Monday, August 15, 2011

White Chocolate & Blackberry Cupcakes

I can't believe this summer is almost over.

The television is full of ads about back to school shopping: book bags and pencils galore. It brings me back to the days of picking out that perfect outfit for the first day of school, getting the newest Trapper Keeper and being up to date with the latest Lisa Frank folders.

It was such a bittersweet time- the excitement of new outfits, new classes and new friends, but the sadness that there would be no more long days at the pool and sleeping in.

Those were the days...

These cupcakes are bittersweet too, but in a different kind of way..

The light and oh-so-sweet white chocolate cake is topped with a tart blackberry buttercream; the perfect "bittersweet" flavors of the summer time.

I liked this cake so much that I've even decided to use it as one of my flavors at my wedding! 

White Chocolate Cake 
recipe from Epicurious
Makes almost 30 cupcakes 
or 3 8-9 inch cakes

8 oz white chocolate, chopped
2 1/4 cup AP flour
2 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
10 TBS butter, softened
1 1/3 cup sugar
4 large eggs, room temperature
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup whole milk

Preheat oven to 350 and prepare muffin tin with cupcake liners.
In a double boiler, stir white chocolate over simmering water until melted and smooth. Remove from heat and set aside.
In a medium bowl, sift flour, baking powder and salt. 
In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. 
Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition.
Beat in vanilla.
Add dry ingredients alternating with milk in 3 additions, beginning and ending with dry. 
Add warm white chocolate and beat until just blended.
Use an ice cream scooper and fill cupcake liners 2/3 way full.
Transfer to oven and bake for about 20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

Blackberry Buttercream
1/2 cup butter (1 stick), softened
1 cup shortening (preferably high-ratio)
4 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 fresh blackberries, pureed
1/2 tsp vanilla

In a large bowl, beat butter and shortening until well blended.
Add half of powdered sugar and beat until fluffy.
Add pureed blackberries, vanilla and remaining powdered sugar, beating until light and fluffy.
*Don't be afraid to add more powdered sugar if its too thin or a little water or milk if too thick*

Pipe a nice big dollop of frosting on each cupcake and top with a fresh plump blackberry.