Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Valentine's Day cupcakes

Some time ago I ran across a recipe, or maybe just a mention of Nutella-filled banana cupcakes. I thouthg it sounded like pretty much the best kind of cupcake anyone could ever create, and I've been wanting to make them ever since.

I decided our Valentine's Day celebration at work would be the perfect opportunity.

I could find the original recipe that inspired the idea, but I found this one instead.

I tweaked it a bit, and my recipe looked something like this:


Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Line muffin pan with paper liners

2 ½ cups all purpose flour (I used a gluten-free flour blend from Williams Sonoma)
2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon xantham gum
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup apple sauce
4 eggs
4 overly ripe mashed bananas
2 teaspoons vanilla

In a mixer, mix together sugar, oil and eggs until smooth. Add banana and vanilla, beating well.
Add flour, baking soda, xantham gum and salt. Mix well

Scoop batter into prepared pan, filling muffin cups about half full. Spoon a small dollop of Nutella into each cupcake. Press the dollop into the batter, bringing some batter over the top to cover the Nutella glob.

Bake in preheated oven for 24-28 minutes or until tops of cupcakes spring back when lightly touched. Let cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely on rack.


The remainder of your jar of Nutealla (I think there was about half left after filling the cupcakes)
1 stick butter (next time, I think I'd use a half stick)
About 2/3 of a bag of powdered sugar
milk (enough to create the right consistency of frosting)

In a mixer, beat together Nutella and butter until smooth and combined.

Add powdered sugar and a few tablespoons of milk. Beat until combined.

Continue to add milk in small amounts until the frosting reaches the desired consistency. (I like my frosting soft, so it's easy to work with, but not runny).

Place frosting in a cake decorating bag (I use a Ziploc bag, with one corner snipped off and a cake decorating tip instered in open corner). Pipe frosting onto cupcakes. (I used a large tip with wavy edges). Decorate with chocolate sprinkles. (I thought about sticking a banana slice on each cupcake, but was affraid the bananas would turn brown by the time I served them).

The cupcakes turned out a little dry - not sure if I over baked them or if it was the gluten free conversion. The frosting was delicious, maybe the best frosting I've ever made. Next time I might try marbeling the Nutella in the batter, rather than dropping one blob of it in each cupcake. I think this would help add Nutella flavor to the whole cupcake, instead of just one bite. Overall, it was good recipe, and I'd definitely make them again (but only for a special occassion. As you can see, this recipe doesn't win any points for being healthy).

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