The first cupcake I decided to tackle was the request from my brother: something with strawberries. I knew I wanted to do a sponge cake, but I didn’t really like the cupcake specific recipes I saw. I decided to use a cake recipe from CakeBoss (not THE Cake Boss, deceiving, I know) and go from there. I cut the recipe in half because I’d rather mess up on 12 cupcakes instead of 24…I figure it’s only half as depressing.
1/2 cup whole milk
(I substituted for 1/4 cup evaporated milk + 1/4 cup water)
2 tbsp butter1 cup flour1 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
(based on Wilton’s recipe),
altered16oz frozen strawberries,
sliced and sweetened, thawed
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 healthy squirts lemon juice
3 tbsp corn starch
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and fill a cupcake tin with 12 paper liners.You can first start off by preparing the filling and frosting because you will want to have that ready in advance. I would like to say that you will have both extra of the filling and the icing because I am doubling the recipe that I actually did…which wasn’t enough. If you’re extra generous with the frosting though, you might break even on that.Combine all of the ingredients for the frosting in a mixing bowl and mix together. Cover the bowl and put that along with your beaters into the refrigerator for 30 minutes.Then for the filling drain the MOST, but not all of the liquid from the frozen strawberries and add to a measuring cup.
Add enough water to equal 1 1/4 cups. In a medium sauce pan, whisk the liquid, sugar, lemon juice, and corn starch together. I was baking at my parents and all of their small and medium saucepans have magically disappeared, so I settled for a frying pan. Continue stirring as it begins to boil and thicken.After it has cooled a bit, but not completely gel-ified, add the strawberries and the remaining juice and stir until completely mixed. It will be thin, which is fine. Put the strawberries through a colander, reserving the liquid to top the cupcakes. Transfer the filling from the colander to a regular bowl to save for later.For the cupcakes you will start off by beating the eggs for 4 minutes. The original recipe said don’t skimp, so I suggest just listening.
Next, add in the sugar and beat for an additional 4-5 minutes. I won’t lie, I didn’t notice a huge difference between the 2 minute mark and the 5 minute mark, aside from it being a bit bubbly. Since they turned out, I once again suggest just doing it. Add in the vanilla after that.Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl and then add to the egg mixture until just combined. Now, when I see “just combined” I always feel that using a mixer or a beater is going to overdo it. At this point I like to switch to a whisk.On low heat in a saucepan, combine butter and milk just until butter has melted, stirring as you go along.Whisk in the butter to the batter and it should be a little bubbly and will taste delicious. Divide the batter equally into each cup – 3 mini ice cream scoops (3 tbsp)will be perfect. Bake for about 15 minutes. I would check after 13 to be safe.
While those are baking this is a good time to finish the frosting. Beat on high for 5-7 minutes. I found that it splattered a bit, so be careful. You’ll probably feel like giving up, but don’t! Just when you are ready to throw in the towel, in a split second the mixture goes from slightly thin to fluffy and delicious. Beat for just a bit longer after that to make sure it is cohesive and not too lumpy.When the cupcakes are done you will be able to smell them and the edges will be just a smidge brown.This as the first time I had ever tried to use the cupcake corer, and I am not sure if it is a flawed design or operator error, but I couldn’t get it to pull out the center of the cupcake. It did come in handy to at least get me started on pulling out the centers and keeping the size consistent. Using a knife to cut the center out would be just as effective, I’m sure. Yes, there is one missing. Yum.