I made these back in early October when I was on a bit of a cupcake streak. I made one batch of the cupcakes, and made half a batch of the two different icings below for variety. I never could decide which one I thought was the better combination. My opinion varied from day to day, or between afternoon and evening. Try them both ways and feel free to offer your opinion!
3 cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/4 cups sour cream
1/2 cup fresh** strawberries, pureed
1 small package strawberry Jello
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, cut into small pieces
2 cups sugar
5 large eggs, room temperature
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Sift flour, baking powder, soda, and salt into a medium bowl. Whisk to combine evenly. Stir the sour cream, strawberries, jello, and vanilla together in a large liquid measuring cup and set aside.
Beat the butter on high in a stand mixer with the paddle attachment until light and creamy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Continue beating while gradually adding the sugar - it should take a couple of minutes to completely incorporate all the sugar. Continue to beat until very light and fully, about 3-4 minutes more. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
On low speed, add the flour mixture in 3 parts, alternating with the sour cream in 2 parts, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Scrape the sides of the bowl as you mix. Blend thoroughly.
Scoop the batter into prepared muffin tins (either lined with cupcake papers or greased and floured). Lightly tap the pans on the counter so that the batter settles evenly.
Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 18-22 minutes. Cool in the pan on a rack for 5-10 minutes, then place cupcakes onto the rack to cool completely.
Yield: 36 cupcakes (if I'm remembering correctly)
*Can be prepared as 2 9-inch round cakes. If doing so, cool in pan on a rack for 20 minutes before turning cakes out onto the rack to finish cooling.
**Substituting frozen strawberries for fresh works just fine.
Source: Modified from FoodNetwork.com Raspberry Cake
Cream Cheese Icing
2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/2 up unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sifted powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
In a medium bowl, cream together the cream cheese and butter until creamy. Mix in the vanilla, then gradually beat in the powdered sugar. Store any leftover frosting in the refrigerator after using.
Source: Adadpted from Allrecipes.com Cream Cheese Frosting II
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
6 cups powdered sugar
3 teaspoons vanilla extrat
4 teaspoons Grand Marnier*
2 pinches orange zest
2 dashes cinnamon (you want to be able to taste the slightest hint of cinnamon in the icing)
Mix butter and powdered sugar on low speed until just combined. Add vanilla extract, Grand Marnier, orange zest, and cinnamon. Beat on high until frosting is at the desired consistency. Taste and adjust the vanilla/Grand Marnier if necessary (I added a little extra of both), but be careful not to overdo!
*Substituting Triple Sec works just fine.
Source: Adapted from Foodie Bride