold the egg whites into the batter.
Heat an ebelskiver pan over medium heat for 4 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium low and brush 4 of the wells generously with melted butter so there is some butter pooling at the bottom of each (the butter should barely sizzle when it hits the pan). Fill each buttered well with about 1 tablespoon batter. Repeat with the butter and batter in the remaining 4 wells. (You are working in batches to prevent the butter from burning.) Allow the batter to cook slightly around the edges, about 30 seconds.
Carefully spoon 1 heaping teaspoon of the filling into the center of each ebelskiver and gently press down into the batter. Spoon about 1 teaspoon additional batter on top of the filling in each so the wells are very full and the filling is covered. Cook until the bottom crusts are golden brown, an additional 2 1/2 minutes.
Push a wooden skewer through the raw batter and into the bottom crust of each ebelskiver to turn it slowly. Allow the raw batter to flow back into the well and create a new bottom crust. (If an ebelskiver does not slide up easily or hold its shape, slide it back to its original position and give it more time to cook and set.) Cook until the new undersides are golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes more. Check all sides of the ebelskivers: If there are pale spots on some, turn them pale-side down so that they brown against the bottom of the pan for a few seconds. When they are done, the ebelskivers should be deep golden brown all over and a skewer inserted deep into the pancakes, avoiding the filling, should come out clean. If you find that some are cooking much more quickly than others, rotate the pan occasionally to even out the heat. Remove the ebelskivers from the pan.
Repeat the process with the remaining melted butter, batter and filling. By the second batch, the pan will be significantly hotter, so you may need to reduce the heat or remove the pan from the heat occasionally to ensure even cooking. Dust the ebelskivers with confectioners' sugar and serve warm.
When measuring flour, we spoon it into a dry measuring cup and level off excess. (Scooping directly from the bag compacts the flour, resulting in dry baked goods.)
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