Peanut butter cupcakes

Cookbook Challenge 2011: Fortnight 11
Theme: Cup
Recipe: Peanut butter cupcakes
From: Primrose Bakery Cupcakes

On to fortnight 11 of the Cookbook Challenge. With the theme being “cup” I pulled out one of my cupcake cookbooks to make peanut butter cupcakes. I had a lightbulb moment when I realised that not only do cupcakes fit the theme, but I could also top the peanut butter cupcakes with a mini Reese’s peanut butter cup. Genius! (Thank you, thank you.)

I haven’t done much baking lately. One reason is because one of my colleagues has gone on a diet. Sadness. Pre-diet, he would eat most of the baking that I take into work, but because it’s not cool to derail other people’s diets, I haven’t wanted to take in any temptations. Since the three of us at home can’t generally eat a whole cake or batch of cupcakes… no baking for us!

But when I realised I was catching up with some food bloggers this weekend, it was the perfect opportunity to offload some of my baking. I was so excited for these cupcakes – peanut butter cupcakes topped with a chocolate ganache icing – SWOONSWOONSWOON. The chocolate ganache was wonderful to work with. The recipe in the book uses cream, chocolate and butter, but since I never have cream in the house I just melted down chocolate and butter and it worked perfectly! After it cooled a bit, I was able to spread a spoonful on top of the cupcakes, smooth it out, and then place half of a mini Reese’s peanut butter cup on top .

What I should’ve remembered though, is: THIS COOKBOOK MAKES TERRIBLE CUPCAKES. πŸ™ I used it last year to make pandan cupcakes and I said at the time: “Taste wise, I didn’t think that much of the cupcakes… I found these cupcakes a bit dry, and they weren’t as fluffy as I would have liked.”

I thought the exact same thing about these peanut butter ones. $#@%##$

Well. At least they looked good and I liked the peanut butter plus chocolate idea. If anyone would like to give them a try, the recipe is below.

(Who wants to take bets on whether I’ll forget all about this next year and bake another disappointing batch of cupcakes from this book!)

Other Cookbook Challenge posts can be found here and see what other participants made for this theme at the Cookbook Challenge forum.

Peanut butter cupcakes

From: Primrose Bakery Cupcakes

Makes 12

75g unsalted butter, softened
130g smooth peanut butter
190g dark soft brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
120g plain flour, sifted
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
60ml milk

Preheat the oven to 160C and line a 12 hole muffin tray with cupcakes cases.

In a mixer, cream together the butter, peanut butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well between each addition, and then mix in the vanilla extract.

Combine the flour, baking powder and salt in a separate bowl. Add a third of the flour to the butter mixture and mix on a low speed until combined. Pour in a third of the milk and mix again on a low speed until combined. Repeat these steps until all the flour and milk has been added.

Spoon the mixture into the cupcake cases to about 2/3rds full. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until cooked.

Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool. When completely cool, top with chocolate icing (recipe below) and half a Reese’s mini peanut butter cup (if desired).

Chocolate icing

Note: I’ve halved the recipe that was in the book because you’ll only need this amount.

30g unsalted butter
150g good quality milk chocolate, broken into small pieces
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Place the butter and chocolate into a heat proof bowl and set over a saucepan of simmering water. Wait until all the butter and chocolate melts, stirring occasionally.

As soon as it’s all melted, remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Set aside for 5 minutes to cool slightly before topping each cupcake with a spoon of icing. (If it’s too runny, let it cool for a bit longer. If it’s too cool and too thick, put it back on the heat to melt a bit.)