Joy the Baker’s Brown Sugar Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Frosting

YOU GUYS. You guys. Last week I went to a book signing with Joy the Baker at The Brooklyn Kitchen (shoutout to them, I had NO idea that awesome place was even a thing) and she did a pie dough demo and we ate pie and there was free beer and everything was great. I knew that I had to make something from her new cookbook, Homemade Decadence, and I actually didn’t make these cupcakes first…I made the black and white cookie cake, but I made it at night, and the pictures were bad, so that didn’t really happen blog-wise.

Anyways, her cookbook is amazing (you NEED to buy it), and every single recipe makes my mouth water. I already have a mental to-bake list (Peanut butter cream pie? Yes.), and her pumpkin pie with pecan praline topping is going to be my new Thanksgiving pie. It’s the best of both worlds.

These cupcakes are seriously delicious–I brought them to work and every time the container opened a yummy scent of butterscotch-y caramel-y brown sugary goodness washed over me. I only made a couple of small adjustments to suit my cake fancies.

I may or may not have spilled melted butter on this page...sorrynotsorry
I may or may not have spilled melted butter on this page…sorrynotsorry
I made the executive decision to cream together the butter and the sugar...it's so fluffy!
I made the executive decision to cream together the butter and the sugar…it’s so fluffy!
Time to cupcake! A secret: this is my only normal sized muffin pan so I had to make them in batches.
Time to cupcake! A secret: this is my only normal sized muffin pan so I had to make them in batches.
I ate so much of this frosting. SO MUCH.
I ate so much of this frosting. SO MUCH.
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I’m totally not freaking out with excitement in this picture. Everything is SO normal. Photo courtesy of The Brooklyn Kitchen.

In other news, I found a way to watch The Great British Bake Off online and I have been binge-watching it because how can I not? I always feel super-inspired after watching, and get crazy ideas like wanting to make my own marzipan, or 10-layer cakes, because why not?

Brown Sugar Cupcakes

Ingredients

  • 3 C all-purpose flour
  • 1.5 t baking powder
  • .5 t baking soda
  • 1 t salt
  • .25 t ground cinnamon
  • 1 C unsalted butter (at room temperature)
  • 2 lg eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 t vanilla extract
  • 2 C packed light brown sugar
  • 1.5 C buttermilk

Process

Preheat oven to 350. Line cupcake pans (I used one large pan and one mini cupcake pan) and set aside for later.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat butter until softened, then add sugar, beating on medium-high until light and fluffy. In the original recipe it calls for melted butter, but I like my cake a bit fluffier, so I opted to go with the softened creamed butter route. Add the eggs and egg yolk one at a time, mixing between, then add in the vanilla.

In a separate bowl, sift the dry ingredients together. Add the dry ingredients to the wet in 3 additions, alternating with two additions of the buttermilk. Stir until combined.

Spoon the batter into the cupcake tins and bake in center of oven for 20-25 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted comes out clean. For mini cupcakes, 10-15 minutes should be okay.

Let cool, then frost!

Salted Caramel Frosting

Ingredients

  • .5 C unsalted butter
  • .5 C heavy cream
  • 2 t vanilla extract
  • 1 C packed light brown sugar
  • .5 t salt (I increased this to about 1 t)
  • 3-4 C sifted confectioner’s sugar

Process

In a small saucepan, combine butter, cream, vanilla, sugar, and salt over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 4 minutes, until it is simmering and melted together. Set aside for a few minutes to cool slightly.

Pour (most of the) sugar-butter mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Add 1 C of the confectioner’s sugar and whisk until just combined, then add the rest of the sugar and beat on high until fluffy, but not too stiff. If needed, add a little more of the caramel to soften.

Frost by spreading onto cupcakes or by piping with a pastry bag. Share with friends or eat them all yourself, I won’t judge you.

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