Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Peach Crisp Cupcakes

I love the fall weather, it is cool enough to break out the sweaters and boots but not yet to the point where we are trudging through the snow and ice.  The chilly mornings of the last few weeks have been a little reminder that winter will be here before we know it and to enjoy the colors and flavors of fall while we can!  The warm cinnamon flavor along with the freshness of the peaches make these cupcakes a delicious fall treat!

Peach Crisp Cupcakes
Makes approximately 20 cupcakes

Peach Cupcake
2 Cups plus 2 Tablespoons All Purpose Flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 stick unsalted butter (room temp)
1 1/3 cups sugar
½ cup peaches (I used fresh canned)
¾ cup sour cream
1/3 cup half and half (or milk)
4 Egg Whites
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tsp of juice from peaches (the peach flavor is really mild in these, if you wanted a stronger peach flavor substituting the juice for extract should work great!)

Preheat to 350 degrees, line cupcake pan. 

In bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Set aside.

In another bowl mix the ½ and ½, sour cream and egg whites.  Set aside.

In bowl of stand mixer beat the butter for about 30 seconds.  Add sugar and peaches, beat until combined.  (Due to the natural juice in the peaches the batter seems to separate a little bit, don’t worry it will be smooth once everything else had been added)

Begin to add the flour mixture in three parts alternating with the sour cream mixture, beginning and ending with the flour until all ingredients are combined

Divide evenly into cupcake pan, filling each about 2/3rds full (I find that a large cookie scoop is the perfect amount)

Bake for between 18-22 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.

Cinnamon Frosting
2 sticks unsalted butter (room temp)
1 block of 8oz cream cheese (straight from fridge)
4-6 cups of powdered sugar (depending on how thick you want it, I used about 5 cups and it piped great!)
4 Tablespoons half and half
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tsp ground cinnamon (I would start here and add to taste depending on how strong you want the cinnamon flavor)
Meringue Powder(optional – sometimes I add a little bit to help stiffen the frosting without adding additional sugar…this does not change the taste of the frosting, I added about a tsp.)

In stand mixer beat butter and cream cheese until smooth and creamy.  Gradually add powdered sugar one cup at a time until each is incorporated.   After all sugar is added add vanilla extract and cinnamon.  Add the half and half one Tablespoon at a time until the frosting is the consistency that you want. 

Crumb Topping
3/4 cup all purpose flour
½ cup sugar
4 Tbsp cold butter

Combine flour and sugar in bowl; mix the butter in until the mixture has a crumb consistency.  Spread on baking sheet and bake for about 15-20 at 300.  Check it regularly so that it does not burn, I just let it get to a gold brown color.

Pipe the frosting onto the cupcake (I used an Ateco #8 round tip), sprinkle crumb mixture onto frosting immediately so the frosting does not set first. 

I garnished with a slice of fresh peach…if you decide to do this do not do so until you are ready to serve.  I was about half way through the batch when my husband so innocently asked me “won’t those brown”…oops!   FYI..they do J!

Enjoy & Happy Fall!