Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Taking the Cake

About six months ago, I had never heard of Cupcake Wrappers. Now I'm a diehard fan. I just couldn't imagine a dessert table, cupcake stack or party without them. To think that years ago, we were all eating naked cupcakes! (You heard me!)

Anyway. Moonlight & Whimsy are currently stocking two types of cupcake wrapper - reusable and non-reusable alike, depending on your needs and tastes. I'd just unpacked my newest shipment from The Cupcake Wrapper Co. and it was good timing actually, as I'd only just bought my new Kuhn Rikon cupcake icing pen (Wheel & Barrow - $29.95) and was dying to try it out. I'd also been looking for a new vanilla cupcake recipe for awhile, so it was win/win!

There has been a spate of new Cupcake shops popping up all over Brisbane recently, mostly sporting the same tasteless cake with super-sickly-sweet frosting. This recipe that I stumbled across however, was recommended by a swag of cupcake-connoisseurs. Yes. Connoisseurs. The real gem here however is the buttercream frosting (honestly - this stuff should come with its own health warning)!!

Heart attack or not though, it is honestly the BEST frosting I have ever tasted, and so I was pretty chuffed that I could make something that could make grown men weak at the knees. (There were tears from my partner as I wrestled the bowl off him to wash up... REAL TEARS!)

It's serious melt-in-your-mouth stuff!

Above: Pink/White Polka Dot and Pink/White Stripe Cupcake Wrappers
Below: Green/White Stripe, Green/White Polka Dot Cupcake Wrappers

Vanilla Cupcakes
  • 2 3/4 cups plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 200g softened unsalted butter
  • 1 3/4 cups castor sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tbs vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk

Preheat oven to 170C. Line two 12-hole muffin trays with cupcake papers.

Sift together the flour and baking powder. In a separate bowl, cream the butter for 1-2 minutes.
Add caster sugar a third at a time, beating for 2 minutes after each addition. After the last addition, beat until the mixture is light and fluffy and the sugar has almost dissolved.
Add eggs one at a time, beating for 1 minute after each minute or until mixture is light and fluffy.

Add the vanilla extract and beat until combined.

Add a third of the flour to the creamed mixture and beat on low speed until combined. Add half of the milk and beat until combined. Repeat this process.

Add the remaining third of the flour and beat until thoroughly combined (don't over-beat or the mixture will toughen!)

Spoon mixture into cupcake papers, filling each about two-thirds. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Remove cupcakes from the trays immediately and cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes before frosting.

Buttercream Frosting (from Smitten Kitchen)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 26 tablespoons butter, softened (Yes! You heard me! Do it!)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Whisk egg whites and sugar together in a big metal bowl over a pot of simmering water. Whisk occasionally until you can’t feel the sugar granules when you rub the mixture between your fingers.

Transfer mixture into the mixer and whip until it turns white and about doubles in size. (Here’s a tip: when you transfer to the mixer, make sure you wipe the condensation off the bottom of the bowl so that no water gets into the egg whites. This can keep them from whipping up properly.)

Add the vanilla.

Finally, add the butter a stick at a time and keep whipping until it's thick and luscious. Yes - this can take up to 10 minutes! Be patient!

Above: Blue/White Polka Dot Cupcake Wrappers
Below: Going dotty with wrappers from the Cupcake Wrapper Co!

Enjoy and don't forget we're selling the reusable cupcake wrappers for an introductory price $13.95 for 12 at Moonlight and Whimsy,  but be quick! The offer won't last long!

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