Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes

The night before Halloween, I decided to try to make Pumpkin Spice cupcakes using this recipe I found on TasteSpotting (my new favorite recipe site.) Make Me Hungry's blog has awesome photos of her food that definitely drew me in. I just had to try the recipe! They turned out surprisingly well since they were made from scratch. Everybody loved them! Yay! My chocolate spider webs definitely didn't turn out as pretty though. Gotta work on that step. But the cupcakes were super moist and had the perfect amount of spice. I must say though, baking from scratch takes a heck of a lot longer..

Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 stick butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 large egg, plus 2 egg whites
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 3/4 cup low-fat milk
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, cloves, and nutmeg in a large bowl. Set aside. In another bowl, whisk the pumpkin puree and milk. Set aside. Cream the butter in an electric mixer. Gradually beat in the sugar and mix on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, once at a time, and add the vanilla. Turn mixer to low and alternate the addition of the flour and pumpkin (start and end with flour. Example: add 1/3 of the flour mixture, then half the pumpkin mixture, half of the flour, remaining pumpkin, and rest of the flour mixture). Mix until just blended.

Using an ice cream scoop, fill cupcake pans lined with muffin cups. The batter should fill 2/3 the way up. Bake for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool completely on a cooling rack before icing.

Cream Cheese-Mascarpone Frosting

( I didn't add mascarpone, but I'll try it next time!)

  • 8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 8 oz mascarpone cheese, room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup powdered sugar

Cream the mascarpone, cream cheese, and vanilla in electric mixer on medium speed until light and well combined. Turn speed down to low and add the powdered sugar. Spread a generous amount over cupcakes.

:TIP: To make a chocolate spider web, melt 6 oz of chocolate in the microwave for 1 min or until melted well. With a piping bag, draw a pea-sized dot in the center of the cupcake, then 2 rings around it. With a toothpick, drag the tip through the chocolate from the center dot to the edge. It is best to do this immediately when frosting the cupcakes… if you let the frosting sit too long the chocolate will not smoothly spread and the frosting with have crystallized and become chunky.