Saturday, October 06, 2007

Lovely fall cupcakes as a thank you...

Jeff and I wanted to thank our realtor, Lori, for all of the hard work she did helping us look for and negotiate our new house in Minnesota. What else was I going to do but bake... right? It took me forever to pin down what I wanted to do though.

I didn't feel like cookies would be special enough, but I thought a cake might be too much. I did want something fallish, so I decided to make these Maple-Walnut Cupcakes with Candied Walnuts. It made 24 cupcakes so we had enough leftover that we could have a couple and also share a few with the neighbors!

Maple-Walnut Cupcakes with Candied WalnutsWith a light golden batter, the buttery cupcakes get a nutty punch with a full cup and a half of chopped toasted walnuts. While there is no maple in the batter, it comes into play with a luxurious maple buttercream frosting that shrouds the top of the cupcake. The frosting is just three simple ingredients - pure delicious maple syrup, egg yolks and butter. Using just the yolks alone gave the buttercream an irresistible smooth richness that made it fantastically hard to keep from taste-testing.

Maple-Walnut Cupcakes with Candied WalnutsTo tie in with the walnut theme of the cupcakes, we decided to adorn the cupcakes with a single candied walnut half. This is done by making a quick amber caramel (sugar, water and a drop of fresh lemon juice) and dropping the walnuts for a second to coat. When your making them, be sure to watch the caramel mixture with an eagle eye as it can go from a light amber to burned in no time. When you pull the walnuts out, you need to work quickly as the caramel will begin to set, but try and get off as much of the extra molten sugar that you can so you don't get pooling around the bottom of the walnut. You will have some extra caramel leftover, so go crazy and drizzle swirls on a piece of parchment or a silpat to make a fun crunchy candy to top of some of the cupcakes.


  1. Those sound and look amazing! Very fall appropriate, despite our summer-like weather...uggg!


  2. Sir, you are definitely an artist. I look forward to reading your blog everyday!

  3. Yum! They look so tasty and I love the garnish.

  4. Looks really good. How did she react? I would like one.

  5. Could you give the exact proportions/ directions for that buttercream? I could almost jump through the screen and grab those.

  6. I'm sure that Lori enjoyed these - lucky woman!

  7. I have enjoyed looking at all the recipes you make. Perhaps you have already answered this before, but do you have any tips for taking great food shots? I was thinking of doing My Favorite Cookies Book for the holidays, but I would love to add some great photos. My photos have not been that great, so any tips you have would be wonderful!

  8. Courtney - Tell me about it!! Although, I hear a cold front is aproaching!

    Nancy - Wow! Thank you!

    Babara - me too, the candied walnuts were addicting!

    Helene - she was not there when Jeff delivered them!

    TXchic57 - There is a link on this page to the recipe where you can find those details!

    Cynthia - We hope she did!

    T - There are a couple food bloggers that have recently posted about great techniques... once I find them again I'll reply here with a link!

  9. Gorgeously plated in that last shot, Joe!

  10. These look absolutely fantastic, I love the sugar swirls, if I saw these anywhere I would be drawn straight to them! I have linked them in our fab fall feature