Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream filling and Maple Italian Meringue Frosting
1 stick butter (melted)
1/4 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs (at room temperature)
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup and 1 Tbsp. granulated sugar
1 can pumpkin
1/2 Tsp. vanilla
1/2 Tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
1 Tsp. cinnamon
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
*Preheat oven to 350. Makes 24 cupcakes.
1. Crack eggs into mixing bowl and beat at medium speed for 30 seconds.
2. Add the melted butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, vanilla, pumpkin, nutmeg, and cinnamon, put mixer on medium speed and allow mixture to double in size, reduce speed and stream in the vegetable oil slowly.
3. Add baking powder, baking soda, and salt, mix in thoroughly.
4. Slowly add the flour a little at a time, beating the flour into the batter thoroughly before adding more. Make sure you use a spatula to scrape the sides of the bowl!
6.Bake cupcakes for 25-30 minutes at 350. Use a toothpick to gauge readiness. When the toothpick comes out clean, they’re ready!
While your cupcakes cool down on the cooling rack, you can start to prepare the Cinnamon cream filling.
For Cinnamon Cream
1/2 cup whipping cream
1/4 cup confectioners sugar
1 block of cream cheese at room temperature
1/2 Tsp. Vanilla
1 and 1/2 Tsp. cinnamon
1. Put your whipping cream in your mixing bowl and beat on high until it starts to thicken. Add half of the confectioner’s sugar and continue to beat until you have a stiff whipped cream.
2. Add cream cheese and mix thoroughly. Increase speed gradually and ensure that there the cream cheese is completely mixed in, with no remaining lumps.
3. Add cinnamon, vanilla and the remainder of the sugar- mix thoroughly.
You want to wait until your cupcakes are completely cooled because warm cream filling is a recipe for disaster and will leave you will completely mushy and leaking cupcakes. Patience pays off in this case. I used a pastry bag with a syringe to inject my cupcakes- you can get them for 3 bucks in your baking aisle at your grocery store, or, barring that, you CAN cut a small divot in the cupcake, hollow out a little hole, fill, and replace the divot. If you have the patience for this, then all the more power to you. Anyone who knows me, however, would laugh in my face if I suggested I would do this.
Carefully inject filling into your cupcakes. If you watch, you will see them start to plump up. Just as they plump, STOP. If you continue to fill, they will crack. Fill all 24 cupcakes. You will have some cream filling leftover, but you can use it for all sorts of things- topping for raisin toast, bagels, french toast, hot chocolate, etc.
Lastly, you want to do your frosting. Now, everyone knows I very very rarely follow a recipe. The ONE recipe I will always follow is the one I found for Italian Meringue Buttercream frosting from Joe Pastry, which you can find here (scroll to the bottom of the page for the recipe). I added 1/2 tsp of organic Maple extract and 2 Tbsp. of REAL maple syrup (Do NOT use faux maple syrup. If I get wind of it, i’ll drag you to Vermont and tie you to a maple tree.) at the end for the flavoring. I used a pastry bag to pipe the frosting onto each cupcake, and lightly sprinkled cinnamon on the top for aesthetic purposes.
Here is the finished product. While this isn’t a project to do when you are pressed for time, it is WELL WORTH the time that it takes to make these. Oh, and please pardon my poor piping skills. i’m still learning!