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Peanut Butter Cupcakes

Today is August’s birthday!  She told all her students that her favorite chocolate candy is peanut butter cups (non-chocolate is gummy peach rings).  With 147 students, she got lots of peanut butter cups!  Last year, one of them brought her a peanut butter cake, and she was hooked.  Likely a new tradition now, she asked Zach to make her a peanut butter cake for her birthday today.  This recipe and its proportions, even for the frosting, are appropriate for a triple layer 9″ cake or 24 cupcakes, and if you happen to have chocolate peanut butter cups around the house, this is a creative way to put them to use.

peanut butter cupcakes

peanut butter cupcakes

• For the cake:

2 1/4 cups of cake flour

1 1/4 cups of vanilla’d sugar

1 cup of buttermilk

1 cup of creamy natural peanut butter

1/2 cup of butter

2 eggs

2 tsp. of vanilla extract

1 1/4 tsp. of baking soda

1 tsp. of baking powder

Nonstick cooking spray (and paper muffin cups if making cupcakes)

batter ready to be baked (note the texture)

batter ready to be baked (note the texture)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  If making a cake, spray three 9″ round pans with nonstick spray; if making cupcakes, line two muffin tins with muffin cups and lightly spray with nonstick spray.  Sift together the flour, baking soda, and baking powder; set aside.  Mix together the sugar, peanut butter, and butter with a hand mixer until creamy and combined, about 2 minutes.  Add the eggs, one at a time, and the vanilla extract, mixing for an additional 2 minutes.  While mixing, alternately add the flour mixture and the buttermilk as such: 1/3 of the flour, half of the buttermilk, 1/3 of the flour, the rest of the buttermilk, the rest of the flour; it is important not to over-mix during the phase, because you don’t want to end up with bread.  Pour the batter evenly into the three round pans, or with an ice cream scoop, portion out the batter into the 24 muffin cups.  Bake the large rounds for 22-25 minutes; cupcakes bake for 18-20 minutes.  Test for doneness by inserting a toothpick – if it comes out clean, it’s done.  Let cool before frosting.

• For the frosting:

3 cups of powdered sugar

1 cup of creamy natural peanut butter

8 oz. of cream cheese at room temperature

1/3 cup of heavy whipping cream

2 tsp. of vanilla extract

With a hand mixer, combine the peanut butter and cream cheese until fully blended.  Add the cream and vanilla, and mix for another minute.  Add the powdered sugar 1 cup at a time, blending well in between adding each cup.  Once the last cup is fully incorporated, mix for another 3 minutes.  For easy piping, fill a pastry bag fitted with whatever tip you want (but larger would be easier) and pipe to your heart’s content.

Optional garnish: cut several chocolate peanut butter cups into quarters and place on top of the frosting.

Second optional garnish: top with honey roasted peanuts.

Third optional garnish: stripe with dark chocolate.

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Posted on October 7, 2013, in Recipes and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

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