Baking with Bangs – Strawberry Cupcakes with Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting

This week has been an interesting one here at Farmgirl Gourmet Headquarters.  Monday AM the Hubs left for a week long business trip and then that same day a friend needed to leave town for a family emergency and asked if her 6 year old daughter could stay with me and the kids.  It’s been 4 years since I’ve had a 6 year old around the house, so it took a bit of adjusting, but we hit the ground running and it’s been really fun!

“Bangs” doesn’t have school on Wednesday’s so I asked her what she wanted to do.  Her response “make cupcakes”.  Ok, she was speaking my language.  So I asked what kind.  She said “strawberry with strawberry frosting”.  This kid is on to something here, because that sounds awesome.  So after a bit of internet searching we were set and ready to rock and roll.

First we pureed the strawberries for the cupcakes and the frosting.  There was about 1 1/3 cups of strawberries.  Maybe a couple more because we were feeling like some serious strawberry goodness.

Bangs whisked together the flour, salt and baking powder in a medium bowl.

Then she mixed together milk, vanilla and 2/3 cup of the strawberry puree.

Give it a good stir and then we set this bowl aside with the flour mixture.

In the bowl of the stand mixer we added 1 stick of butter and creamed it until light and fluffy and then added 1 cup of sugar and again creamed.

Into the butter and sugar we added 1 whole egg and 2 egg whites and mixed well to combine.

Then in goes half of the flour mixture.

Check out the cool bowls.  They are the “Confetti” line of bowls from Zak Designs.  Super cute, lightweight and durable.  I think thats the Trifecta of Kitchen Greatness!

Add the entire strawberry mixture and mix to combine.  Add the remaining flour mixture and mix just until combined.  Don’t go crazy here, you don’t want to develop the gluten in the flour.

Specks of strawberry = gorgeous!

Using a hinged ice cream scoop, fill the muffin cups.

Bake at 350 for 22-25 minutes.  Perfect!  Light, airy strawberry delicousness.  Time to make the frosting.

Measuring powdered sugar can be tricky at times, especially if you’re looking for perfection, so we started by using a kitchen scale.  We put the bowl on top before turning it on so that it would register at zero even with the weight of the bowl.  Then we added 1.4 pounds of powdered sugar.

In the stand mixer again we beat 1 stick of butter until creamy.  Then added an 8 oz package of room temperature cream cheese and beat until incorporated.  Then we mixed in 1/2 cup of the strawberry puree.

Slowly we added the powdered sugar to the butter and strawberry mixture.  Mix thoroughly and then refrigerate until the cupcakes are cooled completely.  Using a pastry bag or a pastry knife, frost the cupcakes.  We all agreed that the frosting was delectable, so don’t skimp.  Go crazy!

Strawberry Cupcakes with Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting
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Cupcake Ingredients
1/3 cup strawberry puree
1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 stick of unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 large egg, room temperature
2 large egg whites, room temperature

Directions
1
Preheat oven to 350.  Line 12-cup muffin tin with liners and set aside.
2 Add strawberries to the bowl of a food processor (include the strawberries from the frosting if using).  Puree until smooth.  Measure out 1/3 cup and set aside.
3 In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt and set aside.
4 In a small bowl, mix together the milk, vanilla and 1/3 cup strawberry puree.  Set aside
5 In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the butter and cream on medium-high until light and fluffy.  Add the sugar and beat until combined.  Turn down the mixer speed and add the egg and egg whites slowly.  Beat until just combined.
6 With the mixer on low, add half of the flour mixture to the butter mixture.  Mix until just incorporated.  Add the milk and strawberry mixture and mix until just blended.  Scrape down the sides and slowly add the remaining flour.  Mix just until incorporated.
7 Divide evenly among the lined muffin cups.  Bake for 22-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.  Cool completely before icing.

Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting


Ingredients
3 tablespoons strawberry puree from above (about 1/2 cup whole strawberries)
1 stick of unsalted butter, room temperature to slightly cold
1 8 oz package of cream cheese, room temperature to slightly cold
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
22 ounces of confectioners sugar (about 1.4 pounds)

Directions
1 In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter until light and fluffy.  Add the cream cheese and beat on medium until light and fluffy.  Reduce the speed and slowly add the confectioners sugar.  Beat until well combined.  Add the vanilla and 3 tablespoons of strawberry puree.  Mix until just blended.  Place in the refrigerator until you are ready to frost the cupcakes.

Note: I didn’t read the directions well when I made the frosting and added 1/2 cup of puree to the butter/sugar mixture.  I ended up adding 2 cups more powdered sugar to make the frosting thick enough to pipe.  I will say that the “oops” made some pretty amazing frosting.  I could eat it by itself!  


Note 2: Recipes were adapted from Martha Stewart.

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