Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Applesauce Spice Cupcakes with Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting

Because I'm so excited to start cooking for my new smiley little guy, I've decided that I'm going to celebrate his monthly milestones by baking cupcakes. Then, when he hits the one-year mark, I'll really go to town making what I hope will be a show-stopper of a birthday cake.

The only downside is that Henry isn't able to enjoy his cupcakes and mommy and daddy "have" to eat them all. It's tough, but you'll do anything for your children, right? I can't say any of this parenting is helping my waistline, though. But after 10 months of throwing away gourmet brownies, I'm really enjoying biting into a cupcake and really truly enjoying it.

Applesauce Spice Cupcakes
from Martha Stewart's Cupcakes

Makes 18 standard cupcakes.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
4 large eggs, room temperature
1-1/2 cups unsweetened applesauce
1 cup pecans, toasted and chopped (optional)

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line standard sized muffin tins with paper liners. Whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.

2) With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, cream butter and both sugars together until pale and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until each if fully incorporated, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Reduce speed to low. Add applesauce and then flour mixture, beating until just combined after each. Stir in pecans by hand.

3) Divide batter evenly among cups, filling each three-quarters full. Bake, rotating tins halfway through, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Approximately 20 minutes. Transfer tins to wire racks to cool completely before removing cupcakes.

Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup packed light brown sugar

With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat ingredients together until smooth. Ice cooled cupcakes immediately or store in the refrigerator up to 3 days. Before using after refrigeration, bring frosting back to room temperature and beat with an electric mixer on low speed until smooth.

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