I love color. I love every single color!
I love Red
oh and I adore Yellow
surely I love Green
I love the calming sensations of Blue
and I love the backdrop for the stars that is given by Indigo
and who could forget about the vivaciousness of Violet
What can I say, I’m a color lovin kinda gal! I tend to steer clear from plain jane characteristics. But every now and again, generally while in Trader Joe’s shopping for breakfast food, it occurs to me how much I adore Vanilla. Vanilla yogurt with vanilla granola and oh my Vanilla Cupcakes with vanilla beans!
Using vanilla beans in cupcakes is a way good idea. Like big time. Like not having expectations for holidays like Valentines Day and New Year’s Eve good idea. That’s always a good idea.
Making these cupcakes is also a good idea. Doooooooooooo it!
adapted from The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook
For the cake:
120g plain flour
140g caster sugar
1 ½ tsp baking powder
a pinch of salt
40g unsalted butter, at room temperature
120ml whole milk
¼tsp vanilla extract
¼ vanilla bean with seeds scraped out
Vanilla Meringue Buttercream
found on the wonderful Joy the Baker’s blog here
4 ounces egg whites
8 ounces granulated sugar
12 ounces unsalted butter, softened
pinch of salt
Place a medium sized pan with about 3 inches of water over medium heat. Place egg whites and salt in a medium sized bowl to create a double boiler over the simmering water.
Once water is simmering, place bowl of egg whites over water, making sure that simmering water does not touch the bottom of the egg white bowl. Whisk egg whites and gradually add 8 ounces of sugar.
Whisk egg whites and sugar over double boiler, whisking constantly, until sugar is completely dissolved, about 5-8 minutes.
Remove egg white bowl from double boiler and pour egg white and sugar mixture into the bowl of an electric mixer. With the whisk attachment, whisk egg white and sugar on medium speed for about 4 minutes.
While the eggs are whisking, cut softened butter into large chunks, about 8 chunks per stick of butter. When egg white mixture has body and is slightly cooked, stop the mixer and switch to the paddle attachment. With the mixer on medium speed, add butter one chunk at a time, letting each chunk of butter incorporate into the egg white mixture for about 20 seconds.
Continue to slowly add the butter chunks, stopping the mixer to scrape down the bowl as necessary.
As you are adding the last chunks of butter, the buttercream will start to look curdled. Don’t worry, just keep the mixer going and add the remaining butter, it will all come together, and the curdled look will disappear.