Despite the fact that I’ve always wanted to buy a kitchen torch, I still don’t have one. I was able to create a toasted meringue exterior for a cake by using the oven. And I was going to do the same for these cupcakes.
Until a while later my husband came over to the kitchen with a hot air blowing gun that he uses to fix his golf gears. And that’s how the fun part of making these cupcakes started – he convinced me to use that gun to toast the frosting! And it came out GREAT!
Because the gun releases hot air instead of hard flame from a torch, it takes longer to create the brown colour, but it toasts more evenly. And if you are too anxious about burning your goodies that you don’t even dare to blink your eyes, you might want to consider using this gun. Except I was just joking.
Ingredients (12 regular sized cupcakes):
Vanilla Cupcake with Salted Caramel Filling
1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup milk, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup salted caramel
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
3 large egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon water
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease muffin tin or line with muffin liners.
In a large bowl, sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix well.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter on medium-high speed, until light and fluffy. Gradually add sugar and continue to beat until well combined and fluffy. Reduce the mixer speed to medium and slowly add eggs until just blended.
With the mixer on low, slowly add half the flour mixture; mix until just blended. Add the milk and vanilla extract, mix until just blended. Slowly add remaining flour mixture, scraping down sides of the bowl with a spatula, as necessary, until just blended.
Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups. Transfer muffin tin to oven and bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer muffin tin to a wire rack and let cupcakes cool completely.
Using a small pairing knife, cut off the top of the cupcake in the shape of a cone. Flip the top over and cut off the cone. Fill the cavity with a teaspoon of salted caramel. Replace top.
To prepare frosting, in a large heatproof bowl, combine sugar and egg whites. Using a handheld electric mixer, beat on high speed until foamy for a minute. Set bowl over a pan of barely simmering water. Beat on high speed until frosting form stiff peaks, about 10 minutes.
Remove from heat, stir in vanilla and water, and beat for another 2 minutes until frosting thickens.
Transfer frosting to a large pastry bag fitted with a wide plain pastry tip and pipe-frost the cupcakes. The frosting will harden slightly as it cools.
Using a kitchen torch, lightly brown the frosting. Be careful not to burn the cupcake liners.