First of all, I’m not going to apologize over the quality of our pictures today. Because, even if most of the pictures of our recent Champagne and Cupcakes party were a bust, the party itself was still awesome. It occurs to me that I didn’t tell you the impetus behind the party. This Saturday, we are competing in a contest called Cupcakes For Cures, which is a fundraiser for cancer research. My work is one of the sponsors of the event, so we get two free entries. Which is awesome, actually, since the entries are, like, $50.00 each. Don’t get me wrong, it’s totally worth fifty bucks to support cancer research, we just don’t have the money laying around. But Amanda, my boss, awesomely gave me two of our entries for free.
So, the contest is separated into different categories, and they are: Gluten-Free, Special Occasion, Cocktail or Beer, Local Food, and Wedding. Almost right away I decided that we should try to make a Mojito Cupcake. I’m not sure why, exactly. Just the combination of rum, mint, and lime sounded awesome to me. We were unsure about the other entry, though. After some serious thought, we came up with a couple. First was a gluten-free version of Mickey’s Meyer Lemon and Vanilla Bean Cupcake with Fresh Thyme for the Gluten-Free category. The second, in the local foods category, was a Local Moonshine Cupcake with Local Raspberry Mousse Filling, and Meyer Lemon and Raspberry Buttercream. (We intentionally made them pretty similar, so that it would be easier to decide which was better.)
So we made all three cupcakes (along with a chocolate peanut butter, which is Jason’s favorite) and had a party to see which ones people liked best.
We were almost positive that we were going with the mojito cake, so we were glad when people seemed to unanimously agree that it was competition-worthy. People were much more torn about the other entry, though. There were certainly camps for both the Gluten-Free and the Moonshine. I’ll post more about those cakes in the next day or two. But today I wanted to give you the recipe for the Mojito Cupcakes. Oh, and for the contest, we’re calling these “I Got My Mojo Workin’.” Anyway, here’s the recipe:
I Got My Mojo Workin’ – Spiced Rum Cupcake with Fresh Mint and Lime Buttercream
You’re gonna need:
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons arrowroot powder (or cornstarch)
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup almond milk
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1/3 cup canola oil
3/4 cup white sugar
3 tablespoons spiced rum [we used Sailor Jerry’s]
So you’re going to:
1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line your muffin tin with liners that somehow evoke mojitos. Maybe something tropical, or something lime green, or, well, you can figure it out.
2. In a large bowl, combine the flour, arrowroot, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Whisk this mixture together for about thirty seconds, to make sure it’s evenly mixed.
3. Pour the almond milk into a glass measuring cup and add the vinegar to it. Let this mixture sit a few minutes, until the almond milk looks slightly curdled.
4. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the oil and sugar until very well combined. Add the rum. Now beat in the curdled almond milk.
5. Slowly pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and beat with a whisk until the batter looks very smooth. Don’t worry about over-mixing; it’s better to beat it until there are no lumps left.
6. Fill your baking cups two-thirds of the way full with batter (usually about a scant quarter cup of batter per cupcake).
7. Bake at 350ºF for twenty minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the biggest cupcake comes out mostly clean. A few moist crumbs on the toothpick are absolutely fine.
Now, set your cupcakes aside and start making your rum glaze. The recipe I used for the rum glaze is from the cupcake villains blog.
According to the Cupcake Villains, for the Rum Glaze, you need:
1/4 cup dark rum
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons margarine
So then you:
1. Simmer together the rum and sugar until the sugar is full dissolved, and let cook together for a minute longer.
2. Pull off heat, and mix in the vanilla and margarine until the margarine is fully melted.
3. Drizzle a tiny bit (maybe a half a teaspoon) over the top of each cooled cupcake.
4. Place cupcakes in the refrigerator or freezer to let the glaze set up a little.
Now, let’s make the frosting! For Fresh Mint and Lime Buttercream Frosting, you need:
One bunch fresh mint
1-3 tablespoons lime juice
1/4 cup nonhydrogenated shortening
1/4 cup margarine
2 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar
Fresh limes, sliced very thinly
Paper straws, cut into one inch segments (you can find paper straws here)
So you’re going to:
1. In a food processor or blender, blend all the mint leaves with one tablespoon of lime juice for three to four minutes, until mint leaves are very well minced.
2. Scrape mint and lime mixture into a fine mesh sieve over a mixing bowl. With a rubber spatula, press the mixture firmly to release the liquid. Continue this until there is no more liquid being released.
3. Measure this liquid, and add more lime juice until you have two tablespoons of total liquid.
4. With a stand mixer or hand mixer, beat your margarine and shortening until thoroughly combined and fluffy.
5. Sift in 1/3 of the total powdered sugar. Add 1/3 of the mint/lime juice , and beat until thoroughly combined, scraping down the sides as needed.
6. Repeat this process twice more, until all of the sugar is combined. If the frosting looks really stiff, you can add up to one tablespoon more of lime juice, but make sure it doesn’t get goopy. You definitely want it to stay firm.
4. Now you’re going to beat the frosting for 2-3 minutes until thoroughly combined and fluffy. This frosting really wants to be stiff, so it can hold the garnishes upright. If you don’t care about garnishes, and you want really fluffy frosting, go ahead and beat the frosting for 3-4 extra minutes.
5. Add a very small amount of green gel food coloring, and beat just until thoroughly combined. This stuff is potent, so start with too little and allow your frosting to get darker incrementally until the desired color is reached.
6. Pipe your frosting on the cupcakes with a jumbo closed star tip, and garnish with a slice of lime and a paper straw segment.