Well, I am sort of embarrassed and very relieved to say that the cleanse is over. I gave up after 5 days…….While doing the cleanse I did feel good except for the time I was crying in my boss’s office for no discernible reason, and the other time that I got mad at my mom for having to go home after cleaning my house and landscaping my yard for two weeks. Yes, besides those odd emotional outbursts, the cleanse was good and I feel that I should attempt it again. The real problem was that I hadn’t planned ahead enough and I would come home from work STARVING only to see a nice baguette with fine cheese staring me in the face. It didn’t help that my daughter’s birthday was fast approaching, and I was busy baking.
Since the end of the cleanse, I have found the perfect recipe for vanilla cupcakes. These cupcakes are not light and airy, but rather dense, moist and very rich in flavor. The cake combined with the buttercream is a perfect treat.
The most perfect Moist Vanilla Cupcakes Ever!
Adapted from Cooks Illustrated
1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup (7 oz) sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature, cut into sections
1/2 cup sour cream
1 large egg, room temperature
2 large egg yolks, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1. Adjust oven rack to middle position; heat oven to 350 degrees. Line standard muffin/cupcake tin with paper or foil liners.
2. Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in bowl of standing mixer fitted with paddle attachment. Add butter, sour cream, egg, and egg yolks, and vanilla; beat at medium speed until smooth and satiny, about 30 seconds. Scrape down sides of bowl with rubber spatula and mix by hand until smooth and no flour pockets remain. At this point, the batter will be fairly thick.
3. Divide batter evenly among cups of prepared tin using ice cream scoop . Bake until cupcake tops are pale gold and toothpick or skewer inserted into center comes out clean, about 20 to 24 minutes for regular sized cupcakes Or about 15 minutes for the mini-cupcakes. Transfer to wire rack; cool cupcakes to room temperature, about 45 minutes.
I frosted my cupcakes with the regular Wilton Buttercream recipe. The first day, I used regular food coloring for the frosting—going for hot pink and lavender cupcakes for daughter’s birthday. I just couldn’t get the colors right. For the second attempt, I bought the Wilton icing gels (the concentrated colors) and it worked SO much better. It was amazing how little color was needed to make the nicest brightest colored buttercream.
My friend and master cake decorator, Mary Ellen, made the little red chocolate hearts and was responsible for the pretty dusting as well.