Friday, 8 August 2008

Jalapeno Orange Marmalade Cupcakes

Yes, you read right.

I love cupcakes. I think that they are the perfect way to eat cake. They bake nicely and they are cute. Well, they are cute in books and on other people's sites. I lack decorating skills.

This is something I would like to remedy over time. I would like to make nice cupcakes, I really would. There is something magical about them, nobody is unhappy with a cupcake in front of them.

This week.... this week I am making cupcakes with jalapenos in them.

I know what you are thinking. I have finally lost it. Spending too much time alone with puppies has finally addled my mind. You may be right about that but I do have a legitimate reason for baking cupcakes with jalapenos in them. Cupcake Hero. Slush from Quirky Cupcake's now one year old challenge of making a cupcake from the theme ingredient. This month's hosts are Rachel of Tangerine Tart and Teri of the 90/10 rule. They picked jalapenos as the featured ingredient, spicy chicks that they are.

So, on to the cupcakes!

Jalapeno Orange Marmalade Cupcakes
adapted from 125 Best Cupcakes - recipe for orange date cupcakes.

6 jalapeno peppers, ribs and seed removed and tops sliced off nicely.

Slice peppers fairly thinly and put slices and tops in one cup of simple syrup and simmer until tender - about 3-5 minutes. Strain and keep syrup in fridge for up to a week for spicy cocktails.

Put tops aside and chop jalapenos.
(Simple syrup is half water, half sugar - heated until combined)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Line one regular cupcake pan with paper liners.

1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
pinch salt
chopped jalapenos
1/4 cup marmalade
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup soft unsalted butter
1 tbsp grated orange zest
2 egg whites
1/2 cup buttermilk


1. In a small bowl, mix together dry ingredients.

2. In stand mixer, beat sugar with butter. Add orange zest, mix. Add egg whites, one at a time. Beat until light and fluffy. Add marmalade and jalapenos, mix. Add dry mixture and buttermilk alternately. Three additions of dry and two of buttermilk. Scoop into prepared pan and bake 20-25 minutes until cake tested comes out clean. Cool on rack in pan for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and finish cooling. Frost or ice.

For the frosting, I was cleaning out the fridge. I whipped some cream cheese with a little sugar, marmalade and a touch of vanilla. I then folded in some leftover sweetened whipping cream.

Ice the top of the cool cakes, place a jalapeno top on half of them and store in the fridge. I sprinkled these with some light orange sugar.

How were they? Pretty good! The jalapeno heat was dissipated by the simple syrup and the orange was a nice accompaniment. They really were like nothing I have ever tried before.

I know Slush from Tuesdays with Dorie and that baking club has made me a better baker in just a few short months. Let's see if my cupcake skills improve, they can only go up!