A few months back Bacon Tuesdays at work was born, thanks to Not Quite Nigella who posted a recipe for bacon jam on her website. I persuaded one of my coworkers to make the recipe and the rest, fortunately and yummily, was history. Although we took a break for awhile, we've relaunched Bacon Tuesdays with the recipe I made for Bacon Cupcakes.
I know. Sounds a little offputting doesn't it. But from my own personal opinion, there are few things that bacon does not make better so for a late celebration of someone's birthday at work, I bought in Bacon Cupcakes today. They were, I am gratified to report, a hit. Although putting any one of us at work together with sugar and bacon is bound to be a success. I did find the frosting a little sweet so next time, I would cut down on the amount of powdered sugar in it. And although i found the cupcake itself to be a lot more dense than I had expected, a soak in some maple syrup and a rest after frosting made a marked improvement overnight. Still very sweet mind you but the bacon flavor especially is more noticeable in both the cake and frosting after 24 hours.
Would I make these again? Maybe. I would want to do some tweaking with the recipe, experiment with different flavors, maybe take out the cake flour and replace with regular flour for a softer moister cake. But this was still worth the calories I took in between tasting the frosting (I had to make sure it was safe to bring to work after all) and the cupcakes I ate today.
Maple French Toast Bacon Cupcakes
(From Food Network)
For the Cupcakes:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup cake flour
1 3.9-ounce box instant vanilla pudding mix
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 tablespoon potato starch
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 large egg whites, at room temperature
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup half-and-half, at room temperature
1/2 cup chopped cooked bacon (5 strips)
For the Frosting:
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, at room temperature
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 strips bacon, cooked and chopped (optional)
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Place paper liners in a 12-cup muffin tin.
Prepare the cupcakes:
Combine the flours, pudding mix, baking powder, potato starch, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in a bowl with a whisk.
In a separate bowl, cream the butter and sugars with a mixer on low speed until combined, 6 to 8 minutes. Gradually mix in the vanilla and egg whites. Scrape down the sides of the bowl; continue mixing until light and fluffy. Add the flour mixture in 3 batches, alternating with the maple syrup and half-and-half, mixing after each addition and ending with flour. Mix until the ingredients are just combined; do not overmix. Fold in the bacon.
Pour the batter into the prepared muffin tin, filling each cup about three-quarters of the way. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 40 minutes. Cool completely.
Meanwhile, prepare the frosting: Beat the cream cheese and butter with a mixer on medium speed until creamy. Add the confectioners' sugar, maple syrup and cinnamon; beat until combined. Spread on the cooled cupcakes; top with chopped bacon, if desired.