Friday, November 23, 2012

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

In the post-Thanksgiving haze, what a better way to gear up for the holiday season than by continuing to stuff ourselves? The fall season is on its way out, so I'm sneaking in one last autumn dish before transitioning to Christmas mode. All my girlfriends from high school went out to celebrate our best friend Kara's birthday this Wednesday, so I made these cupcakes as a birthday gift (not that we needed more food). The only thing better than great cupcakes is sharing them with great people. And I'm thankful to have so many great people to come home to each holiday season. :)

I found this cupcake recipe on Martha Stewart which has never failed me, especially when it comes to baking. These were super moist and perfectly spiced - I think I found a new go-to recipe for the fall! Autumn cooking has always been my favorite, so don't be surprised if you see a few fall-inspired dishes in the off season. (E.g. these pumpkin blueberry scones I squeaked in early fall of last year.) However, I am looking forward to making some great comfort foods this winter. Happy start to the holiday season, everyone!

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting (adapted from Martha Stewart)
Makes: 18 cupcakes  Prep: 20 minutes  Total: 45 minutes

2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp allspice
1 cup light brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
1 cup butter, melted and cooled
4 eggs
1 15-ounce can organic pumpkin
2 8-ounce packages cream cheese
1/2 cup butter
2 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
Extra cinnamon for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and allspice in a large bowl. In a separate bowl mix sugars, butter and eggs until smooth. Pour the dry ingredients into the sugar mixture, then add pumpkin. Pour into cupcake tins and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
In the meantime, make the frosting by beating cream cheese and butter in an electric mixer on high. Turn off the mixer, add powdered sugar, vanilla and pumpkin pie spice, then beat on medium speed. Put in a piping bag and ice cupcakes when cooled. Garnish with additional cinnamon.


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