Sunday, March 31, 2013

Raspberry Cupcakes

I have so much to be thankful for today. Easter for me is about new life, fresh starts, and gratitude. I spent the day celebrating with family and friends the amazing gift that Jesus gave of his life and by his resurrection.  I've been singing this song all day long.

For our family gathering today I wanted something fresh and new too. I instantly thought of raspberries. To me they taste like summer, and at this point I am so ready for warmth and sunshine.

I really LOVE the flavor of raspberries. I can eat a whole carton of fresh berries in a flash and frozen berries make excellent ice/flavoring in water or a punch. I have a bunch of berry canes that I can't wait to plant as soon as the thaw comes (courtesy of kind neighbors).

I topped these raspberry cupcakes with raspberry frosting a fresh raspberry with a white chocolate chip inserted into the opening. I mean I topped the ones that we hadn't already eaten as a "muffin." Face it, the difference between a muffin and cupcake is pretty much the frosting...

1 c butter, softened
1 1/4 c sugar
4 eggs
1 t vanilla extract
2 1/2 c flour, sifted
1/4 t salt
2 1/2 t baking powder
1/2 c milk (cow, nut, rice, etc)
1/2 - 2/3 c raspberry puree*

Line muffin tin with baking cups. Beat butter and sugar with mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Alternate adding the flour mixture and milk, mixing well after each addition. Mix in raspberry puree. Spoon batter into prepared pan. Bake 22-25 minutes at 350 degrees. Remove from pans and cool on racks. Makes 21-24 cupcakes

1/2 c shortening or softened butter (I used palm shortening)
1/4 c raspberry puree*
2 c confectioners' sugar, sifted
dash of salt
1/4 c white chocolate chips + 1 t shortening

In a microwave, melt chocolate chips with shortening. Mixing after every 30 seconds until just melted. With a mixer, cream together shortening and sugar and salt. Alternate adding in puree and white chocolate while mixing until smooth and creamy. Refrigerate slightly to stiffen frosting before pipping onto cupcakes or frosting with a knife or spatula. Frosting is light and fluffy, but will become very soft if left in the heat.

* Raspberry puree was made with 12-16 oz of fresh raspberries. I ran them through the blender and pushed the mixture through a mesh strainer to remove the seeds.

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