Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Black Pond Cupcakes

With the white around the black, this made me think of wintertime and black ice, hence the name of these cupcakes.

I was wanting to actually make a cupcake out of the traditional flavors of  cheesecake, which is berries and cream.  The cake part actually is includes of cream cheese and ground vanilla beans.  The topping is quartered berries tossed in a heated sugar sauce and around the pond is a cream cheese whipped icing.

It all comes together in a wonderful bite of fluffy cake, creamy icing and juicy berries!  I will be making these again.  I am so happy they turned out, because I was really worried about them being dense with the cream cheese in there.  I cannot wait to see the faces when I donate these!  This recipe makes about 1 1/2 dozen cupcakes.

Black Pond Cupcakes

by flourtrader

4 eggs
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp ground vanilla beans
3/4 cup plus 2 tbs vegetable oil
1/2 lb cream cheese
2 tbs baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups flour

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.  Grease top edge of 18 muffin cavities and line with cupcake papers.

Sift together flour, baking powder, salt and ground vanilla beans.  Set aside.  In another bowl, beat 4 eggs on high speed for 3 minutes.  Fill a third bowl with the sugar, oil and cream cheese, beat for about a minute.  Then beat in the eggs until blended.  Lastly, fold in the sifted ingredients.

Using an ice cream scoop or a large spoon, put batter into each cavity, filling about 3/4 full.  Place in oven and bake until tester comes out clean.  This should take about 20-25 minutes. Let cool in pans for 2 minutes and then place on rack to finish cooling.  Do not top until completely cool.

Ingredients/Fruit topping
by flourtrader

2 pints of blackberries*
2 tsp of cornstarch
1 tbs sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 tbs water
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla extract

Rinse and quarter the blackberries and place in a bowl.  In a small saucepan, mix together all other ingredients and place over medium high heat.  Stir as the mixture cooks and once it comes to a boil, remove pan from heat.  Toss berries in sauce and then drain in a colander.  Place about one tablespoon of berry mixture in the center of each cupcake, making sure you leave a border around the outside edge.

*You made need more, depending of how much topping you want on your cupcakes.

Ingredients/Whipped Cream Icing
adapted from All Recipes

1 eight oz package reduced fat cream cheese (room temperature)
1/2 cup of white sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
2 cups of heavy or regular whipping cream

Combine all ingredients, except the whipping cream, in a large bowl by using a regular or stand mixer.  While the mixer is still running, slowly add the cream.  Continue to whip until stiff peaks form.

Using a large tip and piping bag, pipe a border around the outside edge of cupcakes, encompassing the fruit topping.
                               **LAST YEAR:Key Lime Crumb Cake**