Happy (actual) St. Patrick’s Day! Yes, the baking extravaganza continued throughout this past weekend in my kitchen, and these were my final project. I like to think that St. Patrick would be proud of them…if he liked cupcakes, that is.
The two things I love most about baking are that it is both creative and apt to make someone really, really happy. These cupcakes enabled me to be both creative, and the bringer of sugar joy to the family of one of my lovely colleagues from work, whose kids love this holiday.
Apparently, the cupcakes went over big…as you can see in the “aftermath” photo below. And yes, that is my laptop in this photo…a blogger needs her resources close by, after all!
- 1 1/4 cups cake flour
- 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 1 recipe vanilla buttercream
- green liquid food coloring
- leaf green and kelly green gel paste food coloring
- green sparkling sugar, if desired
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line one regular-sized cupcake pan and one miniature cupcake pan with paper liners.
In a medium bowl, whisk together cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
Place eggs in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and beat on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar and continue to beat for another 30 seconds.
Add vanilla and canola oil and beat on medium speed for 1 minute.
Add flour mixture and buttermilk alternatively in three batches, beginning and ending with the flour, scraping the sides of the bowl frequently. Batter will be very thin.
Using a quarter-cup measuring cup, scoop batter into prepared regular-sized cupcake liners, filling half full. Use a teaspoon measuring spoon to fill miniature cupcake liners.
Bake regular-sized cupcakes for 12-13 minutes and miniature cupcakes for 7-9 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack before frosting.
Prepare vanilla buttercream. Add a few drops of green liquid food coloring to the frosting with your mixer running on low to medium speed to achieve a light green color.
Remove about 1 to 1 1/2 cups of the frosting and tint darker green; I used a combination of leaf green and kelly green to create my shamrock color. Fit a piping bag with a small to medium-sized plain tip (I used a Wilton #5 tip) and place dark green frosting inside; set aside.
Frost regular-sized cupcakes first; using a 1-inch cookie scoop, scoop light green frosting onto each cupcake and frost in a smooth layer. Pipe shamrock shapes onto each cupcake; make three heart-like shapes then add the stem.
Frost miniature cupcakes next; replace your dark green piping bag with a large plain tip (I used Wilton 12) and pipe in swirls.
Fit another piping bag with a large star tip (I used Wilton 21) and fill with light green frosting. Pipe in swirls.
Dip half of each shade of the miniature cupcakes into the green sparkling sugar. Store at room temperature in an airtight container for 2-3 days (or store in the fridge to extend the life of your buttercream).
The aftermath at the Houser family St. Patrick’s Day celebration is as follows: