The Vanilla Cupcake

Moist.  Fluffy.  And best of all, simple.

Nothing better then your basic vanilla cupcake.  Sure, some love a cupcake with all the bells and whistles and the textbook chocoholic may pass this one by, but find me one person that will actually take a bite and say "ewww".  If they're out there, I haven't met them yet.

The trick, of course, is not over-baking.  Don't count on the time specified in the recipe, count on your own watchful eye.  Just a few seconds too long will dry out these yummy treats.  Trust me, I lost my first batch this way (darn computer, distracts me every time).  No worries, they won't be wasted.  Cake Ball post...coming soon!

Vanilla Cupcakes
1 3/4 cup cake flour (not self-rising)
1 1/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into cubes
4 large eggs
1 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line cupcake pans with paper liners; set aside.
Combine both flours, sugar, baking powder and salt.  Mix on low speed until combined for about 3 minutes.  Add in cubed butter, mixing until just coated with flour.  Add eggs 1 at a time until combined.  Slowly add milk and vanilla to batter until completely mixed scraping down the bowl as you mix.  Scoop batter into baking cups filling about 2/3 full.  Bake until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 17 to 20 minutes.

Vanilla Buttercream
2 sticks unsalted butter (can substitute 1/2 cup shortening for 1 stick butter, I do when decorating)
1-2 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons milk
1 lb (approximately 4 cups) confectioners sugar
1 tablespoon meringue powder

Cream butter, add vanilla and milk.  Slowly add dry ingredients, mix until creamy. May need to increase sugar amount if stiffer consistency is desired.



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