Early this month when I was reading the new Master Baker ingredient, I was pleased to see it was vanilla! Earlier this month I bought a bunch of organic vanilla beans and they have been “burning a hole in my pocket cabinet”. When I was grocery shopping this weekend I noticed how yummy the strawberries looked, and they were on sale, so I had to get a carton. After much looking online, I think I have found the perfect recipes.
Coconut & Lime’s husband made her the most delicious looking cupcakes for her birthday 2 years ago. She said they were very vanilla-y so I knew I need to try them.
In this recipe the vanilla beans had to sit in the warmed milk for an hour. Since I didn’t want to be making these cupcakes at 8:00 p.m., I decided to start the warm milk mixture at lunch and I just put it in the fridge to futher saturate the milk with vanilla flavor. (Here’s the milk mixture as I added the last piece of vanilla)
I looove cooking with whole vanilla beans now. The little specks in the batter are so fun!
I asked my jknottie friends if they knew of a good vanilla frosting recipe and all hands pointed to Alanna’s vanilla frosting. It didn’t call for much butter so my Paula Dean side came out, and I doubled the butter. 🙂
I also cut up the fresh strawberries mentioned earlier and folded them into the frosting. These aren’t necessarily the prettiest cupcakes, but everything they lack in looks they make up for in flavor.
I looooved these cupcakes. The strawberry flavor really balanced well with the vanilla flavor. My friend Katy came over to get a few and she raved about them too. She gave them an A. She said she thought about giving me an A+, but I needed something to strive for next time. 🙂 I also brought the remaining ones up to work and it’s 10:00 a.m and there is only 1 left, I think that means they like them!
Recipes after the break.
Vanilla Bean Cupcakes
2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
1 egg, at room temperature
1 vanilla bean, cut length-wise
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
In a small saucepan, heat the milk and vanilla bean together until the milk just boils. Remove from heat and let cool for about 1 hour. Then remove the vanilla bean. Scrape out the seeds from the vanilla bean and add them to the milk. Discard the remaining bean pod. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350. In a medium bowl, whisk together the salt, flour and baking powder. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg and beat well. Alternately add the flour and milk mixture until well combined. Divide batter into about 20 lined or greased cupcake wells. Bake 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the middle cupcake comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack and then ice.
3 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup butter or margarine I used 1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter
5 T whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla
For frosting, beat powdered sugar and butter in a small mixing bowl. Scrape out vanilla beans and stir in into sugar mixture until they’re evenly distributed. Add whipping cream and vanilla, beat until smooth. Add remaining cream if needed to reach spreading consistency. Spread over cooled cupcakes.