Well, I found this fun cupcake thing, where they've got a themed ingredient and you build a cupcake around it. Well, the deadline was Dec. 31, and I didn't browse across it until Dec. 30, so there was no way that I was going to be able to get any done in time to enter their contest. But it seemed like such a fun idea. The theme was mint, and I had a bunch of leftover pepperMINT candy canes, so I thought I'd make peppermint vanilla cupcakes.
I used a recipe that a previous winner liked for vanilla cupcakes. But I tweaked it a bit to add a bit of peppermint flavor. That and I don't have all the tools & equipment that the recipe calls for. But here's what I did.
For the cupcake:
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 T baking powder
1/4 t, heaping, salt
1/2 cup salted butter
2 extra large eggs
1/2 c 2% milk
1 t double proof vanilla extract
1 t peppermint extract
preheat to 325, line cupcake pan with papers. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder & salt in a large bowl, mix with fork. Add butter, cut with pastry blender until it's large crumbs, well coated with flour mixture. measure milk, add eggs, vanilla & flavorings to the measuring cup & stir. Pour into four mixture & beat on med-low until ingredients are incorporated. Don't overbeat. Fill 12 cupcake papers till something that resembles 2/3 full. (The other recipe says this should make 15, but I only got 12 & they're nice sized.) Bake, rotating pan halfway through, for 17-20 min, remove to a cooling rack.
While those were cooling I made up some pudding, using the pie filling directions. Nothing fancy here, just stuff I had on hand. After all, it was 10:30pm! When the pudding was made I got out my melon baller & cut the tops out with the big side then hollowed things out a bit with the small side. Then I scooped a bit of that pudding into the holes & put the tops back on.
Next, I needed some frosting. So I made up a batch of buttercream & put some peppermint flavoring in it.
1/2 c crisco
1/2 c butter
1 t double proof vanilla
1 t peppermint flavoring
4 c (aprox 1 lb) powdered sugar
2 T milk
2 candy canes, crushed
Cream butter and shortening with electric mixer. Add vanilla & peppermint extracts. Gradually add sugar mixing well & scraping sides & bottom of the bowel regularly. Icing will look dry. Add milk & beat at high speed until light & fluffy. Crush peppermint sticks in flat-bottomed glass bowl with the bottom of a glass cup until it's pretty fine pieces. Add to the frosting & mix again. Frost the cupcakes.