Saturday, 29 September 2012
Banana and Brown Sugar Cupcakes
I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with making cupcakes.
Cupcakes were the first thing I ever made, the classic 'five-year-old' recipe, and I loved presenting them proudly to anyone I could find. Then I went through a 'I'm too old to make cupcakes' phase, sick of them being the only thing anyone ever let five-year-old 'make'. I'm still incredulous that a 'Kid's cooking class' can consist of decorating premade cupcakes. 'COOKING'? I don't think so!
At the moment I do love a good cupcake, though I'm still wary of the stereotype that 'kid's can only make cupcakes and pizza', so I try to make them as elaborate and tasteful as I can. We've had SO many bananas through our fruit co-op lately, and I'm loving putting them in anything I can think of. There are lots of banana's in this recipe, but it's a sacrifice I'd be willing to make again. A good banana cupcake is worth a few banana's, isn't it? Plus you can eat more of these cupcakes because they have fruit in them!
This brown sugar icing is really good! I was asked for the recipe more than once, a direct result, I'm sure, of the rich, sweet caramel like flavour and the beautiful colour, however, I think the biggest magnet is the fact that this icing is essentially just brown sugar in a form which is socially acceptable to just eat, without the weird looks and tutting that tends to accompany the eating of sugar straight from the spoon.
So, if you want to make these cupcakes and just lick the icing off, feel free to do so. It's been done. However, I would highly recommend eating the cake inside; behind it's inconspicuous appearance, the flavour might just surprise you!
125g (4oz + 1 tbsp) butter
175g (6oz) sugar
2 large mashed ripe bananas
1 tsp Baking soda
2 Tbsp boiling milk
1 tsp baking powder
225g (8oz) flour
1. Preheat the oven to 170˚C (325˚F)
2. Cream butter & sugar till light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time.
3. Mix in mashed bananas. Dissolve the baking soda in the hot milk, and add that in too.
4. Mix in sifted flour & baking powder. Dont overbeat the batter.
5. Spoon into cupcake tins and gently push a sliced banana into the top of each one, so it sits flat in the batter.
6. Bake in the preheated oven for 18-25min. You want them to be light golden brown and a toothpick should come out clean. If desired, sprinkle each with a little brown sugar whilst still hot. Makes about 18 standard cupcakes
Brown Sugar Icing*
1/2 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup milk
2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar, more or less
hot water, optional
1. In a saucepan, melt 1/2 cup butter, then add the brown sugar.
2. Bring to a boil and lower heat to medium low and continue to boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.
3. Add the milk and bring to a boil again, stirring constantly. Cool to lukewarm.
4. Gradually add sifted confectioners' sugar and Beat until thick enough to spread. If too thick, add a little hot water.
*I've included the recipes separately to make it easier to use them in other ways. For example, this icing would be divine with a banana bread, a plain butter cake or a very plain, light cookie. Alternatively, I'm sure these cupcakes would be great with a cream cheese or butter cream icing. However, they do go very well together, so I would highly recommend you combine them.