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Strawberry Cupcakes with Strawberry Meringue Buttercream

June 27, 2011

The baby shower was a huge success yesterday! The star of the shower (besides my glowing sister, of course) were my Strawberry Cupcakes with Strawberry Meringue Buttercream.

Heaven, in cupcake form.

My sister, Rachel’s beautiful centerpieces!

Our backyard, pre-party.

The first time I prepared these cupcakes I failed, miserably. The cupcakes alone were delicious. They were extremely moist, sweet, and full of freshly chopped strawberries. The problem lies with the Strawberry Meringue Buttercream. I typically shy away from recipes requiring candy thermometers—I’m a college student, I don’t own such things! However, this frosting recipe received fantastic reviews and I was up for the challenge. Plus, it was finals week and I will do anything to avoid studying.

The meringue buttercream was a disaster before I even began separating my egg whites. I had stayed up late the night before studying and baking cupcakes so perhaps it was my lack of sleep contributing to the problem. The problem was dividing the recipe by ¾. I typically halve every recipe I prepare because… well, I would not be the Bite-Sized Baker if I didn’t. On this particular day, I baked more than usual because I was planning on giving the cupcakes away to my boyfriend and his house full of football players. I successfully divided all the ingredients by ¾, but I somehow managed to forget to reduce the butter quantity. Now, I know what you’re all thinking, “the more butter the better.” But even Paula Deen would frown in disgust at the amount of butter I used in this frosting. It turned out to be a greasy, inedible mess. Unfortunately, I had limited ingredients and time on hand to reconstruct my frosting disaster, so I ended up making a quick, simple strawberry buttercream. The cupcakes were still delicious with the buttercream frosting, but my earlier baking failure was haunting me and I was determined to create a meringue buttercream.

My failed attempt- Pink, greasy doo-doo.

The second time I attempted this recipe it was a huge success! Since my previous experience was a complete failure, I took all the necessary precautions when preparing the recipe, including a candy thermometer, a stand mixer, and a calculator. The meringue buttercream was silky, buttery, and smooth. Everyone at the party compared the frosting to strawberry ice cream! It was de-licious… and pretty too!

All of the cupcakes!

Chandler was exhausted after hosting!

However, I must admit, this frosting does take quite an effort and a big chunk of time, but do not be discouraged because you will be rewarded! I am so glad I made this recipe again because it was entirely worth it and I look forward to using the meringue buttercream base with other flavor combinations!

Strawberry Cupcakes Recipe by Annie’s Eats:

2 ½ cups cake flour
1 tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. salt
½ cup unsalted butter
1 ½ cups sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup buttermilk
¼ cup oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups chopped strawberries

Sift flour, salt and baking soda into a medium bowl.  Set aside.  In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Add eggs one at a time until combined.  Add buttermilk, oil and vanilla and beat until combined.  Add flour mixture and stir until just combined.  Fold in chopped strawberries.  Fill cupcake wells ¾ full with batter.  Bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack.

Strawberry Meringue Buttercream Recipe by Annie’s Eats:

1½ cups fresh strawberries (8 oz.), rinsed, hulled and coarsely chopped*
4 large egg whites
1¼ cups sugar
3 sticks (1½ cups) unsalted butter, at room temperature

To make the frosting, place the strawberries in a food processor or blender.  Puree until completely smooth.  Combine the egg whites and sugar in a heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water.  Heat, whisking frequently, until the mixture reaches 160° F and the sugar has dissolved.

Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer** fitted with the whisk attachment.  Beat on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form and the mixture has cooled to room temperature, about 8 minutes.  (The bowl should be cool to the touch.)

Reduce the speed to medium and add the butter, 2 tablespoons at a time, adding more once each addition has been incorporated.  If the frosting looks soupy or curdled, continue to beat on medium-high speed until thick and smooth again, about 3-5 minutes more.  Blend in the strawberry puree until smooth and completely incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

Fill a pastry bag fitted with a decorative tip with the frosting. Frost cooled cupcakes as desired, and garnish with fresh berries or berry slices.

Makes 22 Servings

Nutritional Information**

Serving Size: 1 cupcake

Calories: 333

Fat: 19.1 g (Saturated 10.5 g)

Cholesterol: 65 mg

Carbohydrate: 38 g

Fiber: 0 g

Protein: 2.9 g

**Note: I calculated nutritional facts using a feature on Daily Burn.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Jody permalink
    June 28, 2011 10:44 am

    These are delicious cupcakes! Loved them and love you too!

  2. November 28, 2011 12:49 pm

    I love your style of writing :)
    And that cupcake platter looks ready to be devoured!!!
    Continue on dude seriously!!! :)
    I had a massive brownie fail the other day so I know what you mean completely :P

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