Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Drunken Irish Cupcakes

I came across this recipe in the March/April issue of edibleSeattle, a magazine devoted to the seasonal bounty in the Puget Sound.  It's just one of the many "edible" magazines available in the United States; you probably have one in your city or region.

This issue had an article on "Revolutionary Cupcakes" that caught my eye.  The bakery featured is Cupcake Royale and they are devoted to quality local ingredients, which is an important factor in today's topic on health and the food we consume.  I know I've become more aware of what we consume since our daughter, Kelly was diagnosed with breast cancer last year.  Since I'm not about to stop baking, I need to use the best ingredients and know where these ingredients come from.

These cupcakes are definitely "for adults only" because of the Irish whiskey in the buttercream, but you could easily make them kid-friendly by substituting milk for the whiskey.

Sour Cream Vanilla Cupcakes

3/4 cup organic whole milk
1/2 cup full-fat sour cream
2 tsps. vanilla
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups sugar
3 large eggs

Preheat oven to 350F-degrees.  Line 24 standard muffin cups with paper liners.

In a small mixing bowl, stir together the milk, sour cream and vanilla.  In another bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder and salt.

In the bowl of a KitchenAid mixer, combine the butter and sugar.  Beat together on medium speed until the mixture is light and fluffy, about one minute.  Add the eggs one at a time, beating a medium speed for a full 30 seconds after each addition.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula.  Pour half of the milk mixture and beat for another 30 seconds, scraping the bowl once again.  Add half of the dry ingredients and beat another 30 seconds, scraping the bowl again.  Repeat this process once more, until all the liquid and dry mixtures have been incorporated and the batter is thick and smooth.

Fill lined cup 2/3 of the way with batter. Bake 22-27 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.  Let cool while you make the frosting.

Whiskey Maple Buttercream

1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup Irish whiskey
5 T Grade B maple syrup
1/2 tsp. salt
4 cups confectioners' sugar

Using an electric mixture set to medium speed, bet butter, whiskey, syrup, salt and one cup of confectioners' sugar together until smooth.  Add remaining powdered sugar, one cup at a time until frosting is thick, but fluffy and spreadable.

I sprinkled my cupcakes with Pearlized Gold Sugar Crystals. Enjoy!

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