I’m going to admit first thing that I do not like the taste of cranberries, so I was a bit apprehensive about creating a cupcake for this particular Iron Cupcake: Earth challenge. It didn’t deter me, however, from my first entry into the cranberry challenge (I will submitting another entry this month); my green tea cupcakes, filled with cranberry cream cheese filling and frosted with cranberry buttercream with a drizzle of white chocolate.
I think the green tea and cranberry is a nice pairing. The overall taste of the cupcake is very sweet; the cranberry taste of the frosting is very subtle, while the strongest cranberry taste comes from the filling. I will also note that I used a small amount of red food coloring in the cranberry parts of the cupcake.
The Iron Cupcake: Earth prizes this month are from Etsy artists Lollipop Workshop, Cookie Sunshine, Lots of Sprinkles and Cakespy. Corporate prizes are from Fiesta Products, Hello, Cupcake, Jessie Steele, Cupcake Courier, and Taste of Home. For this month only we have an added bonus from Sweet Cuppin Cakes Bakery and Cupcakery Supply.
Iron Cupcake: Earth is sponsored in part by 1-800-Flowers.
Green Tea Cupcakes
based on Magnolia Bakery’s vanilla cupcake, and the same cupcake recipe I used for my my green tea cupcakes. What I did differently was divide the recipe by thirds; I ended up with eight cupcakes. For the green tea, add 1.5 teaspoons of green tea (matcha) powder to the flour mix.
Cranberry Cream Cheese Filling
* 1.5 ounces cream cheese
* 2 tablespoons cranberry sauce
* pinch of salt
* 6 ounces confectioners’ sugar
Soften cream cheese and cranberry sauce together in medium sized bowl. Add salt. Gradually add sugar, beating with electric mixer until creamy. Add red food coloring, if desired, for a brighter color.
* 1/2 cup cranberry juice
* 1/4 cup sweetened dried cranberries
* 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
* 1 3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar, more if desired for firmer texture
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
In a small saucepan, combine the juice and cranberries. Simmer over medium heat for 5 minutes, or until softened. Let cool and either strain cranberry juice, pressing the berries until most of the juice is gone, or chop the cranberries finley.
In a large bowl, combine the butter, sugar and vanilla. Beat with an electric mixer until light and creamy. Beat in the cranberries. Add more confectioners’ sugar for a firmer texture, if desired. Add red food coloring, if desired, for a brighter color.
White Chocolate Drizzle
* 2-3 squares Ghirardelli White Chocolate
Melt white chocolate in small microwave safe bowl, microwaving in short bursts of 15 seconds, stirring after each 15 seconds. Shouldn’t take more than 30 seconds total. Spoon into sturdy sandwich bag, or piping bag, cut off a small tip of one corner and squeeze white chocolate in a quick sweeping motion on top of frosted cupcakes. Top each cupcake with a fresh cranberry, if desired.