Apparently cupcakes are dead. Soon all of the cupcake confectionaries will disappear just like my beloved bagel shops of the 90′s. Magnolia Bakery will need to find a new dessert to put on a pedestal (or a cake stand). Trophy will have to diversify and start selling fly-fishing gear on the side. The food world must make way for a new hip dessert, my friends. Soon the glitteratti will flock to whoopie pies or cake pops or jello molds shaped like Norman Mailer.
So as a farewell, I present to you the ultimate cupcake recipe for your consuming pleasure. It doesn’t get much better than this.
Don’t let the quantities scare you. I was making a double batch (the recipe at the bottom of the page contains the correct amounts for normal people who don’t need 24 cupcakes). You’ll need sugar, nectarines, milk, eggs, vanilla, butter, flour, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg (my pea-sized brain forgot the nutmeg in the lovely text above).
Slice the nectarines into small pieces. If they’re a bit under-ripe (as a few of mine were, and I couldn’t wait a day to let them ripen), sprinkle with a tablespoon of sugar, stir, and let sit in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the sugar and butter together with the paddle attachment until thoroughly combined. No need to cream.
Add the eggs one at a time, stirring well after each addition. Add the vanilla, then alternate additions of the flour mixture and the milk. Fold in the nectarines.
Pour into prepared muffin cups. These cupcakes don’t rise much, so you can fill them very full.
Bake for about 25 minutes. The edges will just begin to brown and the middles will spring back slightly when touched. Let cool on a rack.
When the cupcakes are completely cooled, make your frosting. A warning: this frosting has the consistency of whipped cream. Don’t make the frosting until you’re ready to frost, and don’t frost the cupcakes until they’re ready to be eaten. That sounds like a riddle. I apologize.
You’ll need heavy whipping cream, powdered (confectioner’s) sugar, and marscapone cheese. The cheese can be found at better grocery stores.
Toss all 3 ingredients together in the (cleaned) bowl of the stand mixer. Beat with the paddle attachment on medium-high to high (splash guard comes in handy) for about 2 minutes, or until medium peaks form.
Frost as soon as you’re ready to eat. Top with a small slice of nectarine or a pretty berry.
Can we talk for a minute about the texture of these puppies? They are not the least bit cakey (which I pretty much despise in any cupcake). They are moist, dense, and flecked with juicy bits of fruit. The frosting is creamy, light, and not overly sweet.
I’ve died and gone to cupcake heaven. Which is probably a good thing, since all cupcakes will be there soon anyway. More for me.
This may be my last cupcake post. I couldn’t resist.
Nectarine Cupcakes, adapted from 125 Cupcakes and Way More than 52 Cupcakes
Makes 12 cupcakes
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup whole milk
- 2 peaches or nectarines, pitted, thinly sliced and cut into thirds
Preheat oven to 350F. In a small bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, nutmeg and salt.
In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together sugar and butter until well combined. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition until light and fluffly. Add vanilla. Alternately beat in flour mixture and milk, making three additions of flour mixture and two of milk, beating until smooth. Fold in peaches or nectarines.
Scoop batter into prepared cupcake pans. Bake in preheated oven for 23-28 minutes or until golden brown and tops of cupcakes spring back when lightly touched.
Let cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely on rack.
Martha Stewart’s Mascarpone Frosting, from Way More than 52 Cupcakes
This makes a huge batch of frosting, so feel free to halve the quantities or reserve the rest for another use.
1 pound mascarpone cheese
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 1/4 cups heavy cream
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the mascarpone, cream and powdered sugar until medium-soft peaks form, 1 to 2 minutes. Be careful no to overbeat. Frost cupcakes when completely cooled.