Mini Vanilla Cupcakes with Swiss Meringue Buttercream

I have been on cupcake duty ever since my friends have discovered my passion for whipping these sweet, pretty cakes up. These fluffy mini cupcakes were destined for my cousin’s baby shower. As you can tell from the predominant color, she’s having a little girl.

 

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I could not find my trusty kitchen thermometer and wanted to make Swiss meringue buttercream. So I made it without a thermometer. And it turned out perfect. I used Martha Stewart’s method (i.e. touching the egg whites and sugar mixture). Once the sugar has dissolved, you test it by rubbing it in between your fingers. If it’s smooth, it’s ready to be whipped up. So easy!

 

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In between mouthfuls of cupcakes, my cousin unwrapped all those useful gifts we showered her with: 30 frilly dresses, 6 pairs of furry booties, pink leggings, grey leggings, white leggings, yellow leggings, and of course, a few bibs. I do believe baby now has more clothes than her mother.

And a sugar-high…like her aunt.

 

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Makes 24 mini cupcakes

 

Cupcake

 

2 eggs, separated

½ cup sugar

1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extract

1 ¼ cup flour

1 ½ tsp baking powder

½ tsp baking soda

½ tsp salt

½ cup buttermilk

½ cup vegetable oil

 

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F or 180°C. Line a mini muffin pan with paper liners.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, whisk 1 whole egg, 1 egg white, the vanilla extract, and the sugar on high speed until light and fluffy.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  4. Add the dry ingredients into the egg mixture, and beat until well incorporated.
  5. Add ½ of the buttermilk, then ½ of the oil, scraping down the bowl after each addition. Pour in the remaining buttermilk and the remaining oil and whisk until batter is smooth.
  6. Fill each liner to the top with batter.
  7. Reduce your oven temperature to 325°F or 170°C and bake for 12 minutes or until cupcakes are puffed up and golden and a toothpick comes out clean.
  8. Let cool completely before frosting.

 

For chocolate cupcakes, add 100 g of melted bittersweet chocolate to your cupcake mixture at the same time as the buttermilk and oil.

 

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Swiss Meringue Buttercream

 

2 egg whites (you can use one of the ones from the recipe above)

½ cup sugar

½ tsp salt

1 tbsp vanilla extract

½ cup butter, room temperature

 

  1. Combine egg whites, sugar, and salt in a large glass bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Whisk until sugar has dissolved (approximately 5 min). The mixture should feel warm and smooth when rubbed between your fingertips.
  2. Pour your frosting into the bowl of your stand mixer and beat on high speed until mixture turns white and creamy (approximately 5-7 minutes). Add the vanilla and beat until stiff peaks form. This takes an extra minute or so.
  3. Add the butter and whisk on medium-high speed. If your mixture curdles, it is OKAY. Keep on beating on medium-high speed until frosting comes together.
  4. Place in a piping bag and decorate your cooled cupcakes.

 

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