I developed this recipe to make for my gluten-free friends, but everybody loves them. It is so easy. No need to separate eggs and fold in the whipped egg whites--not that there's anything difficult about that, but it does mean another bowl and another beater, and who needs that! I like to keep the mess down as much as possible, but some days I have a tendency to make more of a mess than usual (and it's usually a day when I'm wearing black and decide to live dangerously and skip the apron).
The cupcakes are frosted with strawberry buttercream frosting. They would have piped more "sharply" and been prettier if I had added the strawberry jam before I added milk. But I had already made the vanilla buttercream when I spotted the homemade strawberry freezer jam in the fridge and decided to make it strawberry frosting. Oh well. Next time. And there will be a next time. This strawberry frosting was soooo good. It tasted like homemade strawberry ice cream.
Velvety Vanilla Cupcakes (that just happen to be gluten-free)
3 large eggs
1 cup milk, divided
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3/4 cup sorghum flour
3/4 cup potato starch
1/2 cup tapioca flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons xanthan gum
1/2 teaspoon salt
12 tablespoons (6 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put 2½-inch paper bake cups in two standard muffin tins. In small bowl, lightly whisk together the eggs, 1/4 cup of the milk and the vanilla.
2 In large mixing bowl, combine all the dry ingredients and mix on low speed for one minute to "sift." Add the softened butter and remaining milk. Mix on low speed until combined. With mixer on medium-high speed, beat for a minute and a half. Scrape the bowl.
3 Gradually beat in the egg mixture in three batches, beating for 20 seconds after each addition. Scrape the bowl.
4 Using a 1/4-cup measure, fill the bake cups with a scant 1/4 cup of batter. Bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes or until they test done with a toothpick.
5 Immediately remove from pans and cool on wire rack for an hour. They must be thoroughly cool before frosting.
Strawberry Buttercream Frosting
8 tablespoons (4 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 pound powdered sugar, unsifted
1/16 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 tablespoons homemade less sugar strawberry freezer jam
In bowl of stand mixer, or with a hand mixer, cream the butter until smooth. With the mixer on low speed, gradually beat in the powdered sugar. Scrape the bowl. Add the salt, vanilla extract and jam and beat on high speed until frosting is light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. You will likely have to add the liquid ingredients before adding all the powdered sugar. With a pastry bag fitted with a 2D or 1M tip, pipe frosting on cupcakes in a classic swirl.