Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Strawberry Cupcakes with Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting: I'm stubborn

If you ask Husband what my greatest fault is, he will without hesitation respond that it is that I am stubborn.  I am the type of stubborn that is annoying to most people as it is the kind that has to rhyme or reason.  Sometimes I'm just stubborn just to be stubborn, without any real cause.  If Husband gently asks me to not do something (like put cilantro in his food since he doesn't much care for it) I will put it in, just because I like it and I think he should too.  In my head, if he eats it enough he'll love it, and most of the time rather than enjoying the dish, Husband wants to clonk me on the head with the bowl full of food he doesn't want.  I'm stubborn in that super annoying way.

Friends hate going out to dinner with me, because if insist on paying, I'll stubbornly get my way.  (I don't always want to pay, but when I do, watch out.)  I'm known to cause scenes in restaurants as I knock people over to pay the bill and scream at the top of my lungs at the server to not to take the other person's money.  I've even one time pinned my friend's hands down so she couldn't get her purse just so I could pay.  (I am twice her size easily, so it wasn't really much of a competition.)  I'm stubborn when I want to do something my way.  (Again...many people have managed to take me out to a lovely meal - it is just agreed upon before that they are taking me out for a specific reason and then I let them pay.)

I'm also pretty stubborn about my beliefs.  I hate artificial colors in food and drinks and I try to avoid them at all costs. However both Daughter #1 and friend JEL's daughter want pink cupcakes for their birthday and I have been mulling over endlessly how to create one that wouldn't involve anything artificial, color or otherwise.   I came upon the idea to use freeze dried fruits a while ago, and finally decided to execute some cupcakes using them to see how they would taste and turn out.  The first round of cake was not a big success, but this second round of cake was a great success.  It is moist and dense with a faint hint of pink.  I went with a buttermilk based cake idea (sort of thinking I wanted something like the velvet cupcake) and then settling on this particular mix of ingredients.  The frosting tastes like strawberry ice cream so much so that someone asked me to day if I melted strawberry ice cream for the frosting.

For fantastic ideas on how to package cupcakes to give as a special gift, check out Jen's Sillie Smile post where she sources and finds ways to make cupcakes even more beautiful. 
< Strawberry Cupcakes with Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting
Makes 30 cupcakes

Strawberry Cake
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1.2 oz (34 grams) freeze dried strawberries, pulverized in a mini food processor
3/4 cup low-fat buttermilk
1/2 cup pureed fresh strawberries
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake tins with liners.

Mix together flour. baking powder and salt. Set aside.

In a large measuring cup or bowl, mix together buttermilk, strawberry puree and vanilla extract. Set aside until needed.

Using an electric mixer, beat butter and granulated sugar in a mixing bowl until pale, about 2 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in pulverized strawberries.
Mix in flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two batches of buttermilk mixture. Mix until just combined, scraping down bowl as needed. (I like to mix the last bit by hand using a spatula to make sure I get all the stuff at the bottom.) Scoop batter into cupcake tins.

Bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean, about 21 to 24 minutes. Allow cupcakes to cool in tins for 10 minutes, and then remove cupcakes and place them on a cooling rack.

Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting
Makes enough to frost 30 cupcakes

1 cup of butter, softened
8 oz of cream cheese, softened
1.2 oz (34 grams) freeze dried strawberries, pulverized in a mini food processor
5-6 cups of confectioners sugar

In a large mixing bowl, mix butter until it is softened and uniform. Add cream cheese and beat together until it is uniform. Add pulverized strawberries. Add 3 cups of sugar to the mixture and mix. 2 more cups of sugar. Mix again until mixture is creamy and spreadable. Add more sugar if necessary, otherwise prepare to frost cake.

Printable recipe

stubbornly pink


Angry Asian said...

your kind of subborn is fun to read but i can see how it can be frustrating for some. :0

i am also not a lover of artificial color.

these cupcakes are so dear!

Potholes said...

Can not wait to try this!!!!! Strawberry fenzy, let it begin!!! And the sillismile posting of gifting cupcake?? Extraordiaire~~~~~~ <3

Janice said...

Whenever I try out a new recipe that I've found on a blog my friend (chefjulieyoon.com - also a blogger) asks if I left a comment. My answer is usually no. But this frosting was sooo delicious, I had to stop by to let you know!!! It really tastes like strawberry ice cream! Great recipe..it's a keeper!

julie {chefjulieyoon} said...

Yay...Janice left a comment. Joanne- you must have really impressed her this time for her to do it. She's been following your blog and using your recipes, but never left comments and I told her that she really should :) I will be tasting this amazing frosting she made from your site tomorrow. Can't wait! Looks delish.


Joanne Choi said...

@Janice and Julie - you two crack me up! I hope it tastes good to you as well Chef Julie!

Mommy said...

are freeze dried strawberries just frozen strawberries? or are they different. I have a big bag of frozen strawberries that I need to use up.

Also, is there a substitute for the sugar? like honey powder?

Joanne Choi said...

I've never baked with honey powder - for the frosting it may not work because generally frosting relies on the finest of powders to help create that creamy texture. Within the cake however, I'm guessing that you could use the honey powder (but I have never tried it.)

Freeze dried strawberries are not frozen but rather strawberries that have had all their liquid extracted from them so they are incredibly light and crispy. Their flavor is much more intense as the water has been eliminated.

Tracy said...

I know this post is old but I was just wondering where one would find freeze dried strawberries?


Joanne Choi said...

Hi Tracy -

Trader Joe's and Target carries freeze dried strawberries. Whole Foods Market does as well.


that's an amazon link to the ones that I buy at my local trader joe's.

Anonymous said...

Could I make the frosting the night before and refridgerate it and then frost the cupcakes the following day?

Anonymous said...

Do you have to use low fat buttermilk? I usually have regular buttermilk on hand. thanks!

Anonymous said...

Anxious to try cupcake and frosting..first time with freeze dried fruit. Recipe says makes 30....I can only get 2 pans of 12 in my oven at a time......will the batter get nasty if it has to sit for awhile? I have heard not to?? Your thoughts please.... sue


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