Charming Cupcakes

Cupcakes are everywhere these days and for good reason! These sweet treats are bite-sized, easily portable and flavor combinations are near limitless.

Specialty cupcake shops are popping up left and right – Sprinkles, Trophy Cupcakes, Cupcake Royale, Yellow Leaf – wherever you shop frequently, there are delicious treats to be had!

Cupcakes are definitely a party favorite. They’re the perfect treats to bring to any event because there’s a size for every occasion! My recipe for Red Velvet Cupcakes with Spiced Rum Cream Cheese Frosting is great for the adults. And quick and easy Shirley Temple Cupcakes are perfect for the kids to whip up.

Shirley Temple Cupcakes
My Shirley Temple Cupcakes!

Take a jumbo cupcake along in lieu of a cake and slice everyone a piece, or a platter full of one-bite minis that are just the right size for little hands to grab!

For a fun afternoon with friends, family or the kids, bake up a bunch of different flavoured cupcakes – try chocolate chip, red velvet, spiced vanilla – – put out a couple different frostings and LOTS of sprinkles, decorations and toppings (think cracker jacks, peppermint patties, crushed cookies, edible glitter!) and let everyone customize their own sweet treat.

You might even come up with that next great cupcake combo! -Kathy

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Spiced Rum Cream Cheese Frosting
The darling of cupcakes gets a rummy twist with spiced rum frosting. Grate whole nutmeg over the top for extra flavor.

Makes 28 cupcakes

2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 sticks (16 Tbsps) salted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 1/4 cups sour cream
1/4 cup milk
2 Tbsps red food coloring
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp rum extract

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/2 stick (4 Tbsps) salted butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 tsp rum extract
1 Tbsp dark, aged or spiced rum
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1 (16-ounce) package powdered or confectioners’ sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 28 standard muffin cups with paper liners and set aside.

To make the cupcakes: In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

In a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the softened butter and sugar together for about 4 to 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Add one egg at a time, beating each one in well. Then add the sour cream, milk, food coloring and both extracts.

On low speed, gradually beat in the flour mixture until just blended. Do not overmix. Divide the batter between paper-lined cups, filling each cup 2/3 full (about 1/3 cup of batter).

Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into cupcake center comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool.

Meanwhile, to make the frosting: With an electric mixer in a large bowl, beat the softened cream cheese and butter together until smooth. Then beat in extracts, rum and spices. On low speed, add the powdered sugar, a little at a time, beating until smooth.

Frost the cupcakes when they are completely cool. Keep frosted cupcakes refrigerated.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®-Liquid Kitchen™

Shirley Temple Cupcakes

Makes 24 cupcakes

1 box (18.25 oz) super-moist white cake mix
1 1/4 cups lemon-lime soda*
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 egg whites
1/4 cup chopped maraschino cherries (about 12 cherries)
1 container (12 oz) white frosting
Garnish: 36 maraschino cherries, halved

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 24 cupcake cups with paper liners and set aside.

Place the cake mix, soda, oil and egg whites in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds. Stop and scrape the sides of the bowl and then mix on medium speed for 2 minutes. Fold in the chopped cherries.

Fill each lined cupcake cup 3/4 full with batter. Place pans in oven on a lower rack. Bake for about 15 – 20 minutes. Cool completely before frosting.

Frost each cupcake and decorate each cupcake with 3 cherry halves.

Cook’s Note: This recipe uses a 10–12 oz jar of maraschino cherries.

* Such as 7-UP, Sprite or Sierra Mist.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®

Posted by Kathy Casey on March 1st, 2012  |  Comments Off on Charming Cupcakes |  Posted in Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, Foodie News, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes

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