Mulled Wine Cupcakes

We had our first snow of the season the other day, which means it’s time for me to go into full on hibernation mode. I’m kidding (kind of). I can’t wait for skiing/snowboarding season, but I also can’t wait for cozy-up-under-a-blanket-and-drink-warm-beverages season. Which led me to an idea…mulled wine cupcakes. I didn’t know if these were going to be any good, to be completely honest, but they are FANTASTIC.

mulledwine

The Cupcakes:
Mulled red wine cake
Apple cinnamon red wine compote filling
Orange cinnamon buttercream
Fresh oranges and cinnamon sticks

The recipe:

Mulled red wine cake (yields about 20 cupcakes):
2 C cake flour (or 1 3/4 C all purpose flour)
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves
4 oz (1 stick) unsalted butter (room temperature)
1 C sugar
2 tbsp orange zest
1/4 C milk (whole milk is best)
1/3 C red wine
1/3 C apple cider
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3 egg whites

(If you’re in Colorado or any other area above sea level, don’t forget to adjust for high altitude! Just send me a message and I can convert the recipe for you:) )

Apple cinnamon red wine compote filling:
1 apple
3 tbsp sugar
2 tsp cornstarch
1/2 C red wine
Juice from orange zested for cake batter
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves

Orange cinnamon buttercream:
1 1/2 C sugar
1/3 C water
150 g egg whites (if you’re using eggs, use the whites from 4 eggs)
1 tsp vanilla
1 lb unsalted butter (room temperature)
2 tbsp orange zest
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves

For the cake:
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
2. Combine flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and cloves. Whisk and sift thoroughly into another bowl. Set aside.
3. Cream sugar and butter in stand mixer or with hand mixer until light and fluffy.
4. Add half of flour mixture to creamed butter mixture and mix. Add milk and orange zest to mixture and mix. Add rest of flour mixture and mix.
5. In a measuring glass, combine egg whites, red wine, apple cider, and vanilla extract. Whisk well.
6. Add red wine mixture to batter in 3 increments, mixing on high speed for about a minute after adding each increment.
7. Line a cupcake or muffin tin with paper cupcake liners.
8. Fill cupcake tins with batter (about 2/3 of the way full).
9. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until middle of cupcake is firm to touch.

For the apple cinnamon red wine compote filling:
1. Peel and chop apple.
2. Mix apple, sugar, cornstarch, red wine, orange zest, cinnamon, and cloves together in a saucepan.
3. Bring ingredients to a boil over low heat while stirring routinely. Cook for 4-5 minutes or until thickened and remove from heat.
4. Cover and refrigerate until cool.
5. Once the filling is cool, you’re ready to fill.

For the orange cinnamon buttercream:
1. Combine sugar and water in saucepan, heat on low until boiling.
2. While sugar mixture is heating, whip egg whites, orange zest, cinnamon, cloves, and vanilla with mixer until frothy.
3. Pour boiling sugar mixture into egg white mixture while mixing.
4. Beat on high speed till cool and stiff. This is going to take several minutes.
5. Once the bowl feels cool, switch the mixer to low speed and add in butter in small chunks.
6. Beat for another few minutes on low until buttercream comes together. It will look like cottage cheese for awhile…this is completely normal and happens just before the buttercream pulls together so don’t panic.
7. You’re all ready to frost!

Cozy up and enjoy your wine-infused cupcakes, y’all!

White Rascal Cupcakes

Like any true Coloradan, I enjoy a good craft beer. Since I moved to Boulder, I’ve been taking advantage of the abundance of local breweries. One of my absolute favorite Boulder beers is called White Rascal (shout out to Avery Brewing Company)–a Belgian wheat beer flavored with coriander and orange peel. I’m obviously always pondering my next baking adventure, and sipping on this beer inspired me…thus, the White Rascal Cupcake was born.

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The Cupcakes:
Orange White Rascal-infused cake
Grand Marnier chocolate ganache filling
Orange buttercream
Orange zest

The recipe:

Orange White Rascal-infused cake (yields about 20 cupcakes):
2 C cake flour (or 1 3/4 C all purpose flour)
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
4 oz (1 stick) unsalted butter (room temperature)
1 C sugar
2 egg whites
1/4 C milk (whole milk is best)
2/3 C White Rascal beer
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp orange zest

(If you’re in Colorado or any other area above sea level, don’t forget to adjust for high altitude! Just send me a message and I can convert the recipe for you 🙂 )

Grand Marnier chocolate ganache filling:
6 oz bittersweet chocolate
1 1/2 tbsp unsalted butter
1/2 C heavy cream
4-5 tbsp Grand Marnier

Orange buttercream:
1 1/2 C sugar
1/3 C water
150 g egg whites (if you’re using eggs, use the whites from 4 eggs)
1 tsp vanilla
1 lb unsalted butter (room temperature)
3-4 tbsp Grand Marnier

For the cake:
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
2. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Whisk and sift thoroughly into another bowl. Set aside.
3. Cream sugar and butter in stand mixer or with hand mixer until light and fluffy.
4. Add half of flour mixture to creamed butter mixture and mix. Add milk and egg whites and orange zest to mixture and mix. Add rest of flour mixture and mix.
5. In a measuring glass, combine beer with vanilla extract. Whisk well.
6. Add beer mixture to batter in 3 increments, mixing on high speed for about a minute after adding each increment.
7. Line a cupcake or muffin tin with paper cupcake liners.
8. Fill cupcake tins with batter (about 2/3 of the way full).
9. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until middle of cupcake is firm to touch.

For the Grand Marnier ganache filling:
1. Melt butter in small saucepan over low heat.
2. Melt chocolate over double-boiler on low heat (or in microwave–heat in 10 second intervals, mixing in between, until melted thoroughly).
3. While butter and chocolate are melting, heat heavy cream in a small saucepan over low heat.
4. Combine chocolate and butter when melted.
5. When heavy cream begins to boil, mix into chocolate and butter mixture and whisk rigorously until well-combined.
7. Add Grand Marnier and mix well.
8. Cover and refrigerate until solid.
9. Once solid, mix with a spoon and you’re ready to fill.

For the orange buttercream:
1. Combine sugar and water in saucepan, heat on low until boiling.
2. While sugar mixture is heating, whip egg whites, Grand Marnier, and vanilla with mixer until frothy.
3. Pour boiling sugar mixture into egg whites and vanilla while mixing.
4. Beat on high speed till cool and stiff. This is going to take several minutes.
5. Once the bowl feels cool, switch the mixer to low speed and add in butter in small chunks.
6. Beat for another few minutes on low until buttercream comes together. It will look like cottage cheese for awhile…this is completely normal and happens just before the buttercream pulls together so don’t panic.
7. You’re all ready to frost! Top iced cupcakes with orange zest.

Grab a beer, live up the last few days of summer, and let out your devilish side with these awesome White Rascal cupcakes!