Wow! I thought I had posted this right after Thanksgiving but I just realized it was a draft, not a post 😦
A friend of mine invited me for Thanksgiving Dinner and I offered to bring dessert – cupcakes of course! I wanted to try a new recipe from my Martha Stewart Cupcakes cookbook. To go with the autumn theme I decided upon the Brown Sugar Pound Cupcakes but instead of the maple glaze I made Caramel Buttercream. The recipe called for the cupcakes to bake at 325 for 25 minutes. After 18 minutes I checked on them and they were already starting to burn! I’m not sure if it’s the recipe or if it’s my oven. Could be a combination of both. I’ve been having trouble with my vanilla cupcakes cooking too quickly as well. Regardless, I managed to salvage most of the brown sugar cupcakes but I will definitely take them out much earlier next time.
It was not my day to cook because I had problems with my icing as well. I decided to melt some caramel and cream together to make the caramel sauce, which was fine. I think I didn’t whip my egg white mixture enough because when I added the caramel and butter it would not incorporate. It sort of looked like cottage cheese. I added a bunch of icing sugar until it because relatively smooth. Luckily the whole thing ended up tasting pretty good. I was nearly late for thanksgiving dinner but it all worked out in the end. Phew!!!
Brown Sugar Pound Cupcakes
3 cups sifted all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 1/4 cups packed light-brown sugar
4 large eggs, room temperature
3/4 cup buttermilk
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Make cupcakes as directed in Basic Cupcake How-To, using buttermilk for wet ingredient. Fill each cup 3/4 full, and bake for 25 minutes. 2. Set rack with cupcakes over a parchment-lined baking sheet. Spoon glaze over tops, and let stand until set. Serve glazed cupcakes immediately.
Caramel Buttercream Icing
Makes about 4 cups
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup heavy cream
12 ounces (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
4 large egg whites, room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1. Bring 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar and the water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Wash sides of pan with a wet pastry brush to prevent sugar crystals from forming. Cook, undisturbed, until caramel is dark amber. Remove from heat, and slowly add cream, stirring with a wooden spoon until smooth. Let cool.
2. Beat butter with a mixer on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl.
3. Place whites and remaining 1/2 cup sugar in a heatproof mixer bowl set over a pot of simmering water. Whisk until sugar dissolves and mixture registers 160 degrees on a candy thermometer.
4. Remove from heat, and attach bowl to a mixer. Whisk on medium speed for 5 minutes. Increase speed to medium-high, and whisk until stiff, glossy peaks form, about 6 minutes. Reduce speed to medium, and add beaten butter, cup at a time, whisking well after each addition. Whisk in vanilla.
5. Switch to paddle attachment. With mixer on low speed, add caramel, and beat until smooth, 3 to 5 minutes.