Saturday, June 25, 2011

Cupcake Week: Caramel Apple Cupcakes

This is DAY 4 of cupcake week and I'd have to say that this is my favorite so far.  I love apples and especially apple cake.  It reminds me of my papa (please say this with a West Virginian accent) and listening to his very NOT politically correct stories about growing up in the Appalachian mountains.  These would be perfect for fall time, but they taste just fine in June too!

Caramel Apple Cupcakes

2 1/2 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
4 eggs
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
4 teaspoons pure vanilla
4 apples, peeled and shredded

1 1/2 cups caramel candies (about 25)
2 tablespoons heavy cream

Heat oven to 350 F and line cupcake pan with paper liners. Peel, and shred your apples.  I quartered and peeled the apples and shredded them with a cheese grater.  I think my next kitchen investment will be a real food processor.  

Mix the batter by blending the brown sugar, white sugar, and eggs in the mixer.  Add the oil and vanilla and mix.  Add the cinnamon, baking powder, and flour.  Mix this up and don't worry.  It looks nothing like cake batter, but tastes amazing so feel free try it once or twice.

Add in the apples and just mix in with a spoon.  This will add in more moisture and make it look like real cake batter.  I advise taking a taste at this point too.  Scoop this in the cupcake tins and bake for about 15 - 17 minutes.  The blog I got this from said to bake for 25 minutes, but they were awesome at 15 so I think that is dumb.

I LOVE the look and texture of these cupcakes.  There is more to this recipe, but if you want to stop now feel free.  They are so tasty by themselves.  You could also make these "healthy" by substituting apple sauce for the oil and maybe some honey for the sugar.  I've never done the honey thing, but I think it works and these would probably still taste just as good or better.

Melt the caramel and cream together on the stove.  Just be patient and keep stirring.   

You have to let this cool down before you spread it on the cupcakes.  Be patient.  I went to the store to buy eggs and then waited ten minutes before I spread them.  This will ensure the caramel does not just drip off.  Use a spoon and spread it on the cupcakes.  I used 26 caramels and covered about 24 of the 30 cupcakes.  Now... get ready to live.

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