Thursday, September 01, 2011

Hurricane Cupcakes

So what's a girl to do when there's a hurricane barreling up the coast? Do some baking while the power's still on, that's what! We have a gas stove, so a power outage wouldn't really keep us from cooking, however, I'm not all that thrilled with the idea of manually lighting the oven as it fills with gas. Right. Anyhoo, I decided that we would need baked goods to munch while we played cards in the dark, so I whipped up a batch of cupcakes. I used my standard cupcake recipe, omitting the melted chocolate component and adding a bit of sweet spices. Not enough to make spice cake, mind you, just a bit to add a hint of flavor.

Fellow food blogger Nakiya, of Taste of Baltimore, had challenged me to make something with the Biscoff Spread I found at the new ShopRite in Timonium. Biscoff Spread, made from crushed Biscoff cookies, is predominately cinnamon flavored, so I thought it would make a great addition to the frosting for my lightly spiced cupcakes.

I suppose I should call these "Nakiya Cupcakes," even though it's probably not fair that she won't taste one. Not from this batch at least...the few that are left are quite stale. Next time!

Nakiya Cupcakes

1 cup flour
3/4 cup almond flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon Chinese five spice powder
1/3 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup almond milk (can use regular or soy milk)

Preheat oven to 325F. Line muffin pans with 18 cupcake liners.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, almond flour, baking powder, salt, and spices.

In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until light. Beat in eggs one at a time, then add the vanilla extract. Alternate stirring in flour mixture and almond milk, ending with flour. Mix until no streaks of flour remain, but do not overmix.

Divide batter evenly into prepared muffin cups.

Bake at 325F for 20-23 minutes until a tester comes out clean and the tops spring back when lightly pressed with a fingertip. Cool on a wire rack.

Makes 18 cupcakes.

Biscoff Frosting

1 stick of room temperature butter
1/4 cup Biscoff spread
7 ounces marshmallow fluff
3/4 cup confectioners sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt

Combine the butter, Biscoff spread, and marshmallow in a bowl, and with a hand or stand mixer, beat on medium until completely smooth. Reduce speed to low and add confectioners sugar, vanilla, and salt. Continue to beat until smooth and fluffy. Distribute evenly among cupcakes using a pastry bag or, as I did, with a knife and spoon (was feeling lazy).

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