Banana Cupcakes, a Few Ways33

Posted by chockylit in Bananas, Cheese, Chocolate, Experimental Recipe, Nuts, Spices (Sunday April 23, 2006 at 5:59 pm)

I had request for cupcakes this weekend. They had to be good for breakfast (muffins) and have banana in them. I didn’t want to make a muffin, so I stuck with a cupcake recipe and planned to go light on the frosting. I made two attempts (two full attempts, but a total of three different recipes) and I am not 100% happy with any of them. I will print the best of the recipe bases, but the base recipe needs work. The cupcakes tasted yummy, but the texture was too dense, hence why it needs work.

The combination most appropriate for breakfast is the pecan-cinnamon. The yummiest (in my book anyway) was the macadamia-white chocolate. I didn’t like the pistachio so much. I don’t blame it on the pistachio, but on the recipe…

Mise En Place for Fillings
I made a few flavor combinations – toasted pecan and cinnamon, macadamia nut and white chocolate, and pistachio and cardamom.

1/3 cup pecans, toasted 5 minutes at 350 degrees, chopped
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup macadamia nuts, chopped
1/4 cup white chocolate, chopped
1/3 cup pistachios, shelled & chopped
1 teaspoon cardamom

1. Prepare all the fillings and set aside.

Banana Cupcakes
makes 22-24 cupcakes / 350 degree oven

3 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 medium bananas
1/2 cup buttermilk
3 large eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla

1. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
2. With a blender or food processor, blend banana and buttermilk until the banana is broken up.
3. In another bowl, combine banana/buttermilk, eggs, vegetable oil, and vanilla.
4. Fold dry mixture into the wet mixture.
5. Divide batter into three bowls. In one bowl, fold in toasted pecans and cinnamon. In the second bowl, fold in macadamia nuts and white chocolate. In the third bowl, fold in pistachios and cardamom.
6. Scoop out into cupcake papers.
7. Bake at 350 degree oven for ~20-22 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean (start checking after 20 minutes).


baked cupcakes

Thick Cream Cheese Frosting

6 ounces or 3/4 package of Philly cream cheese
1/2 stick butter
4-5 cups sifted powdered sugar

1. Bring butter to room temperature by letting it sit out for 1 or 2 hours.
2. Sift powdered sugar into a bowl or onto parchment.
3. Beat butter and cheese at medium speed until creamy.
4. Add half of the sugar. Beat until combined.
5. Gradually add remaining sugar (more if you have to) until you get to the consistency and sweetness you like. For this recipe, I was going for a very thick frosting.


scooping frosting

Assembly
1. Scoop a bit of frosting on to each cooled cupcake.
2. Smooth frosting into a thin layer.
3. Top with caramelized banana disks, white chocolate dipped macadamia nuts, whatever you please…

I don’t have many pictures as I had a guest over while I was baking. My guest was a fellow baking enthusiast who I met through the blog. She is a caterer and cooking instructor in the bay area. She is mid-remodel and wanted to see what I had done. She brought delicious Vietnamese sandwiches. It was great to share tips. I am going to try some out in the weeks to come.

Carrot Orange Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting and Candied Orange Peel Nest24

Posted by chockylit in Carrots, Cheese, Citrus, Nuts, Spices, Step-by-Step Photos (Sunday April 16, 2006 at 3:55 pm)

I normally don’t feel very inspired to make themed cupcakes for holidays. I consider it dangerous territory into which I don’t dare tread. I never say never, though, that’s for sure. And this past week I was indeed inspired by the colorful caramel robin’s eggs that were for sale at Peet’s Coffee. The vibrant blue of the egg was screaming for something orange…

These cupcakes ended up quite delicious – very moist cake with a touch of spice, creamy frosting, and candied orange peel that provides a nice burst of orange flavor and a chewy, crunchy texture. The egg is yummy on it’s own.

Cupcakes
makes 30 cupcakes / 350 degree oven

1 cup pecans
2-3 medium oranges
1 pound carrots
3 large eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
pinch of allspice
pinch of ground nutmeg

1. Toast pecans in a 350 degree oven for 5 minutes.
2. Remove from the oven, let them cool, then chop coarsely.
3. Peel oranges and puree in a blender or food processor. Measure out 1/2 cup of the liquidy pulp.
4. Peel, rinse, then grate carrots coarsely.
5. In a large bowl, combine orange pulp, carrots, eggs, buttermilk, vanilla, sugar, and vegetable oil.
6. In another bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
7. Fold flour mixture into the carrot mixture.
8. Fold in pecans.
9. Scoop out into cupcake papers.
10. Bake at 350 degree oven for ~20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

Cream Cheese Frosting with a Hint of Orange

16 ounces or 2 packages of Philly cream cheese
3/4 stick butter
5-7 cups sifted powdered sugar
2 tablespoons fresh squeezed orange juice

1. Bring cheese and butter to room temperature by letting it sit out for 1 or 2 hours.
2. Sift powdered sugar into a bowl or onto parchment.
3. Beat butter and cheese at medium speed until creamy.
4. Add half of the sugar and the orange juice. Beat until combined.
5. Gradually add remaining sugar (more if you have to) until you get to the consistency and sweetness you like.

Candied Orange Peel Nests

Why reinvent the wheel? Nic over at the Baking Sheet has already gone and posted a recipe for candied orange peel. I researched a handful of methods and I liked the sound of this one over the others.

I cut the recipe in half. The only other change I made was to cut peel of the orange with a vegetable peeler then cut it into strips before soaking over night. Other then that change, I basically followed the recipe in her post.


cutting the orange peel


orange peel strips


candied orange peel

Assembly
1. Pipe some frosting onto the cooled cupcakes.
2. Top off each frosted cupcake with some candied orange strips and a caramel egg.


caramel eggs