Monday, August 20, 2012

Almond Cupcakes with Cherry Buttercream Frosting

When I created the menu for Little Devil's Asian-inspired graduation party, I tossed around the idea of cupcakes using truly Asian ingredients.  I toyed with the idea of everything from green tea to sake to Japanese plum wine.  I thought those flavors might be a little too out there for some of the guests, so I settled on something a little more mainstream.  Almond Cupcakes with a Cherry Buttercream Frosting.  They had the gorgeous look of a delicate Cherry Blossom that I was going for, and the addition of coconut milk gave an exotic flavor as well as creating a moist, delicious cupcake.
My pastry bag and tip exploded right before the party.
So I did things the old-fashioned way and used a spatula.
Not my prettiest cupcakes, but they tasted wonderful!
(Please observe the cake stand I made out of an old
Chinese Checkers game board!)

Almond Cupcakes
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 cup sweetened coconut milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon almond extract

Cherry Buttercream Frosting1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup milk
4 cups powdered sugar
marachino cherry juice
marachino cherries for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Line muffin pan with cupcake liners.  In a large bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  In a separate bowl, combine oil, coconut milk, vanilla and almond extract.  Add sugar and mix until well incorporated.  Add dry ingredients until mixed.  Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full.  Bake for 20-22 minutes or until golden brown and a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean.  Transfer to a cooling rack and allow to cool completely.  Makes 12 cupcakes.

For the frosting:

Beat together butter and powdered sugar.  Add desired amount of cherry juice for color and flavor.  Add milk until frosting is desired consistency.  Frost cupcakes and garnish with marachino cherries.

Prep Time:  Approximately 20 minutes     Cook Time:  Approximately 22 minutes

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