Look people. Sometimes, you just gotta do dessert first. And this isn’t one of those Sex in the City empowering, “lets get a small ice cream and trot around in our pumps and feel good about ourselves” desserts. No. This is something you surrender to. You give up on your day after making these cupcakes, because they’re so packed with goddamned flavor you won’t need to do anything else. And you won’t want to. In the immortal words of one Raymond Quintin Smuckles (look him up),
Nothing is more old-school than baking your own damn staff of life!
A dude who can walk into any kitchen in the world and make bread is COMPLETELY RAW!
…pretend he meant cake instead of bread. Call it a Marie Antoinette Fruedian slip or something. Just get ready to make some damn dark rum and ginger cupcakes. Because this is Fresh Beats, Fresh Eats.
-4 oz (1 stick) salted butter
-1/2 cup ginger beer (get the strong kind)
-1/4 cup dark rum
-2 tbsp cocoa powder
-1 tsp ground cinnamon
-1 tsp ground ginger
-1 ½ cups AP flour
-1 cup granulated sugar
-1/4 tsp salt
-1 large egg, beaten
-1/4 cup buttermilk
-1/2 tsp baking soda
-1 (8oz) package cream cheese, room temperature
-4 tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
-1 cup confectioner’s sugar, sifted
-2 tsp ground ginger
-1 tbsp dark rum
Look people. You gotta have something to make the damn cupcakes in. I mean, c’mon, do I have to tell you that? Otherwise you’ll have a pile of cupcake goo. Nobody wants that. Also, butter and cream cheese. Look at them. Savor them. Etc.
This right here is what jettisons these cupcakes from good to amazing. Don’t skimp, get the good stuff. Maybe drink a little too, just don’t get all confident and “I’m gonna take on the world”-y. Nobody likes a one-man musical, son.
It’s fire time. Preheat that oven of yours to 350° and set a burner to low heat. Then heat your butter, ginger beer and rum until the butter is nice and melted. DON’T BOIL IT. Seriously. Bad things will happen.
Get your cocoa powder, cinnamon, ginger, flour, sugar and salt and sift it all into a bowl.
Sidenote. When recipes call for a “heaping” tablespoon of something, that doesn’t make any goddamned sense, and you know it. It’s a fucking measurement. You can’t just tell someone to go run an extra-long mile, or donate a heaping pint of blood. Fuck you, bloggers/chefs who write that. Fuck. You.
Here you can see that sift actually means whisk. You can do either, but I recommend the one that doesn’t make you shake your arms over a bowl like a stroke victim. Your call.
Take a small bowl and beat together your buttermilk, baking soda and an egg.
Now all you gotta do is stir the warm buttery goodness into the dry stuff that you “sifted”. Then add your egg mixture and you’ll get this stuff that doesn’t look good at all!
Sometimes you don’t have cupcake liners and you have to fold together some parchment paper. Pro-tip: don’t do it like this.
Icing time. Now you get to “accidentally” get half of this on the counter and lick it up, you fat fuck. Also that totally didn’t happen to me. At all. Anyways. Cream together the cream cheese and butter with an electric mixer (bonus points if you have a KitchenAid, those things are amazing) so it’s light and fluffy. Like this. Should take about 5 minutes.
So…let’s ignore what I said before about sifting. Actually, let’s not. You’re still an asshole if you sift flour. I mean c’mon, it takes forever. And it does nothing. But confectionery sugar you want to sift. Otherwise you get icing that’s clumpy and gross, and nobody wants that. So sift that shit, then add it to your cream cheesy butter along with the ground ginger and rum, all nice and slow like.
All that’s left is to mix it up on medium-high until you get this nice consistency.
Take your cupcakes out of the oven and they’ll be this nice, brown color. That’s the color of flavor, my friends.
Slather the frosting on the tops of those cupcakes (better than I did) and top with a little candied ginger. I’d use smaller pieces than I did, mostly because mine are fucking huge. As you can see.
Now eat one. And revel.
We’re not done yet, folks. Fresh Beats, Fresh Eats doesn’t just end with a plate and a good time. You gotta have some tasty music to go with your delicious cupcakes, otherwise…you’re just eating them in silence. And that’s a level of depression a thousand tattered copies of The Baby-Sitters’ Club can’t touch. Play this while you’re slamming one of those tiny cakes into your mouth, and take flavor to another dimension. It’s Chega de Saudade by Elizete Cardoso.
There it is. Awesome cupcakes, smooth music. If you’re not eating my way, then you’re not eating right. Join me next time when I cook something and give you something else to listen to. Dunno when that’ll be. Stay patient. And stay hungry.
Thanks to Kate Legere for the recipe, from her book Intoxicated Cupcakes.
I’ve been informed since writing this that it is, in fact, Sex AND the City, not Sex IN the City. I’m not gonna go up there to change it. That’s a lot of internet-walkin’. And either way, there’s sex. There’s a city. I don’t really care if it’s in the city, or next to the city, or with the city. They could change it to “A Horse-Faced Actress and Her Three Homely Friends Have Sex Also Skyscrapers”, and I’m pretty sure I could still sleep at night.