Monday, February 14, 2011

Raspberry-White Chocolate Cupcakes

        Happy Valentine's Day! Does anyone have anything special planned? My husband and I are heading to the movies tonight. We are going to watch "True Grit". I'm super excited since this is like the first time since moving here that I'm going to the movies! I don't know why it's taken us this long to go. For the most part I am not a big movie goer. I prefer to wait until it has come out on video and watch it from the comfort of my own home..However I'm happy to say that my husband surprised me with the tickets and I can't wait to go! One thing thats different about the movies over here is that they stop it half way so you can get up and use the restroom or get something to eat. You can also drink alcohol while watching the movie aswell.

This weekend I needed to get several things baked up. I had an order for giant heart shaped lemon sugar cookies and I went ahead and whipped up these cupcakes for us to share today. The recipe comes from My Gourmet Connection. The cupcakes are raspberry flavored only but you can add fresh raspberries to go on top if you like. They are a cinch to whip up and have a nice flavor to them. The recipe calls for 1 teaspoon of grated lemon zest. I didn't taste it in the cupcakes so you can leave out if you aren't a fan of the zest. I would start checking the cupcakes to see if they are done slighlty before the 20mins. I thought they were slighly dry and was probably due to the fact that in my oven they cooked a bit faster.

The frosting is really delicious and I must confess that I left out the white chocolate! I had planned on using it, but I burned it while trying to melt it in the microwave. I don't whats wrong with me but I have the worst time melting chocolate both in the microwave aswell as on the stove top. Incase you don't have the white chocolate,the frosting is just as awesome without it.

Raspberry-White Chocolate Cupcakes

1/2 cup Unsalted Butter;Softened
2/3 cup Sugar
1 tsp. Lemon Zest
1 tsp. Raspberry Extract
1/2 tsp. Vanilla Extract
3 Eggs
1-1/2 cups All-purpose Flour
1-1/2 tsp. Baking Powder
1/4 cup Milk

Frosting
1/2 cup Butter;Softened
1/4 cup Half-and-Half
1/2 tsp. Vanilla Extract
3/4 tsp. Raspberry Extract
Pinch of Salt
1 or 2 drops of Red food coloring
2 cups Powdered Sugar
1/4 cup White Chocolate Chips
Fresh Raspberries for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 or 180 celcius. Line a 12 cup muffin tin with liners and set aside. In a small bowl,combine the flour, baking powder and salt;set aside.

Beat the butter,sugar, lemon zest, and both extracts with an electric mixer on medium speed until very smooth..About 3 mins. Add the eggs,one at a time and continue mixing until well blended. Add half of the dry ingredients into the butter-sugar mixture and continue mixing until well combined. Mix in the milk and the remaining flour mixture. Continue mixing,scraping the sides of the bowl as needed until the batter is smooth and creamy.

Spoon the batter into the paper-lined muffin cups. Bake 20-22 mins or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool in pan for 5 mins before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the frosting: Using an electrix mixer on medium speed, beat the butter, half and half, vanilla extract, raspberry extract, salt and food coloring until thoroughly blended. Add the powdered sugar and continue beating until smooth and creamy.

Melt the white chocolate in a glass bowl in the microwave. Melt the chocolate on 80% power and stirring every 15 seconds until melted. Stir the melted chocolate into the frosting mixture and beat on medium speed until well incorporated. Frost cooled cupcakes and top each one with a fresh raspberry.
Makes 12 cupcakes.