I wasn’t fully prepared for this month’s Iron Cupcake Earth challenge. I also couldn’t give it my total concentration because a variety of personal/family things have needed top priority this month.
I did try to make a white chocolate cupcake, filled with basil cream and frosted with strawberry meringue buttercream earlier this month, but that attempt failed – sunken cupcakes and non-fluffy meringue! Not to mention, I didn’t have enough basil to make basil syrup.
So my entry, with just a couple of days until the deadline, is, admittedly, a hurried and not full-hearted attempt at creating a basil cupcake.
A strawberry cupcake, filled with basil whipped cream, frosted with strawberry mousse that has chopped up basil in it. The taste? I’ll just say that basil cupcakes are not high on my list of favorite cupcake flavors.
- Strawberry cupcakes:
- ⅔ cup whole fresh or frozen strawberries, thawed
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour, sifted
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon coarse salt
- ¼ cup whole milk, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 large egg, room temperature
- 2 large egg whites, room temperature
- Basil whipped cream:
- ¼ cup sugar
- ¼ cup water
- 5 ounces basil or mint
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- Strawberry mousse frosting:
- 2 cups fresh strawberries, rinsed
- ⅓ cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon unflavored gelatin
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- For the cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners; set aside.
- Place strawberries in a small food processor; process until pureed. You should have about ⅓ cup of puree, add a few more strawberries if necessary or save any extra puree for frosting; set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside. In a small bowl, mix together milk, vanilla, and strawberry puree; set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter on medium-high speed, until light and fluffy. Gradually add sugar and continue to beat until well combined and fluffy. Reduce the mixer speed to medium and slowly add egg and egg whites until just blended. With the mixer on low, slowly add half the flour mixture; mix until just blended.
- Add the milk mixture; mix until just blended. Slowly add remaining flour mixture, scraping down sides of the bowl with a spatula, as necessary, until just blended.
- Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups. Transfer muffin tin to oven and bake until tops are just dry to the touch, 22 to 25 minutes. Transfer muffin tin to a wire rack and let cupcakes cool completely in tin before icing.
- For the basil whipped cream: Bring sugar and water to a boil, stir until sugar dissolves. Chop basil or mint and add to the mixture. Boil for 3 minutes. Cool to room temperature.
- Beat whipping cream on high until stiff peaks form add the five to six tablespoons of syrup to taste and beat until combined.
- For the strawberry mousse frosting: Combine raspberries and sugar in a saucepan and cook over medium heat. Stir mixture until it is basically a liquid. Stir in gelatin, continue to cook until dissolved. Remove from heat and transfer to a medium sized bowl. Refrigerate overnight.
- Beat heavy cream on high until stiff peaks form. Add the three tablespoons of sugar and beat until combined.
- Mix about a third of the whipped cream into raspberry mixture until well combined. Fold in remaining whipped cream.