"A sister is one of the nicest things
that can happen to anyone."
Today is my sister's birthday. We're miles apart, but that doesn't stop me from baking her a special cupcake and shipping it off to her...hoping FedEx takes really, really, good care of them.
Last June, Kelly, Ari, and I took a "road trip" from Kentucky to Virginia to visit my sister. She lives in the Shenandoah Valley and has the most breathtaking views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Our oldest daughter, Erin, flew in from New Jersey and we had a Sister's Weekend! It was perfect and we had fun reminiscing, as well as, adding new memories. Memories that we didn't realize would be the last time the four of us would be together.
Banana Cupcakes with Berry~Berry Jam Filling and
Peanut Butter Buttercream
Peanut Butter Buttercream
Homemade Peanut Butter:
2 cups shelled, roasted, salted peanuts
1 T peanut oil
This will make approximately 1 1/2 cups of peanut butter
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
6 cups confectioner's sugar
1 tsp. Peanut Butter Flavoring
2 tsp. Vanilla Extract
2-3 T Heavy Cream
Make the Banana~Fana cupcakes or you can use a vanilla cupcake recipe. I used the "tulip" cupcake liners and the recipe made 18 cupcakes.
They baked in a 350F-degree convection oven for 22 minutes. If you don't have convection, adjust time to result in a golden brown cupcake. Don't over bake! Remember, the cupcakes will continue to bake slightly even after they're removed from the oven and you want a tender cake. Cool completely.
While they are cooling.
Make the homemade peanut butter:
In a food processor or blender, put the peanuts and oil and pulse at first, then turn ON until the peanuts turn to a smooth paste.
This is a really good peanut butter and makes wonderful sandwiches. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside.
Peanut Butter Buttercream:
Beat the butter until smooth. Add 4 cups of the confectioners' sugar, the flavorings, and the peanut butter. Beat until combined. Add the last 2 cups of confectioners' sugar, adding 2-3 tablespoons of heavy cream to create a fluffy buttercream.
To assemble the cupcakes, use an apple corer to remove a "plug" from the center of the cupcake and fill with the jam. Using a piping bag will make this easier.
Fill another piping bag with a large 6B tip to pipe the buttercream. I placed a small plug over the jam opening before piping the buttercream.
Finish the cakes by sprinkling some additional peanuts on top. The cakes came out perfect and when I cut one in half, you can see the center is just oozing with delicious jam. Enjoy!