Quick Berry Cupcakes

Friday, March 6, 2009

Normally I prefer to make a cake or cupcake recipe from scratch (none of that cake box mix stuff), but I find myself increasingly dependent on such shortcuts since having two babies.

I wanted to make cupcakes for Andrew to take to work, to continue my experiment on what works/what doesn't for my cafe I will open...one day... (sigh)... and so felt like having a Berry Cupcake. Haven't really seen those much. The chocolate/vanilla/red velvet has been done, but sometimes I feel like something lighter and fruitier.

So came up with this recipe I thought worked really well, and I'm happy with the results:

Berry Cupcakes
1 box strawberry cakemix
3 eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 1/4 cup strawberry, apple or raspberry juice (or combination of those)
1 1/2 cans prepared classic white frosting
1/4 cup raspberry jam
the juice of half a lemon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees (325 degrees if using dark metal pans).

Line muffin tins with cupcake liners, and brush top of baking pan with vegetable oil to prevent any tops sticking to it if they overflow.

In a large mixing bowl, beat with handheld electric mixer (with beater attachments) the cakemix, eggs, vegetable oil and juice. [the juice is replacing the water ingredient as suggested on the cake preparation on the back of the box.] Fill the cupcake liners 2/3 of the way full and bake for 17 -20 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean.

Take out of tins and stand to cool completely (as applying frosting to even warm cupcakes will melt the frosting and cause it to goop all over the sides).

While cupcakes are cooling, combine the white frosting, raspberry jam and lemon juice in a large bowl and mix to combine. Careful not to over mix - a pretty presentation is if some white frosting runs through it and it's not totally and completely combined. If frosting gets too soft, refridgerate for 10 minutes before frosting the cupcakes. Frost the cupcakes generously and make decorative peaks at the top if desired. Garnish with a slice of strawberry or 1 whole raspberry.

Tip: If you're planning to transport these somewhere, then place on large cooking sheet and place a toothpick in every other cupcake, creating an elevated carpet on which plastic wrap or aluminum foil can rest. This way, you avoid getting the tops and frosting messed up when you cover. And refridgerate at least an hour before transporting, so as to harden the frosting and making it less likely to melt in the car or be disturbed by movement.

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