Friday, August 8, 2008

Spicy Spice Cupcakes

Yes. It's time for Cupcake Hero again. Laurie over at Quirky Cupcake is still taking a break from hosting the Hero, so this month's guest hostesses are Rachel of Tangerine Tart and Teri of the 90/10 rule. And oh boy, they did pick a challenging theme. Jalapeno. Yes. Those green hot peppers.

Actually, this Cupcake Hero was a learning experience for me. It turns out that all along I'd been using Serrano peppers instead of jalapeno peppers when cooking. I just didn't know the difference. Now I know that Serrano peppers are skinnier and hotter and jalapeno peppers are fatter and still pretty hot.

This Cupcake Hero was hard because I kept coming up with different sweet tastes that go well with jalapenos, but couldn't come up with how to put them into a cupcake and make it taste great. I finally started thinking about Indian food and how some sweet curries have raisins and cinnamon along with the curry powder. That's when it occurred to me that a spice cake may be the way to go. And frankly I just love molasses.

I also decided to mince the jalapenos so that they're tiny little morsels in the finished cupcake. I felt sort of like I was being an Iron Chef at this point because I felt like I wanted to keep the integrity of the jalapenos rather than hide them as a single hot (spicy) element in the cupcake. I really think the jalapeno flavor comes out here. I seeded mine and cut out the ribs, but I think they'd be even better if the ribs were left in, but they were still seeded. Oh and the creamy frosting with it's twangs of buttermilk and molasses is the perfect complement to the Spicy Spice Cupcakes, but if it's too creamy for you add some more powdered sugar or chill it to thicken.

Spicy Spice Cupcakes
an original Shazam recipe

cupcake:
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup pumpkin butter
3/4 cup applesauce
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup olive oil
3 large eggs
2 Tbsp unsulfured molasses
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup dark raisins
1 jalapeno pepper finely minced

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare 24 muffin cups with paper liners.

Combine flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, allspice, and salt in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, combine pumpkin butter, applesauce, buttermilk, olive oil, eggs, molasses, raisins, and jalapeno. Stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Divide batter among muffin cups and bake for 20 minutes or until tops bounce back when gently pressed.

frosting:
8 oz cream cheese
4 Tbsp unsalted butter
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 Tbsp unsulfured molasses
1 Tbsp buttermilk

Blend cream cheese and butter together. Add powdered sugar, molasses and buttermilk. Whip until fluffy.

to assemble:
Once cupcakes have cooled completely, frost with frosting and keep in a cool, dry place.

10 comments:

Mrs. White said...

Oh my, I can't even imagine what I would do to combine cupcakes and jalapeno peppers. Like many of the desserts presented on Iron Chef, I'm very curious how this would taste. I do love spice cake, however...

Sara said...

boy, it's bad for my keyboard to read your blog when I'm hungry... I just drooled all over it.

Those cupcakes sound over the top amazing. I love spice cake.

glamah16 said...

You know you havr yo win this month? Right? Great thinking on a challenging theme.

CB said...

I do the same thing! Serrano=small, skinny. Jalapeno=big, fat. Good way to remember. LOL. Hot looking cupcake you got there. Now I really gotta put on my game face if I wanna win huh? :)
\Clara

Grace said...

i love both spice and spiciness--nice work! and even if the cupcake itself were to turn out badly, cream cheese frosting can make up for just about anything! :)

April said...

Great job on the cupcake! This one is a doozy for me!

Amanda said...

Yum yum yummy! Those look and sound fantastic!

Deborah said...

What an original idea for the ingredient! And your cupcake sounds surprisingly good.

Gretel said...

These cupcakes ARE good! I had some. Mmmmm

Mike of Mike's Table said...

This is really impressive! I can't imagine how they taste but I'm really curious to know. Great work on this one--this is very creative!