Thursday, March 3, 2011

Cupcakes for a Friend


First Friday's. That's what a few friends and I call our time together. We have decided that we will get together on the first Friday of every month. That way we know we will get to see each other and we will (try) not to make any other plans!

My friend B emailed to remind me that our other friend's birthday was coming up and that we (read: me) should make something sweet and that she will bring party hats! The birthday girl doesn't like chocolate and she loves peeps! I didn't have time to go to the store to get her peeps so I scoured the cupboards and cookbooks to see what I could make with ingredients I had on hand. I found this recipe for Vanilla cheesecake crumb-top cupcakes and they sounded delicious!


I made a few substitutions and changed a few things from the recipe and I do believe they probably made for a better cupcake. I used cake flour instead of AP flour, butter instead of corn oil, yogurt instead of sour cream and omitted the lemon from the cheesecake filling. An amazingly light, moist cake with the wonderful cream cheese topped with sugary-crumbs. These are so good. I recommend you go and make them right away. It may look like a lot of steps but I was able to get these into the oven in 30 minutes (which is how long the baby decided to nap!).

My friends both loved them (as did their boys) and I'm looking forward to enjoying a few more with some coffee this afternoon.



Vanilla Cheesecake Crumb-Top Cupcakes
Adapted from cupcakes! by Elinor Livans

Preheat oven to 325. Line the muffin tins with cupcake liners. Spray the inside of each liner with nonstick cooking spray.

Make the cheesecake filling and topping. Then make the cupcakes. (See all recipes below)

Assembly:

Spoon about 3 tablespoons of the batter into each liner. Spoon about 1 1/2 tablespoons of cheesecake filling into the center of each; it will spread slightly over the batter. Sprinkle a generous tablespoon of crumb topping over each (the more the better for me).

Bake just until the edges brown lightly and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Cool the cupcakes for 20 minutes in the pan on a wire rack before removing.

Cover and store at room temperature for up to 2 days.

Cheesecake Filling

8 oz. package cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1 large egg, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Using an electric mixer on low speed, beat the cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Beat in the egg. Mix in the vanilla. Set aside

Crumb Topping

1/2 cup cake flour
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Stir the flour, brown sugar and salt together using a large spoon. Add the melted butter and stir until crumbs form.

Vanilla Cupcake Batter
1 1/4 cups cake flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup whole milk yogurt (strained overnight to make a thick yogurt cheese)

Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl and set aside.

Using an electric mixer, beat the egg and yolk (on medium speed) and sugar until thickened and lightened to a cream color, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. On low speed, mix in the butter and vanilla until blended. Mix in the yogurt until no white streaks remain. Mix in the flour mixture until batter is smooth.

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