Category Archives: TiniCaketails: Liquor-Infused Cupcakes

Nutella Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Hazelnut Crunch Icing

I decided to make these for my daughter’s birthday since she loves the combination of Nutella and peanut butter. I adultisized (yes, I made up that word) them a bit by adding a splash of Frangelico to the cupcake batter in place of a bit of the milk that the original recipe called for. Below the icing is a layer of crushed Ferrero Rocher chocolate hazelnut candy and I also mixed this in the icing, so you have a crunchy texture surprise when you take a bite.

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Nutella Cupcakes

  • 1 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 Tbsp dark chocolate cocoa powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 stick + 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk – If using Frangelico, decrease amount of milk by 2 tablespoons and replace with Frangelico
  • 2 Tpsp Frangelico (optional)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 cup Nutella or other chocolate hazelnut spread

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

  1.  In a small bowl combine the flour, salt, baking powder and cocoa powder.
  2. In a large bowl, using an electric hand mixer or stand mixer, cream the sugar and butter. Mix until light and fluffy.
  3. Add the Nutella and mix until well combined.
  4. Mix in one egg at a time until combined.
  5. In a measuring cup mix the milk, vanilla, and the Frangelico; if you are using it. Remember to decrease the milk by 2 tablespoons and replacing that with 2 tablespoons of the Frangelico.
  6. To the large bowl, with the mixer on low, add in half the dry flour mix, combine. Add half the milk mix, combine. Add the remainder of the dry mix and finally the remainder of the milk. Mix well until the batter is smooth and creamy and a light chocolate color.
  7. Place liners in cupcake pan and fill 3/4 full with batter.
  8. Bake in oven for about 15 minutes. Check for doneness with a toothpick. This should come out with a tiny bit of cupcake on it for a moist cake.
  9. Remove to rack to cool.
Hazelnut Crunch Topping
  • 12 Ferrero Rocher Chocolate Hazelnut Candies, unwrapped
  1. Place all of the hazelnut candies into a food processor and process on pulse about five times. 
  2. Place in a bowl and set aside.
  3. When cupcakes are cool, smear the top of the cupcake with some of the crushed hazelnut candy. You’ll have some left to mix in the icing.
P1100729 P1100730In a small bowl combine the flour, salt, baking powder and cocoa powder.
P1100732In a large bowl, using an electric hand mixer or stand mixer, cream the sugar and butter. Mix until light and fluffy.
P1100753
Add the Nutella and mix until well combined.
P1100735
Mix in one egg at a time until combined.
P1100733In a measuring cup mix the milk, vanilla, and the Frangelico; if you are using it. Remember to decrease the milk by 2 tablespoons and replacing that with 2 tablespoons of the Frangelico.
P1100739To the large bowl, with the mixer on low, add in half the dry flour mix, combine. Add half the milk mix, combine. Add the remainder of the dry mix and finally the remainder of the milk. Mix well until the batter is smooth and creamy and a light chocolate color.
P1100731 P1100742 P1100745Place liners in cupcake pan and fill 3/4 full with batter.
Bake in oven for about 15 minutes. Check for doneness with a toothpick. This should come out with a tiny bit of cupcake on it for a moist cake.
Remove to rack to cool.
P1100747 P1100748Place all of the hazelnut candies into a food processor and process on pulse about five times.
P1100749
Place in a bowl and set aside.
P1100752When cupcakes are cool, smear the top of the cupcake with some of the crushed hazelnut candy. You’ll have some left to mix in the icing.

Peanut Butter Buttercream Icing

  • 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 cups confectioners sugar
  • 4 Tbsp milk
  1.  In a large bowl, using stand or an electric hand mixer, cream the butter and peanut butter until well combined.
  2. Slowly add confectioners sugar until well combined.
  3. Add the milk until well combined. The frosting should be creamy, smooth and light in color.
  4. Using a spatula, gently stir in the remaining crushed, hazelnut candy.
  5. Using a pastry bag and decorating tip (I used a closed star tip) make a circle of icing around the edge of cake.
  6. Next, using another pastry bag with a round tip, fill with additional Nutella and put a dollop in the center of the icing.
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Banana Frangelico Cupcakes with Nutella Banana Liqueur Icing

It’s been  a while, and my lovely collection of cupcake liners were crying out in loneliness. So, with that said, I decided to finish off the jar of Nutella, sorry kids, and bake today.

This is a banana cupcake to which I added a few tablespoons of Frangelico. For those of you who do not know, Frangelico is an Italian liqueur made from Hazelnuts. It is quite delicious. Now, of course, you can omit this.  This also holds true for the icing. You can, by all means, omit the banana liqueur in that, but I would replace it with milk or cream.  I just happen to like it and the little kick it gives.

This recipe makes about 18 cupcakes.

Banana Frangelico Cupcakes

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups of sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup, mashed, ripe bananas
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3 to 4 Tbsp. of Frangelico Liqueur

Line a muffin pan with cupcake liners.

Preheat oven to 350°.Mash the bananas.

Aren’t these cute?

In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add the eggs, vanilla, bananas and buttermilk. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; add to banana mixture. Mix in Frangelico.

I use this dry buttermilk. It’s great. I always have it on hand.

Fill 18 paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Once again, I used the handy ice-cream scooper.

Put into the oven and cook for about 22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

No peeking! ( I peeked)

When done, remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.

See? I used all the Nutella.

Nutella Banana Liqueur Icing

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup Nutella
  • 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 pounds confectioners’ sugar, sifted (one bag)
  • 4 Tbsp. milk, Half and Half or heavy cream
  • pinch of kosher salt
  • 2 Tbsp. banana liqueur

In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and Nutella until well combined. Slowly add in confectioner’s sugar, and continue creaming until well blended.

Add salt, vanilla, and 4 tablespoons of heavy cream or milk. Blend until creamy and moist.

Add about 3 Tbsp. of banana liqueur. If you omit this, use the same amount of cream or milk instead.

Fill a piping bag with frosting and decorate cupcakes, as desired. I used chopped hazelnuts and a banana chip for a garnish.

Dog approved…

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Margarita Cupcakes with Tequila-Lime Buttercream Frosting

Being a lover of margaritas, I thought what would be almost as good as that intoxicating beverage, but a cupcake.

The frosting contains tequila as do the top of the cupcakes. But of course if you’d rather not add it, that is fine too.  But we will make them here using it.  After all, that’s the heart of the margarita.

For the cupcakes:

  • 2 sticks of room-temperature, unsalted butter
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs, room temp. and 1 large egg white
  • 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 2 3/4 cups flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 3/4 cups of whole milk PLUS 2 Tbsp.
  • Grated peel of 4 limes, PLUS 1/4 cup of lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extact
  • tequila for brushing tops of cupcakes

Preheat oven to 350°. Line 24 cupcake pans with baking liners.

Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and the sugar until creamy.  Gradually beat in the eggs, egg white and oil. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix again.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

In a measuring cup stir together the milk, TWO tablespoons of the lime juice and the vanilla.  With mixer on low speed, add one-third of the wet mixture, alternating with one-third of the dry mixture, ending with the dry mixture. Mix in HALF of the grated lime peel.

Fill the baking cups about 3/4 of the way full. Bake in oven for about 22 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Remove from oven, transfer to cooling racks. Brush tops with tequila.

For the frosting:

  • 1 stick room-temperature, unsalted butter
  • 2 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. gold tequila
  • 1 drop green food coloring
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 Tbsp. remaining lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • remaining lime peel

Before I begin, I must say I wound up making a second batch of frosting. I wouldn’t recommend trying to double it at once, since there is so much sugar. I can only see a disaster coming out of that.  I pipe mine on, so it goes quicker. Spreading it on, I think one batch would be sufficient.

Using the mixer, beat the butter until creamy. Beat in one cup of the sugar until creamy.  Beat in the tequila, the lime juice, vanilla, salt, lime peel and food coloring until smooth and creamy. At first this looks awful. Adding and acid to butter makes it pretty lumpy and goopy and unappealing. Just continue beating and scaping until it’s creamy. It will happen.

Add the remaining confectioners’ sugar one-third at a time, until just soft enough to spread.

Add to piping bag or spread with a knife on the cupcakes. Decorate as desired.

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Bananas Foster Cupcakes

A friend of mine inspired me to make these. She posted a picture of her son eating the delicious concoction and right then and there, I knew I had to make these.

After much pondering of how to go about this and comparing other recipes, I finally came up with this one.

I made a banana cupcake, in which I added a few tablespoons of rum. I wanted a filling, so I made the classic Brennan’s Bananas Foster, but I only added two bananas and then pureed it in a food processor, to get it thick enough for a filling. For the icing, I decided on a Vanilla Cream Cheese. I’m not a fan of super-sweet icing, so if you like it really sweet, up the sugar content on it. Finally, I drizzled some of the remaining filling over top for an additional kick and nice presentation.

I hope you enjoy.

Banana Rum Cupcake

adapted from an allrecipes.com recipe

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup mashed ripe bananas (2 large did it for me)
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons of rum (I used 3)

In a large mixing bowl, cream shortening and sugar. Add the eggs, vanilla, bananas and buttermilk. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; add to banana mixture. Mix in rum.

Fill 18 paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Once again, I used the handy ice-cream scooper.

In a preheated 350° oven, bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Cool on a wire rack and prepare filling.

Classic Bananas Foster Filling

adapted from Brennan’s Classic Bananas Foster recipe

  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup banana liqueur
  • 2 bananas, sliced in rounds
  • 1/4 cup rum

Combine the butter, sugar, and cinnamon in a flambé pan or skillet.

Place the pan over low heat either on an alcohol burner or on top of the stove, and cook, stirring, until the sugar dissolves.

Stir in the banana liqueur, then place the bananas in the pan.

When the bananas soften and begin to brown, carefully add the rum.

Continue to cook the sauce until the rum is hot, using a long match or something similar, carefully ignite the rum.

When flame subsides, let cool and place in a food processor or blender. Puree until smooth. Place into refrigerator until cooled and slightly more thickened.

I put the goo, as I call it, into one of those ketchup/mustard containers. It worked well to squirt it into the cupcakes.

Once cupcakes have cooled, take a large piping tip and push it down into the center of each cupcake, creating a well.

When the filling is cooled and thickened, squirt the filling, going from the bottom and pulling up to the top of the cupcake, into the hole.

Now you can prepare the icing.

Vanilla Cream Cheese Icing

  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 to 3 cups of confectioners sugar (use as much as your taste for sweetness can handle)
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons half & half

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and cream cheese until nice and fluffy. Add the vanilla. Beat again.

Slowly add the sugar into the bowl, about a 1/2 cup at a time, beating after each addition. Continue to beat until a desired consistency is reached.

Add the half & half if it’s too thick.

Place into a piping bag and decorate cupcake as desired.

Squirt additional filling on the top of the icing.

Now, you may eat.

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Orange Creamsicle Cupcakes with Orange Liqueur

First off, let me say, “Oh my goodness!” These came out incredibly delicious. So delicately sweet with the flavors of orange and vanilla. Gets me in the mood for summer, waiting for the ice cream truck to drive by and get one of my favorite treats, an Orange Creamsicle.

My version I’m posting is a grown-up recipe. I spiked the cake with some Triple Sec. But really, it’s not overpowering. Of course, you can leave it out and it won’t affect the recipe at all. I just tossed in about a tablespoon at the end. Everything else stayed the same.

So, here you have it. Orange Creamsicle TiniCaketail.

Vanilla Cupcake with Orange Zest and Orange Liqueur

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2/3 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • Zest of one medium orange
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4  cup milk
  • 1 to 2 Tbsp orange flavored liqueur. Such as Triple Sec or Curaçao (optional)

Preheat oven to 350° F (177 C). Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.

In the bowl of electric mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

Add eggs, one at a time, blending well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla and the orange zest. Also add the orange liqueur at this time if using.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.

With the mixer on low-speed, alternately add the milk and the flour in three additions. Start with the milk and end with the flour. So milk, flour, milk, flour, milk, flour. Scrape down the sides of bowl as needed.

Evenly fill each muffin cup with batter. I use an ice-cream scoop filled to the top. Works like a charm.

Bake for 17 to 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove and place on wire rack to cool.

In the meantime, prepare the frosting.

Creamsicle Icing

  • 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp orange extract
  • 3/4 tsp vanilla
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • food coloring, red and yellow
  • Nonpareils

In the bowl of a mixer, using paddle attachment (if you have one, if not use what you have), combine cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, and both extracts. Beat on medium-high speed for about 2 minutes.

Transfer to a small bowl and set aside. Wash bowl.

In the cleaned bowl, add the heavy cream. Use a whisk attachment for this step. Whisk, starting on low, for about 30 seconds or until little bubbles begin to form.

Increase speed to medium, beat an additional 30 seconds until the beater leaves a trail.

Increase speed to high, until stiff peaks form. Do not over beat, unless you want butter.

Add the cream cheese mixture to the bowl and beat until combined and light and fluffy.

Add 2 parts red food color and 3 parts yellow to make orange. Stir thoroughly to combine. (This part is optional. It only makes it orange)

Fill a decorating bag fitting with a tip and swirl cupcakes to create an ice cream look.

Sprinkle with white nonpareils, if desired. Or just decorate as you wish. A candy orange wedge would be cute. Even a white chocolate “popsicle stick” would be really fun. Maybe I’ll attempt that another time. : )

Enjoy!

Tasted good.

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Dark Chocolate Valentine’s Cupcakes with Chambord Ganache

In honor of Valentine’s Day, I thought I’d make a special cupcake with one of those favorite V Day treats, a dark chocolate-covered strawberry.

Dark Chocolate Cupcakes

makes 12 cupcakes

  • 8 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cut up into 4 pieces
  • 1/4 cup of Hershey’s Special Dark Chocolate Chips
  • 1/2 Dutch process cocoa
  • 3/4 all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup sour cream

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin pan with cupcake liners.

Combine the butter, chocolate and cocoa in a heatproof bowl and set it over a pan with barely simmering water. Stir ingredients until smooth and combined. Remove from heat and set aside until just cool enough to touch.

In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt with a whisk.

Whisk eggs in a medium bowl until mixed. Add cooled chocolate mixture and whisk to combine. Sift about one-third of the flour mixture in and whisk until combined. Stir in sour cream. Sift remaining flour mixture in and whisk until thoroughly combined.

Using an ice cream scoop, divide mixture evenly among muffin pan cups. Bake about 20 minutes.

Let cool about 30 minutes before frosting.

Chambord-Spiked Chocolate Ganache Frosting

  • 12 ounce bag of Hershey’s Special Dark Chocolate Chips
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 8 Tbsp. butter
  • 1/4 cup of Chambord

In a food processor, process chips until very fine.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, bring cream to just a soft boil. Bubbles will just begin to form around edge of pan. Remove from heat.

Add cream through the feeding tube of processor and process for about 10 seconds, or until smooth. Pulse in the butter until combined. Add the Chambord with motor running for a few more seconds to combine.

Strain and let sit in refrigerator, covered in plastic wrap for several hours, until hard enough to frost with. Mine took about three hours for piping.

Using a piping bag and tip, pipe icing onto cooled cupcakes and top with a chocolate coverered strawberry.

To make the straweberries, I simply melted chips in the microwave until almost melted. Stir to finish the melting. Dip in a strawberry and lay on a a wire rack and let cool in refrigerator.

Cupcakes adapted from America’s Test Kitchen

Ganache adapted from serveral sources.

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