Monday, August 3, 2009

Birthday Cupcakes

I just had another birthday. It was a good birthday - my daughter took me out for lunch and shopping, my husband showered me with gifts, and we got to have the whole family here for my birthday dinner. The best gift of all, though, was from God - a cool day.

I had planned an elaborate, beautiful cake for my birthday cake, but it's been so stinking hot that there was no way it was going to happend. I was resigned to a cakeless birthday. But when I woke up to a cool breeze, hope sprang up within me. It might not be the cake I'd planned, but by golly, there would be birthday cake!

What there actually was was cupcakes. One of the gifts from my splendid husband was the Martha Stewart cookbook, Cupcakes. And since I have an abundance of blueberries on hand, the Blueberries and Cream cupcakes were a natural choice. And a delicious choice.

I loved this recipe. It was easy to put together and gave lovely, light cupcakes studded with big juicy fresh blueberries. The frosting is simply sweetened whipped cream, garnished with more blueberries. A perfect way to close out a very happy birthday.

Note: the only odd thing about this recipe was that it makes 30 cupcakes. I have pans that add up to 24 cupcakes, so I used the extra batter to make 12 mini cupcakes. Good thing my sister gave me a big stack of mini cupcake papers for my birthday!

Blueberries and Cream Cupcakes
- adapted from Cupcakes by Martha Stewart

1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups cake flour, sifted
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
1-3/4 cups sugar
4 large eggs at room temperature
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1-1/4 cups milk at room temperature
2 cups fresh blueberries, plus more for garnish
2 cups heavy cream
1/4 cup confectioner's sugar, sifted

1- Preheat oven to 350 deg. F with racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven. Line muffin tins with cupcake papers. Place metal bowl and beaters of electric handheld mixer in the freezer.

2- Whisk together the flours, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

3- Cream together butter and sugar with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until they are pale and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla.

4- Reduce speed to low. Add the flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of milk, beating until combined after each. Fold in the blueberries with a rubber spatula.

5- Divide the batter evenly among the lined cups, filling each three-quarters full. Bake, rotating tins halfway through, until pale golden, about 25 minutes for standard and 15 for minis. Transfer tins to wire racks to cool completely before removing cupcakes.

6- Using the mixing bowl and beaters from the freezer, beat the cream just until soft peaks form. Add the powdered sugar and beat just until combined. (You can store it covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 hours, if you're not using it immediately.)

5- To finish, dollop cupcakes with whipped cream, and garnish with berries. Serve immediately.

Cupcakes can be stored unfrosted in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.


Skinnymum said...

Happy birthday, Lynn... May God bless you with the best of life in terms of health and happiness!

sarah said...

They were so good! Thanks for sharing with us. I sent sam to work today with one, but sadly with no blueberries to sprinkle on top :-(

Mama JJ said...

Happy birthday, Lynn!

DessertObsessed said...

Happy Birthday!
These are so cute; i love the photos!

Melinda said...

The cuppies look and sound perfect! Happy Birthday, friend. x

Grace said...

one should NEVER have a cakeless birthday! happy belated anniversary of your exit from the womb, lynn. :)

We Are Not Martha said...

I almost made these the other day! My mom just gave me the cupcake book :) Glad to hear they were good! And happy birthday :)


Abby said...

Happy Birthday! Such cute cakes. Sounds like you have a lovely day.

Rose&Thorn said...

You get me every time with the blueberries - I love them so much. They are very expensive in South Africa, and are not available every where.
I have my own little bush growing (very slowly) in my garden, so hopefully I'll get to eat some berries while I still have all my own teeth!

Dolce said...

Happy Birthday! The cupcakes look yummy. You may not have gotten a regular layer cake, but these were really cute.

Debbie said...

Happy Birthday to you! The cupcakes certainly are a special treat. They look great. It is sooo hot here today and we are expecting a heat wave this weekend - temps of 100 plus. Agh!!!

Natashya said...

Happy Birthday! How come I didn't know?
I had fun with that book too, try the pineapple upside down ones. You will not be able to stop eating the pineapple sauce!
The cupcakes look great, I wish I had one!

Sara said...

those look incredibly delicious, i am jealous! hope you had a wonderful birthday.

Patricia said...

Happy Birthday to you
Squashed bananas and stew
Bread and butter in the gutter
Happy Birthday to you....
as we say in England!!

Johanna B said...

I can't wait to make these. I love blueberries and cream. I only have one cupcake pan - a 12 holer - so I'll have to make several batches.

Elle said...

Happy birthday!!!

breadchick said...

Happy Birthday Lynn!!!

Peabody said...

Happy Birthday! Sounds like you had a nice one. I mean, sure, you didn't get a giant Spiderman cake, but hey ;).
I love that cookbook, some great ideas from it!

Susan from Food Blogga said...

Happy belated b-day, Lynn! It sounds like your family spoiled you, as they should! :)

CookiePie said...

Happy birthday!! Love those cute cupcakes!

Marysol said...

Lynn, the weather had remained cool here, up until last Sunday, when Mother Nature unleashed her fury on Michiganders. And I've been melting ever since.
I hope the scorching temperatures will cool down a bit for you.

And very best wishes for a (belated) Happy Birthday! Love those cute mini cupcakes!

Gabriel Sovereign said...

These were a big hit for my family and friends. I made them twice this week. SOOOO yummy! I changed it up a bit by using a butter cream frosting instead of whipped cream. Delicious!