Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Dial C For Cupcake

Pear and Cinnamon Cupcakes

Sometimes I wonder why I never named my blog after cupcakes, after all I'm crazy about them and lately they are all I've been making. I never make cupcakes for myself anymore, there’s no need to when I make enough for others. I’ve unwittingly become the cupcake request line, and this entire “dial-a-cupcake” affair started with these Happy Birthday Cupcakes I made earlier this year. The cupcake hotline escalated not long after that and a trillion cupcakes later here I am.

* * * * *

It was a friend’s son’s eighth birthday party and I made Billy’s Vanilla-Vanilla and Chockylit's Devil's Food Cupcakes for the kiddies to munch on. Mum requested there be no icing on the cakes as that she didn’t want sugar-crazed children going berserk in her house. But being the naughty Aunt that I was, I ignored this request and made icing anyway, but placed only kiddie-sized dollops on each cake. The cake-stack pictured below was taken before temptation got the better of me. However, eight broken plates later this did not matter, the cupcakes were a smashing hit! What's a party without some broken crockery anyway? In some cultures it wouldn't be a party without broken plates. However, I digress. Back to the cupcakes.

Patty Cake Stack

So after the vanilla-vanilla and choc cupcakes, there was the request for cinnamon cupcakes, and then there were the Short Black Cupcakes made to keep G awake during his long stints out in the cold. Just call me the Cupcake Santa.
The latest issue of Donna Hay Magazine contains a feature on Cupcake Couture, I adapted these Pear and Cinnamon Cupcakes from a recipe in it for Apple Pie Cupcakes. They turned out beautifully and I do hate to boast but, they really did. The cake is quite thick and moist and not overly sweet. Use Beurre Bosc or Peckham Pears as that they are in season right now and are ideal for baking. Also cinnamon is a great compliment for pears and for these cupcakes their union bode well . Here is the recipe.

Pear and Cinnamon Cupcakes
(makes 24 medium cupcakes)

Pear and Cinnamon Cupcakes

250g unsalted butter, softened
1¼ cup golden caster sugar
4 eggs
3 Beurre Bosc pears, peeled, cored and grated
2 cups plain all-purpose flour
2¼ tsp baking powder
1 Tbsp ground cinnamon
¾ cup buttermilk

Caramelised Pears
25g butter
¼ cup golden caster sugar
1 Bosc pear, peeled, halved, cored, and thinly sliced

To make the caramelised pears, melt the butter and caster sugar in a saucepan over low-medium heat. Add the sliced pears and cook for 5-8 minutes until caramelised. Remove the apples from the pan and allow to cool completely.

Preheat the oven to 180˚C. Place the butter and sugar in a bowl and beat until light and creamy. Add the eggs one at a time and beat well. Sift over flour, baking powder and cinnamon and beat until combined. Fold through the milk and then slowly fold through the grated pears. Spoon the mixture into a muffin tray lined with paper cases. Top with a slice or two of caramelised pears and bake for 20-25 minutes. Cool on wire racks.
Top with a dollop of whipped cream and a dusting of cinnamon sugar.

Pear and Cinnamon Cupcakes

waiting to be topped with caramelised pears...


lobstersquad said...

I´m awed. Everytime I make cupcakes, they come out tasting pretty good, but the look is somewhat squashed and irregular. Yours are sooo pretty!

Anonymous said...

i made chockylit's devils cupcake too! yes it was very sweet, luckily i reduced the sugar

Anonymous said...

Cupcakes are so popular right now, and yours are so gorgeous! I'm glad I found another baking blog!

Jen said...

Lobstersquad- Thanks so much, it's only after a lot of practice that they've turned out quite well : )

Swee- yes I too reduce the sugar and add a bit more cocoa so they don't turn our too sweet.

Anita- thank you : ) You're right cupcakes are the craze right now. I just love them.

Su-Yin -D├ęcorateur said...

hey jen...great photos! looks delicious!
I'm a fan of cupcakes myself! maybe not too much of a fan of eating them; jsut baking and looking at them! haha I feed them to others who are happy to chow them down for me. It's so strange how I bake desserts often but don't have a sweet tooth myself.

Jen said...

Syin- thanks heaps. I think I may have to consider lowering my cupcake intake. I have a sweet tooth, so it's hard : ) but is not good for the waistline!

Sara said...

I agree - those are perfect cupcakes! Your pictures are wonderful.

Anonymous said...

Hi JenJen, i love your site! I will be coming back here to check out all of your cupcake recipes. I also visited the link for your first birthday cupcake and the colours just consumed me. I love your cupcakes!!!

Btw, thanks for visiting my site and for leaving lovely comments. With regards to the camera, click on my photoblog and the camera details are on it. Cheers!

Jen said...

Sara- Thanks so much, im glad you liked the photos.

Mae- Im so glad you stopped by. Thanks, ill definitely be checking out your photoblog to see all your wonderful pics and to get the info.

Anonymous said...

hi all. I've always loved making patty cakes and have left my cupcake coture issue of donna hay in england. can anyone email me the basic frosting that she uses. it looks so much yummier than what i usually do!! thanks!!! humphreysc002@hotmail.com