Stupid Cupid Cupcakes

Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner; Styling: Jan Gautro

Strawberries look uncannily like hearts; that's why we named this recipe Stupid Cupid. It's one of our original Valentine's Day flavors that is requested year-round. Top one with a fresh strawberry or a chocolate dipped one- either way, it's a sweet way to say, "You have my heart."

Yield: 24 cupcakes
Recipe from Southern Living Big Book of Cupcakes

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Ingredients

  • Strawberry Cake:
  • 12 ounce frozen sliced strawberries in syrup, thawed
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose soft-wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons strawberry extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon red liquid food coloring
  • Paper baking cups
  • Vegetable cooking spray
  • Chocolate Frosting:
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1/3 cup whipping cream
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 16. oz package powdered sugar
  • Toppings:
  • 24 fresh strawberries
  • Chocolate jimmies
  • Chocolate Ganache:
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 8 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped

Preparation

  1. To prepare Strawberry Cake, preheart oven to 350 degrees. Process strawberries and syrup in a blendor or food processor until smooth and pureed. Beat butter and sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer in a large bowl until creamy. Add 1/2 cups strawberry puree; beat 1 minute.  Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating until blended after each addition. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; add to butter mixture, beating until blended. Stir in strawberry extract and food coloring.
  2. Place paper baking cups in 2 (12-cup) muffin pans, and coat with cooking spray; spoon batter into cups, filling two-thirds full.
  3. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks, and cool completely.
  4. To prepare Chocolate Frosting, beat first 4 ingredients at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add powdered sugar, beating at low speed until blended. Beat at high speed 2 minutes or until creamy. Makes 3 cups.
  5. Fill each cupcake with Chocolate Frosting. To fill cupcakes, insert the end of a wooden spoon or dowel into the center of the cupcake to make a hole. Fill a zip-top plastic freezer bag with filling or frosting. Use scissors or kitchen shears to snip about 1/4 inch from one corner of the bag; insert bag into the hole in the cupcake. Squeeze gently until filling comes to the top of each cupcake.
  6. Frost each cupcake with Chocolate Frosting.
  7. To prepare ganache, cook cream in a heavy nonaluminum saucepan over medium heat, stirring often, just until it begins to steam (do not boil); remove from heat. Place chocolate in a glass bowl. Slowly add hot cream to chocolate, beating with a whisk until chocolate melts and mixture is well blended. The mixture will thicken as it cools. Makes about 2 cups.
  8. Place 1 fresh strawberry on top of each cupcake. Top each cupcake with chocolate jimmies, and drizzle with warm Chocolate Ganache.
  9.  
Note:

A tip from Dreamcakes Bakery: To warm Chocolate Ganache, microwave in a microwave-safe bowl at HIGH 15 to 20 seconds.

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