Welcome to this month’s edition of Chelsea Has a Revelation Thanks to Tasting Tuesdays!
Here we go: I have realized I am obsessed with all things British.
As I swooned over the adorable story behind Cupcakes from the Primrose Bakery, this month’s cookbook, I started thinking about all the things I love that are English.
And of course it goes beyond bath products. A girl can be indulgent and still cultured, right? Two of my most favorite museums in the world (OK, it’s a long list, but still) are in England. And I haven’t even mentioned baked goods yet. I mean. SCONES. Come. On. And curds. And clotted cream! Oh boy. I’m getting hungry.
Basically, stuff from England is just the best. And these Primrose Bakery cupcakes, my friends, are no different. We can add them to the list of Awesome Things The Brits Have Given Us.
Seriously! They are just lovely, to steal a word from the English. I always get a little worried about foreign cookbooks because there’s so much converting they have to do, but these translate across the pond just beautifully.
These are moist, flavorful little cupcakes. The batter is infused with Earl Grey tea and isn’t very sweet–which makes it a perfect pair for the thick, super-sweet vanilla buttercream frosting.
I highly recommend having some fun with decorating these guys. I went ombre… yes. That’s right. Ombre cupcakes. Sometimes I have too much fun in the kitchen.
As always, the ladies of Anthropologie are just as sweet as the treats–they even sent me off with my own copy of my new favorite cookbook, Donna Hay Seasons! Ahh! They’re too nice to me. I love it there so much that one of these days I’m just going to move into the store and have fresh baked breakfast goodies prepared for them every morning. Fair warning, guys.
Join me next month on May 16!
About Tasting Tuesdays
Every month, I bake a recipe from a cookbook sold at the Milwaukee Anthropologie. Stop by–the goodies will be on display for you to try, and I’ll be there, too, camera in hand. I post the featured recipe and photos of the event here on the blog. (Anthropologie pays for groceries for the treats, but I have full control over the cookbook/recipe from their store as well as what I say in my blog posts.)
Earl Grey Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
Makes about 48 mini cupcakes (or 12 full sizers)
Adapted from Cupcakes from the Primrose Bakery
For the cupcakes
1/2 cup 2% reduced fat milk
4 Earl Grey teabags (I used Twining’s)
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/4 tsp almond extract (may be omitted)
2 large eggs
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons self-rising flour
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
Heat the milk in a saucepan over medium heat until it just begins to boil. Remove and pour into a glass measuring cup and add the tea bags. Cover with a cloth and allow to steep for 30 minutes, then discard the tea bags and set aside until ready to use.
Line mini muffin pans with cupcake liners and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Whisk the two flours together and set aside.
In a stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until pale and smooth, about 3-5 minutes. Add the almond extract and one egg; beat for about a minute, then add the second egg and beat for another minute.
Add one-third of the flour mixture and beat until combined, then add half of the milk mixture. Add the second third of the flour and beat, then the rest of the milk and beat, and finally the rest of the flour. Do not overbeat the batter.
Use a small cookie scoop (about 1 tablespoon) to fill the liners no more than 2/3 full. Bake for about 14 minutes until slightly raised and a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes before removing to wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
Primrose Bakery’s Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
Makes way more than enough for 48 mini cupcakes
(In fact, you could probably halve it and be just fine)
(Unless you’re like me and must consume at least a half-cup of frosting along the way to thoroughly taste test it)
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup 2% reduced fat milk
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
5 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted
Food coloring as desired
In a standing mixer, beat the butter, milk, vanilla extract, and 2 cups of the sugar in the bowl until creamy and smooth, about 3 minutes. Add the rest of the sifted sugar and and beat until smooth and creamy. This is a thick frosting, but it will smooth up beautifully when in a piping bag! Or, you can use the very nice directions in the cookbook to frost them the Primrose way.
I used Wilton Pastel 4-color icing gel set to color my frosting. I divided the frosting into three separate bowls and colored them an ombre pinky-purple spectrum! To use gel colors, dip a toothpick halfway into the jar and then dip the toothpick completely into the frosting. Use a spoon to mix it all together in the bowl. Here’s how I made the above colors.
Bright peach: One and a half dips Creamy Peach
Soft rose pink: Two generous dips Petal Pink
Pale lilac: One generous dip Petal Pink, half dip Cornflower Blue
I used a Danesco icing tip set that I unfortunately can’t find online, but I know it was a gift from Zabar’s in NYC. Anyway, use a bigger, open star tip if you want your frosting to look like mine. A similar one from Wilton would be this kind in #21.