David actually chose this dessert. He saw me browsing through ideas when I was trying to decide what to make and these cupcakes caught his attention. He is a big fan of fruit desserts, and really loves strawberries, so he was excited for me to make them. After this long, cold winter we’ve been having, I thought it would be good to make something like this to remind us of summer and warmer months. I made a strawberry cake a few years ago and really enjoyed it, but haven’t make anything like it since, and I thought it was time to try it again. One major aspect of this particular recipe is that is contains strawberry frosting, rather than a vanilla frosting or cream cheese frosting. It also contains lemon zest, which turned out to be a great addition to the strawberry flavor.
These were really great cupcakes. They were nice and moist and had a great strawberry flavor, although I would add more strawberry puree next time to make it even more strawberry-like. I really can’t say enough about the frosting. It was more of a strawberry buttercream, since the primary ingredients were butter and powdered sugar. You beat the butter cold, and I thought there was no way it would ever get to the right consistency. I kept beating it and scraping down the bowl, and it was slowly getting there. Once I added the strawberry puree, it came together like I thought it would. It was perfectly sweet and I wouldn’t change a thing about it. I had a little bit left over, so I was able to enjoy the rest straight out of the bowl!
Sprinkles Strawberry Cupcakes
2/3 cup whole fresh or frozen strawberries, thawed
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt (i used kosher salt)
1/4 cup whole milk, room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
zest of 1 lemon grated
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 large egg, room temperature
2 large egg whites, room temperature
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners; set aside.
Place strawberries in a small food processor; process until pureed. You should have about 1/3 cup of puree, add a few more strawberries if necessary or save any extra puree for frosting; set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside. In a small bowl, mix together milk, vanilla, lemon zest and strawberry puree; set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter on medium-high speed, until light and fluffy. Gradually add sugar and continue to beat until well combined and fluffy. Reduce the mixer speed to medium and slowly add egg and egg whites until just blended.
With the mixer on low, slowly add half the flour mixture; mix until just blended. Add the milk mixture; mix until just blended. Slowly add remaining flour mixture, scraping down sides of the bowl with a spatula, as necessary, until just blended.
Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups. Transfer muffin tin to oven and bake until tops are just dry to the touch, 22 to 25 minutes. Transfer muffin tin to a wire rack and let cupcakes cool completely in tin before icing.
sprinkles’ strawberry frosting
1/2 cup whole frozen strawberries, thawed
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, firm and slightly cold
Pinch of coarse salt
3 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Place strawberries in the bowl of a small food processor; process until pureed. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together butter and salt on medium speed until light and fluffy. Reduce mixer speed and slowly add confectioners’ sugar; beat until well combined. Add vanilla and 3 tablespoons strawberry puree (save any remaining strawberry puree for another use); mix until just blended. Do not overmix or frosting will incorporate too much air. Frosting consistency should be dense and creamy, like ice cream.