Friday, February 24, 2012

Bleeding Heart Cakes

Well it has been some time since I used my spike pan, so I decided to pull it out for another go round.  This particular recipe has a little bit more work to it than just regular cupcakes, but I think it is well worth it.

The batter comes together with a mix of blood orange juice and zest, ground pecans, cinnamon and orange liqueur.  The inside heart is a blood orange segment that is coated in a mix of cinnamon sugar and pecans.  On top is a dusting of confectioners sugar and piped lattice icing with the flavor of blood oranges and cinnamon.

I really do like the distinctive taste of blood oranges. These little cakes definitely give you a pop of that great flavor with the orange segment cooked inside. This recipe makes a little over 1 1/2 dozen.

Bleeding Heart Cakes
by flourtrader

13 blood orange segments, pith and membrane removed
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup ground pecans (I used a blender to grind mine)
1/4 cup sugar

To prepare your filling, line a baking sheet with waxed paper.  In a shallow bowl, mix together cinnamon, pecans and sugar.  Cut each segment in half, cutting the width.  Then roll each piece in the cinnamon mixture and place on the baking sheet.  Place in fridge while the rest is prepared.

Ingredients/ Cake batter
1/2 cup orange liqueur ( I used Grand Marnier)
1/2 cup blood orange juice
2 tbs blood orange zest
1/2 cup ground pecans
3/4 cup butter, room temp
3 eggs, whites and yolks separated
2 cups sugar
4 tsp baking powder
3 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare spike pans by greasing top edges of cavities and putting in cupcake liners, letting the spike poke through the center.

 In a medium size bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Stir in the ground nuts.  Set aside.  In another bowl, cream together the sugar, orange zest and butter.  Then beat in the egg yolks one by one.

In a small bowl stir together the orange liqueur and the orange juice.

Then fold in 1/3 of the sifted ingredients into the sugar mixture.  Mix in 1/2 of the orange liqueur and juice mixture.  Continue with the same mixing process, ending with the last third of the sifted ingredients.  Set aside.

In a small bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form.  Then fold the whites into the batter.  Using a scoop, fill each of the cupcake cavities with a heaping tablespoon of batter.  Then take the orange segments from the fridge and slide a piece onto the spike so it just touches the top of the batter.  Segment should be on its side rather than upright.  After all the segments are spiked, place another scoop of batter on top.  Cavity should be about 3/4 full.

Place pan in oven and bake for 12-18 minutes or until tester (poked outside of the orange segment in the center) comes out clean.  Mine took exactly 15 minutes.  Remove pan and let cool for 1 minute and then transfer to rack to finish cooling.

Ingredients/Lattice Icing
2-3 tbs blood orange juice
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tbs grated zest
1 cup powdered sugar (more for dusting)
3-4 drops of red food coloring
Stir together cinnamon and zest in a small bowl.  Sift in the confectioners sugar, then add 1 tbs orange juice and stir.  Add red food coloring and more orange juice until it reaches the desired consistency and color.  I used a squirt bottle to make the lattice, so my icing was not as thick as you would need if you piped it.

Once cupcakes are cool, dust with powdered sugar and frost, making a design on top of the cupcake with the icing.

             LAST YEAR: Boardwalk Cinnamon Rolls