Sunday, March 10, 2013

Vanilla Cupcakes with Raspberry Mascarpone Icing

I love to make from-scratch cupcakes, but there are times when I can't justify spending a whole Sunday baking. So, I like to keep a box of cake mix in the cupboard, in case of emergency. You know, a cupcake emergency. And besides, people can't tell the difference if you top them with a really amazing homemade frosting.

I was inspired by these beautiful homemade cupcakes. If you're pressed for time, my cream-cheesy version below is the way to go.


Step 1: Buy and make Trader Joe's Vanilla Bean Cake Mix.

Step 2: Make this quick Raspberry Sauce:

  • 12 oz bag frozen berries defrosted
  • 1/8 - 1/4 cup sugar (better if it's tart)
  • 1/4 water
  • 1 tablespoon Framboise or Chambord liquor
  • Juice of half a lemon, or more if it's too sweet.

Place the package of raspberries, the granulated sugar, and 1/4 cup water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer for 4 minutes. Take it off the heat and stir in the raspberry liquor and the lemon juice. Pour in a jar and chill immediately. 

Note: This recipe will leave plenty of leftover raspberry sauce. It keeps well in the fridge and can be used to fancy-up anything from greek yogurt to ice cream to Paleo Pancakes to Sunday Yogurt Cake. 

Step 3: Make the Mascarpone Cream Cheese Icing:
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) cream cheese at room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar -- sifted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch of kosher salt
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) mascarpone cheese
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Fresh raspberries for decorating

In the large bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter, cream cheese, and powdered sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Beat in the mascarpone on very low speed until just combined. (Be careful; once you've added the mascarpone, excessive beating can make the frosting curdle.) Stir in the vanilla extract.  

Step 4: Add the Raspberry Sauce to the icing and decorate:

When the Raspberry Sauce is completely chilled (Warning! If it's warm, it will curdle the frosting) add the sauce to the bowl of icing. Add a little at a time until you get the pink color you want. 

And voila! Decorate cupcakes with a pastry bag and tip -- it's easier and prettier than any other method. If you don't have a pastry bag/tip, load all the icing into a freezer-size ziplock bag and cut off one corner. Instant cake decorating trick! Top each frosted cupcake with a fresh raspberry. Done and done. 

{Raspberry Sauce on a sunny countertop)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please note: If you are trying to comment from an iPhone or iPad, there are scripting issues and the comment will not be posted. Please try commenting from another browser or device. Thank you! :)