Vegan MoFo: cupcakes for breakfast!  »

So yeah, I eat cupcakes for breakfast like it ain’t no thing.
This is the Caramel Apple Spice Cupcake from my much-loved copy of Veganomicon. I made a few minor tweaks to the recipe.

For the cupcakes!
2 tart, firm apples (I used Gala)
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 Tbsp. vegan margarine (I used Earth Balance)
1 cup “milk”
1 Tbsp. lemon juice (bottle FTW!)
1/3 cup canola oil
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. lemon extract (because it’s easier to keep around than lemon zest)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg

Preheat your oven to 350°F, and line your muffin tin with liners. Dice the apples into little pieces (next time I would use a food processor to get them reeeeeeaalllllly little).

Heat a skillet over medium heat, and stir in brown sugar and margarine until it starts bubbling, when you’ll add those apples. Cook and stir every so often until the water has mostly evaporated and the apples are kinda brown. This might take 15 minutes, so be patient. Then cool for a bit while you perform the next steps.

Whisk your “milk” and lemon juice in a big bowl, and let it sit for a few minutes to witness the miracle known as “curdling.”

Beat in oil, sugar, and extracts. Dump in the dry ingredients and stir only until moistened. Fold in the apples and whatever mystery liquids remain in your skillet (you thought I forgot about them, didn’t you?). Pour batter into your cupcake liners, and bake for 20-22 minutes until they pass the toothpick test. While they cool, make your frosting.

For the caramel-penuche frosting!
1/2 cup sugar
3 Tbsp. vegan margarine
1 Tbsp. molasses (god, I love when I get to use molasses, don’t you?)
1/2 cup “milk”
pinch of salt
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Put everything except the powdered sugar and vanilla into a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.

Keep stirring once in a while until it’s been boiling and foaming (much like rabies!) for eight minutes or so. Remove from heat, but don’t let it cool too long because this frosting is more of a bitch to work with the cooler it gets.

Beat the mixture with the vanilla and half the powdered sugar for a few minutes. Then add the rest of it. Electric beaters produce best results for me, but go for it by hand if you have guns of steel. Spread it onto your cupcakes stat. Eat for any and every meal of the day, upside-down with a spoon; you’ll see why.

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