Here it is! My first Valentine's Day recipe post. I've been patiently waiting for so long to share this post! I've been most excited about it and thought it would be great to share this recipe around Valentines Day. Because it is pink! I made these for my daughter's birthday. She wanted everything pink! Looks-wise these are beyond perfect. Taste-wise, beyond perfect! I kid you not the buttercream on these tastes like strawberry ice cream. The strawberries in and of themselves give the cupcake a subtle pinkish-gray color. So if you're not into food coloring or have a red food dye allergy, you will get a subtle color there from the strawberries alone. I wanted mine just a bit more noticeably pink so I did add a few drops of red food coloring to both the cupcake and the frosting.
And, I just have to brag for a minute: how many parties have you been to where the kids lick the frosting off the cupcakes and leave the cupcake part? You've seen it- sticky frosting fingers and faces, crumbs and napkins and cupcakes everywhere. WELL, the kiddos not only licked the frosting off my cupcakes, but they actually eat the WHOLE cupcake too! HA! Some people brag about their kids eating tofu and red peppers, but me, here I am bragging that my kids eat all their cupcake. ha ha :)
Strawberry Cupcakes with Strawberry Buttercream Frosting
From Egg Free Bakery, adapted from "Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World" and Confections of Foodie Bride
3/4 cup buttermilk (or 1 cup milk mixed with 1 tsp apple cider vinegar, let stand 5 minutes)
1/4 cup strawberry puree**
1-1/4 cups flour
2 Tbsp cornstarch
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup canola oil
3/4 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
Red or pink food coloring, optional
Fresh strawberries for garnish, optional
**To make strawberry puree, you can use either fresh or frozen strawberries. If using fresh strawberries, wash, hull and slice enough strawberries until you have about 1-1/2 cups. Place in a saucepan and sprinkle with a couple tsp sugar. Let simmer, stirring as needed, until strawberries break down about 15-20 minutes. Remove from heat and press mixture through a fine mesh sieve over a bowl to remove seeds. Let the puree in the bowl cool before using. If using frozen strawberries, place 1-1/2 cups sliced unsweetened frozen strawberries in a saucepan and continue with instructions as described above for the fresh strawberries. After measuring strawberry puree for cupcakes, save the remainder! You will use it for the strawberry buttercream frosting.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin tin pan with baking cups. Sift together flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In another bowl, mix together buttermilk (or milk/vinegar mixture), strawberry puree, oil, sugar, vanilla and food coloring, if using. Whisk in together wet and dry ingredients until no large lumps remain being careful not to overmix. Fill lined muffin pan 2/3 full. Don't overfill. Bake 20-22 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Be careful not to overbake either. (I think the texture is better if the cupcakes are just done). Let cool 5-10 minutes in pan before removing cupcakes to wire rack to cool completely before frosting with strawberry buttercream frosting. Top with sprinkles or garnish with a fresh strawberry if desired. Store frosted cupcakes in an airtight container in the fridge until serving time. Yield: about 12 cupcakes
*Note: If you find you want more strawberry flavor, you can add more puree, just reduce buttermilk. I wouldn't add any more than 1/2 cup puree-- (that means you'd reduce the buttermilk to 1/2 cup, make sense?) The puree listed above makes just enough for 1/4 cup puree and some for the buttercream so if you do want to add more puree, up the strawberries to 2 or more cups. You can always use the extra to drizzle on pancakes or yogurt.
Strawberry Buttercream Frosting
1-1/2 cups salted butter, softened
4 to 4-1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2-3 tbsp strawberry puree
few drops red food coloring, optional
In the bowl of an electric stand mixer beat together butter until light and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes. Add powdered sugar and vanilla mixing 1-2 minutes. With mixer on low speed, add strawberry puree, adding 1 tbsp at a time until desired consistency and taste is achieved. You don't want to add too much otherwise it will be runny. Stir in food coloring if using. Frost cupcakes immediately. Store frosted cupcakes in the fridge.
*Sharing recipe on Allergy Free Wednesday
*Sharing recipe on Allergy Free Wednesday