Introduction: Champagne Cupcakes With Sparkling Rock Candy
What better way to start off the New Year than with festive champagne cupcakes! These cute cupcakes will be a hit at any party, or just to make for fun! This delectable dessert is infused with champagne, and also topped with homemade rock candy!
Step 1: Cupcakes
* Gold cupcake liners (found at Michael's Arts and Crafts)
* 1 1/2 cups flour
* 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
* 1 tsp. baking soda
* 1/2 tsp. salt
* 2 large eggs (at room temp)
* 1 cup white sugar
* 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
* 1/2 cup melted butter (unsalted)/or vegetable (canola) oil
* 1/2 cup buttermilk
* 3/4 cup champagne (I used Korbel)
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line cupcake pan with liners. In a medium size bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
2. Manually or with an electric mixer, beat eggs and sugar until combined on medium/low speed (about 1 minute). Add vanilla and continue for 15 more seconds.
3. Add buttermilk and canola/butter, champagne, and mix thoroughly.
4. Slowly add the flour mixture (about 1/4 cup at a time) on low speed just until combined.
5. Fill each cupcake about halfway full.
6. Bake for about 12-14 minutes or until slightly golden (check with a toothpick to make sure batter is fully cooked).
Step 2: Buttercream Frosting
While your delicious cupcakes are baking, you can prepare the icing.
* 1 cup unsalted butter (softened)
* 3 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
* 2 tablespoons champagne
* 1 tsp. vanilla extract (optional)
1. Beat butter with mixer or by hand until creamy and smooth on medium speed (about 1 minute).
2. Add the sugar on low speed until completely combined.
3. Mix in the champagne one tablespoon at a time (and vanilla if desired).
Step 3: Hard/Rock Candy
* 3 1/2 cup white sugar
* 1 1/2 cup light corn syrup
* 1 cup water
* 1 tsp. pure vanilla oil
* 1/4 cup confectioners sugar (for dusting)
* Edible gold stars/dust (I found these at Michael's Arts and Crafts)
* 15x10 cookie sheet
* Parchment paper
* Candy thermometer (optional, but recommended)
Prepare the cookie sheet by lining it with parchment paper and spray with oil or buttter.
1. In a medium pot, combine sugar, corn syrup, and water.
2. On medium heat (no higher), keep stirring the mixture until sugar dissolves and comes to a boil.
3. Once mixture starts to boil, stop mixing it and allow it to thicken (about 25-30 minutes). Temperature should reach at approximately 300 degrees F.
4. Immediately remove from heat and add vanilla oil or any oil of your choice.
5. Pour onto cookie sheet, sprinkle with gold stars and dust with confectioners sugar.
6. Allow to cool for 45 mins-1 hour. Use mallet to break into pieces.
NOTE: It can be extremely tricky to make hard candy; but, it is crucial that before pouring it onto the cookie sheet it is at the right temperature.
Step 4: Let's Decorate!
WHAT YOU'LL NEED:
* Pastry bag/or ziplock
* Tall cup
* Edible stars/cupcake pearls
* Decorating tips (optional)
* Rock candy
With this part you can get creative with the decorating techniques you feel most comfortable with. I put my pastry bag inside a cup so that it's easier to work with. I like to use a basic flat tip (#12 from bakery crafts), or you can simply use a ziplock bag and cut a corner. Place a couple pieces of the separated rock candy to place on each cupcake. It's that easy!
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