Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Humming Bird Cupcakes

 Mimi Jr. decided to make these yummy tropical cupcake for her friend's birthday. The recipe for these Hummingbird cupcakes is from Martha Stewart Cupcakes. They were kind of a cross between carrot cake and banana bread, with the chunks of pineapple, crunchy walnuts and dash of cinnamon bringing everything together into a unique but delicious cupcake. They were very moist and flavorful without being too sweet. Unfrosted, they would make a great breakfast muffin, but everything is good with a swirl of cream cheese frosting so we definitely couldn't leave that out for these birthday cupcakes.

The sweet, slightly crispy dried pineapple flower was the perfect decoration for these cupcakes. It adds to the tropical feel of these treats, was easy to make, and tasted good! These were great for an early summer birthday, but would also be fun for a luau themed party or barbecue. We think diced mango would be a fun addition to add some more tropical flavor and texture to these delicious cupcakes.

Humming Bird Cupcakes
via Martha Stewart Cupcakes
3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pan
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 cups sugar
3 large eggs
2 cups mashed ripe banana (about 3 large)
1 can (8 ounces) crushed pineapple, drained
1 cup chopped walnuts, or pecans
1 cup unsweetened desiccated coconut
Cream Cheese Frosting - We did  not use Martha's recipe. Our favorite recipe is below.
Dried Pineapple Flowers


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees with rack in center. Line cupcake pan with paper liners; set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt; set aside.
2 .In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter, vanilla, and sugar until combined, about 2 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, incorporating each before adding the next. Beat at medium speed until mixture is pale yellow and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
3. In a medium bowl, stir together banana, pineapple, walnuts, and coconut. Add to egg mixture, mixing until combined. Stir in flour mixture.
4. Divide batter evenly among liners, filling about 2/3 full. Bake, rotating pans halfway through, until golden brown and a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 25 to 28 minutes. (ours were done closer to 22 minutes)
5. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cupcakes have cooled, frost tops of each cupcake. Decorate with dried pineapple flowers, if desired. Serve at room temperature.
printable recipe

Cream Cheese Frosting
via Cooks Illustrated

1 cup (2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 pound confectioners' sugar, sifted 
16 ounces cream cheese, cut in to 8 pieces, room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
Pinch of salt

1.In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar on medium high speed until fluffy, about 2 minutes.  Add cream cheese, 1 piece at a time, and beat until incorporated.
2.Beat in vanilla and salt.Continue beating until light and fluffy. Refrigerate until ready to use.

printable recipe

Pineapple flowers
Martha Stewart
1.Preheat oven to 225 degrees. Line two baking sheets with nonstick baking mats or parchment paper.
2.Cut top and bottom off pineapple, and slice off all the skin, but leave pineapple whole. Using a small melon ball-er, remove and discard pineapple "eyes." Using a sharp knife, cut pineapple crosswise into very thin slices. Transfer slices to baking sheets. Bake until tops look dried, about 30 minutes. Flip slices; bake until completely dried, 25 to 30 minutes more. Pinch center of each pineapple slice to shape into a cone, and let cool in a clean egg carton or muffin tin to form flowers. Refrigerate in an airtight container up to 3 days.

Ours took forever to dry in the oven and they had a caramelized edges which were delicious, but made them slightly brown, not as yellow as the pictures in the book. Martha's pineapple flowers were very yellow just like the freshly cut pineapple and I think that could be achieved if you used a food dehydrator instead of the oven.


Link:Foodie Friday at Designs by Gollum
This Chick Cooks