Happy Halloween everyone! Here is a recipe that you can whip up in no time at all for all of your ghosts and goblins. These cupcakes are inspired by candy corn but do not taste like candy corn at all (except for the little pieces on top! ;))
So if you are not a fan of candy corn, you can still enjoy these cupcakes. Just go ahead and garnish them with orange and yellow sprinkles if you prefer. Now personally I love candy corn! I always get so excited when I spot the first bags of the season at the grocery store. No matter how hard I try to resist them I always end up picking up a bag or two. Instead of devouring an entire bag by myself, I decided to make these festive cupcakes!
These cupcakes are made from my favorite recipe for a classic white layer cake, only with a burst of coloring added. They always bake up super moist and tender.
Yield: 24 cupcakes
For the Cupcakes:
2 1/4 cups cake flour
1 cup whole milk, at room temperature
6 large egg whites (3/4 cup), at room temperature
2 teaspoons almond extract
1 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoons table salt
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened but still cool
orange and yellow food coloring
For the Buttercream Frosting:
20 tablespoons (2½ sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2½ cups Confectioners’ sugar
1/8 teaspoon table salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons heavy cream
orange and yellow food coloring
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin pan with paper liners.
In a 2-cup glass measure, combine milk, egg whites, and extracts and mix with fork until blended.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, on low speed combine cake flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add butter and continue beating at slow speed until mixture resembles moist crumbs, with no powdery streaks remaining.
Add all but 1/2 cup of milk mixture to crumbs and beat at medium speed for 1½ minutes. Add remaining 1/2 cup of milk mixture and beat 30 seconds more. Stop mixer and scrape sides of bowl. Return mixer to medium speed and beat 20 seconds longer.
Pour a scant cup of the cake mix into three separate mixing bowls. Mix in food colorings. Starting with the yellow batter, evenly distribute among muffin cups. Then distribute the orange batter evenly among the muffin cups right on top of the yellow batter, smoothing the top so you can’t see the yellow batter. Repeat with the white batter.
Bake 15 to 17 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer muffin pan to wire racks to cool completely before removing cupcakes. Cool completely prior to frosting.
To make buttercream frosting, in standing mixer fitted with whisk attachment, beat butter at medium-high speed until smooth, about 20 seconds. Add confectioners’ sugar and salt; beat at medium-low speed until most of the sugar is moistened, about 45 seconds. Scrape down bowl and beat at medium speed until mixture is fully combined, about 15 seconds; scrape bowl, add vanilla and heavy cream, and beat at medium speed until incorporated, about 10 seconds, then increase speed to medium-high and beat until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes, scraping down bowl once or twice.
To make three color swirls, divide frosting into three separate bowls. Color one bowl yellow and another orange, leaving one bowl white. Place each color in separate disposable decorators bags. Place the three filled disposable decorators bags into a large decorators decorating bag fitted with the 1M decorating tip and approximately 1/4″ above cupcake top at a 90° angle to cupcake surface, pipe a spiral of icing, beginning at the outer edge and working inward. Garnish with candy corn pieces.
Recipe Note: If you have forgotten to bring the milk and egg white mixture to room temperature, set the bottom of the glass measure containing it in a sink of hot water and stir until the mixture feels cool rather than cold, around 65 degrees.
Source: cupcakes and frosting adapted from Cook's Illustrated
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