• Recipes Of The Week

    Banana Cupcakes with Vanilla Pastry Cream

    For the Banana Cupcakes:
    2¾ cups all-purpose flour
    1¼ teaspoons baking powder
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    ½ teaspoon salt
    ½ cup (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    ¼ cup vegetable shortening, at room temperature
    1¾ cups granulated sugar
    2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    2 eggs
    1½ cups mashed very ripe bananas (about 4 bananas)
    ½ cup buttermilk
    For the Vanilla Pastry Cream:
    3 cups half-and-half
    6 large egg yolks
    ½ cup granulated sugar
    3 tablespoons cornstarch
    ¼ teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line two 12-cup cupcake pans with paper liners.
    2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together into a large bowl and set aside.
    3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and shortening together on medium speed until creamy, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the sugar and vanilla and beat on medium speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the bowl, add the eggs, and beat until just combined. Scrape down the bowl again and add the bananas. Beat until just combined. Turn the mixer to low. Add the flour mixture, alternating with the buttermilk, in three additions, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Scrape down the bowl, then mix on low speed for a few more seconds.
    4. Fill the cupcake liners about three-quarters full. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through the baking time, until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Transfer the pans to a wire rack and let cool for 20 minutes. Remove the cupcakes from the pans and place them on the rack to cool completely.
    To Make the Vanilla Pastry Cream:
    1. Set a fine-mesh sieve over a medium bowl.
    2. In a medium saucepan, bring the half-and-half to a simmer and keep warm.
    3. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch, and salt together until the mixture is pale, about 1 minute. Whisk half of the warm half-and-half into the egg yolk mixture, then pour that mixture into the remaining half-and-half in the saucepan and cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until thickened, about 6 minutes. Remove from the heat and whisk in the vanilla. Strain the pastry cream through the sieve and press a piece of plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the cream to prevent a skin from forming. Put in the refrigerator for about 1 hour, or until chilled.

    Orange and Cream Cupcakes

    1 box(es) (18.25 oz) yellow cake mix, prepared as box directs, substituting orange juice for the water
    1 package(s) Bird’s Imported English Dessert Mix for Custard Style Pudding (see Note)
    1 tablespoon(s) grated orange peel
    12 orange sections,  each cut in half

    -Heat oven to 350°F. Line 24 regular-size (2 1/2-in. diam) muffin cups with paper or foil liners
    -Spoon cake batter into lined cups, filling each 2/3 full. Bake as box directs. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Using tip of a paring knife, cut a small hole in top of each cupcake.
    -Prepare custard as box directs, stir in grated peel and cool until warm. Spoon into a sturdy ziptop food bag, cut tip off one corner and pipe into holes in cupcakes (you'll have about 1/2 cup custard left.) Insert a half orange section into custard in each cupcake. Refrigerate until serving.

    Creamsicle Cupcakes

    1 1/2 stick(s) (3⁄4 cup) unsalted butter,  softened
    1 1/2 cup(s) sugar
    2 teaspoon(s) baking powder
    2 teaspoon(s) vanilla extract
    4 large eggs
    2 1/4 cup(s) all-purpose flour
    1 cup(s) milk
    1/2 cup(s) orange juice
    2 teaspoon(s) grated orange zest
    n/a n/a
    Creamsicle Frosting:
    1 1/2 cup(s) heavy (whipping) cream
    1/2 cup(s) confectioners’ sugar
    1 tablespoon(s) grated orange zest
    Liquid orange food color (optional)
    Garnish: thin strips orange zest

    -Heat oven to 350°F. Line 24 regular-size (2 1⁄2-in.-diameter) muffin cups with paper or foil liners.
    -Make Cupcakes: Beat butter, sugar, baking powder, vanilla, orange juice and zest in a large bowl with mixer on high 3 minutes or until fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each. On low speed, beat in flour in 3 additions alternately with milk in 2 additions, just until blended, scraping sides of bowl as needed. Spoon evenly in muffin cups.
    -Bake 22 to 25 minutes until a wooden pick inserted in center of cupcakes comes out clean and tops are golden. Cool in pans on a wire rack 5 minutes before removing from pans to rack to cool completely.
    Frosting: Beat ingredients in medium bowl on medium-high speed until soft peaks form when beaters are lifted. Tint with food color; beat just until blended. Frost and garnish cupcakes.

    Cotton Candy Cupcake Recipe That's Both Pretty & Sweet

    • 2 3/4 cups cake flour
    • 1 2/3 cups pink vanilla cotton candy sugar
    • 3/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1 tablespoon baking powder
    • 12 tablespoons (1½ sticks) softened unsalted butter, cut into ½ sticks
    • 4 large egg whites, plus 1 whole egg
    • 1 cup whole milk
    • 3 teaspoons vanilla
    • 3 cups confectioner’s sugar
    • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 teaspoon cotton candy flavoring
    • Food coloring
    • 1 tablespoon whipping cream
    1. Add the dry ingredients together in the bowl of a stand mixer and combine on a slow speed until well blended.
    2. Add the softened butter, one half stick at a time, allowing the butter to combine before adding the next. With the mixer set at slow, add one egg white at a time, followed by the whole egg, scraping down the sides and ensuring each egg white is completely incorporated before the next addition.
    3. In a small separate bowl, whisk to combine the milk and vanilla extract. Add the milk and vanilla mixture to bowl of the mixer in small portions, allowing the mixer to combine the liquid completely before continuing. Scrape down the sides of the bowl again, and continue to beat for an additional minute or two until the batter is fluffy. Preheat your oven to 350F.
    4. Fill your cupcake liners until they are 2/3 full. Bake for 16-18 minutes, or until a toothpickjust comes out clean, so as not to overbake. Set aside to cool.
    5. In a standing mixer, whisk together the sugar and softened butter on low speed. Once it becomes well blended, increase the speed to medium until the mixture becomes fluffy. Add vanilla, cotton candy flavoring, food coloring, and cream, and beat on medium until well incorporated – about 1 to 2 minutes. Garnish with pre-made cotton candy if so desired.

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