In theme with last week’s male-orientated post, I thought it would be appropriate for me to tell you about some cupcakes I made recently. I would say that cupcakes don’t exactly have a reputation of being particularly manly. Well that is about to change.
Much like the steak salad, I believe that these cupcakes are right up most men’s street. Side-note: Isn’t it interesting how I apparently have a dislike for men, yet I love to cook for them…?
If you were to ask most men what 3 of their favourite thing things are – see how I used the word ‘most’ there – I am pretty sure that both bacon and beer will be on the list. But lets not be entirely sexist here… beer and bacon are two of my favourite things as well. So this recipe does cater for the masses. The non-vegetarian, alcohol consuming masses anyway (I’m pretty sure 99% of my friends fall into this category).
A few weeks ago I went to a great party in Sonoma on a sunny Saturday afternoon and thought this would be the perfect opportunity to bust out the beer and bacon cupcake. One of the hosts of the party works for a beer company, so I figured this was a good time to find out whether you really can (or should!) combine these two ingredients.
I think the overall consensus was ‘wow, you can really taste the beer’, followed by ‘mmm these are good’. So I think we have our answer – it is possible to bake delicious cupcakes with beer. Throw on top a swirl of maple cream cheese frosting and a sliver of candied bacon, and hey presto, you are every beer drinking, bacon eating man’s (or woman’s!) best friend.
Beer Cupcakes with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting
Serves: about 12 – 15 regular cupcakes, 20-24 mini cupcakes
CUPCAKES – INGREDIENTS
(Adapted from 1 Fine Cookie)
- 1 ½ cups cake flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- a pinch of salt
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 3 tablespoons of butter, room temperature
- 3/4 cup beer (ideally an IPA, but definitely NOT a light beer under any circumstances!)
CUPCAKES – METHOD
- Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees F and line baking tray with cupcakes cases.
- Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes).
- Add eggs one at a time and beat until smooth.
- In a separate bowl, mix together the dry ingredients and then add half to the butter mixture.
- Pour in half the beer, followed by the remaining flour, then remaining beer. Mix until only just incorporated.
- Divide among cupcake cases and bake until golden on top and the spring back when pressed (about 15 – 20 minutes).
FROSTING – INGREDIENTS
- 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- 4 tbsps unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups icing sugar
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
FROSTING – METHOD
- Best together the cream cheese and butter until smooth.
- Add the maple syrup and slowly sprinkle in icing sugar until combined.
- Taste and if you would like it sweeter, add more sugar. I prefer things on the ‘only just sweet’ side, so this is entirely down to personal preference.
- Spread or pipe onto cupcakes and top with candied bacon.
If you are a vegetarian, or just not a fan of bacon, you can obviously leave out the following…
- 1 pack of thick cut bacon
- 1 cup brown sugar
Lay the bacon onto a non-stick baking tray. Sprinkle with brown sugar on both sides. Bake at about 425 degrees F until crisp. Be careful not to overcook as you don’t want it to shatter when you cut it. I chopped into 1 inch strips so everyone got a nice mouthful of caramelized bacon when they first bite into the cupcake.