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Thursday, July 31, 2014

Blackberry Greek Yogurt Cupcakes

Today we celebrated a co-workers birthday so I whipped up some halfway a tiny tiny bit healthier cupcakes last night. The birthday girl is my fellow baker and cooker in the office so after having a discussion over fresh blackberry desserts I knew I wanted to do something with blackberries.
My favorite thing to bake is cupcakes just cause how fun and cute is a cupcake in itself?! I love how many different options you can come up and how creative I can be with decorating. For these I wanted fresh, "low fat" and cute. I decided to go with these Blackberry Greek Yogurt cupcakes.

Cupcake Ingredients:
1⅔ cups cake flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temp (cut into 6-8 pieces)
1 large egg, room temp
1 large egg white, room temp
½ Tbsp vanilla extract
1 cup plain Greek Yogurt (I used the light version)
Frosting Ingredients:
1 stick unsalted butter, soft at room temp
1½ cups powdered sugar
⅛ tsp fine sea salt
8 oz (1 stick) cream cheese, softened to room temp and cut into 8 pieces
½ cup (about 15) Blackberries to puree + 12 blackberries for garnish 
How to make the Cupcakes:
  1. Line a 12-count cupcake pan with paper liners. Preheat Oven to 350˚F. (I got 15 out of my batter)
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, whisk together your dry ingredients: 1⅔ cups cake flour, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1 tsp baking powder, ½ tsp baking soda and ½ tsp salt until well combined. Add in 6 Tbsp softened butter and with your wire whisk on med/low speed, mix for about 3-4 min or until fine crumbs form.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together your wet ingredients until combined: 1 egg, 1 large egg white, 1 cup plain greek yogurt and ½ Tbsp vanilla extract. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and whisk together on med speed until smooth (2 min). The batter will be thick and still have tiny lumps.
  4. Fill each paper liner a little more than ½ full if you want 15 regular cupcakes. Fill ⅔ full if you want 12 cupcakes with muffin tops like what you see in the pictures. Bake at 350˚F for 18-20 minutes. When finished, a toothpick inserted into the center of the cupcake should come out clean. Remove cupcakes to a wire rack and let cool to room temp.
How to Make Frosting:
  1. Puree blackberries in a small food processor, or I used an Immersion Hand Blender, then strain them through a fine mesh strainer, pushing them through with a spatula until all you have left in the strainer is seeds. Discard seeds and set the puree aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, mix the 1 stick of softened butter with 1½ cups powdered sugar and salt on low speed or until combined, scraping as necessary, for 2 min. Don’t start on high speed or you will be surrounded in a cloud of powdered sugar (lessons learned). It may seem like it won't come together at first, but it will. Give it a little time ;). Once the mixture is combined, increase speed to medium-high and beat until the cream is pale and fluffy (2-3 min).
  3. Add cream cheese 1-piece at a time and mix until combined. Once all of the cream cheese is mixed in, continue to beat 2 more minutes until fluffy, scraping down the bowl as necessary. You need your frosting to be super smooth without any globs of cream cheese or they will get stuck in the piping star, so if you see globs, keep mixing.
  4. Pour blackberry puree over frosting and continue mixing until well incorporated. Refrigerate frosting 10 minutes before piping it onto the cupcakes.
How to Decorate the Blackberry Cupcakes:
  1. Once your cupcakes are cooled to room temp, you can decorate them. I used a WILTON 2D (closed-star) frosting tip with a piping bag to frost the tops working from the outside in and up. There's enough frosting to be generous with each cupcake. Top with a fresh blackberry if desired and serve.

I think next time I will add a bit more blackberry puree. I would've liked a tad more berry flavor but I still received lots of compliments on them. If you just eat off the icing then you have a muffin and muffins are healthy so, enjoy!
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