Spectacular Cupcakes

I bake a lot of cupcakes. I really enjoy it. When I saw the Cupcake Spectacular blogging event, I knew I had to participate. I had a hard time deciding what my favorite cupcake flavor is… I have a few favorites that I’ve already made, but I wanted to make something special for this event…

I decided to make these vanilla raspberry cupcakes. They turned out perfectly light and fluffy. I am usually a big fan of chocolate, but sometimes a dessert can be spectacular without it. This cupcake is just that.

Hubby has turned into a cupcake connoisseur. As my primary taste tester, he has tried quite a few combinations of cupcakes over the past year. He often helps me make the final decision on how much frosting or what filling to put in a cupcake. He said these were the perfect ratio of cake to filling to frosting. He said they’re definitely one of his favorites!

(And yes, that is pink wood paneling in our dining room that matches the frosting perfectly. Hence the kitchen renovation that will be starting soon).

Vegan White Cupcakes (from Crazy about Cupcakes) – makes 20
1/2 cup vegan margarine, at room temperature
1 1/3 cups unbleached cane sugar
3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
2 cups soy or rice milk
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
1 tsp almond extract

Preheat over to 350F. Insert liners into a medium cupcake pan.

In a large bowl cream together the sugar and margarine with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes.

In a separate bowl mix the flour, baking powder, and salt.

Add the dry ingredients to the creamed mixture, alternating with the soy or rice milk. Add the vanilla and almond extract and beat for 2 minutes at medium speed.

Fill the cupcake liners three-quarters full. Bake for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of cupcakes comes out clean. Cool cupcakes in the pan.
Raspberry Buttercream – from A whisk and a Spoon – originally from Baking Illustrated – makes 2 cups
2 large eggs
1/2 cup (3.5 oz) sugar
1 t vanilla extract
pinch of salt
8 oz unsalted butter, softened but still cool, cut into pieces
1/3 cup seedless raspberry jam, loosened with a squirt of lemon juice
1/4 t cinnamon
Bring a few inches of water to a simmer in a medium saucepot. In the bowl of a standing mixer, whisk together the eggs, sugar, vanilla and a pinch of salt. Set the bowl over the simmering water (making a double boiler). Whisk gently but constantly until the mixture reaches 160°F. It should be thin and foamy.

Transfer the bowl to the mixer and whip until light, airy and room temperature. This should take about five minutes. Reduce the speed and whip in the butter, piece by piece. If it looks curdled halfway through, it should come together as you add the remaining butter.

Once all the butter is incorporated, beat on high speed for about a minute until light and fluffy. Add the raspberry jam and cinnamon and beat until just incorporated. You can refrigerate, covered, for up to five days.
Cupcake Assembly
Once the cupcakes have cooled, fill with about 1 tsp seedless raspberry preserves. I like to use the Cone Method.

Frost with a big dollop of raspberry buttercream.

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5 Responses to “Spectacular Cupcakes”

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    1
    Arfi Binsted — March 15, 2008 at 2:04 pm

    The filling is so neat tucked in the cupcakes, Jen, that is perfect! Nice swirl you have created there, too. I am pretty sure your beloveds are spoiled!

    Thank you for your participation on Cupcakes Spectacular 2008.

    Cheers,
    ab

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    2
    Christina — March 15, 2008 at 3:22 pm

    Wow, those look fantastic! I love the cone method, that is something I will be trying very soon!

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    3
    kellypea — March 16, 2008 at 11:13 pm

    Hahaha! My hunkster is my primo taste tester, too! And that filling in those cupcakes is amazing. I love how perfect the frosting is. Lovely.

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    4
    Jaime — March 18, 2008 at 1:15 am

    what a cute cupcake! i love raspberries…

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    5
    CB — March 21, 2008 at 4:05 pm

    Your cupcake has been chosen for ATC’s Weekly Cupcake Collection! Click the link to see more. Looking forward to your next cupcake creation!

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