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Saturday, September 27, 2008

Banana Fluffernutter Cupcakes and Mini-Cupcakes with Nutella Frosting

I'm back from my trip, and back in the blogosphere! The trip was beautiful. Venice, Bari, Olympia, Mykonos, Santorini, Athens, Croatia, and home. We had wonderful weather, tremendously enjoyable excursions, and outrageously good food. And now, we're back in the land of dollars instead of Euros, homework instead of guided tours, and peanut butter sandwiches instead of 6 course european meals. Ehh... its...good.. to be home? I'm joking. It was a great trip, but it is nice to be back in our house with our beloved puppy. Unfortunately, life is still chaotic and busy. Thesis deadlines are rapidly approaching and I need to continue doing some serious intensive work on it for the next few weeks. But, I still found time to make cupcakes.

This week's cupcake of the week, the Banana Fluffernutter Cupcake, is... really ugly. In my head, they looked quite adorable. Once executed, however, the cupcakes appearance proved to be less than cute. But oh well, they still taste good. I just don't know how well they will sell. This week's flavor combo was inspired by that amazing Fluffernutter sandwich from childhood, (or adulthood if you're a child at heart like me and still eat them) made from Peanut Butter and Marshmallow Fluff spread on bread. With the addition of banana, the flavor combo is a total winner. Banana cupcakes, topped with peanut butter frosting, and then some homemade marshmallow cream and crunchies for a garnish (an attempt to make them look a little less ugly... didn't help.)

Banana Fluffernutter Cupcakes
The Banana Cupcake recipe was the same one I used as my Hound-dog Heaven cupcakes, and the Peanut Butter Frosting is the same one I used here in the Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes (except this time I made the mistake of skipping the step of food processing the Peanut Butter... so it is much clumpier and MUCH drier...NOT cute). For the Marshmallow Cream frosting, I used this Epicurious Recipe scaled down.

Marshmallow Cream Frosting
1/3 cup + 2 teaspoons white granulated sugar
1 Lg egg white
1/8 teaspoon Cream of tartar
2 tablespoons Water
1/2 teaspoon clear Vanilla extract
Tiny dash of salt

In large metal bowl, whisk together water, sugar, egg white, cream of tartar, and salt. Set bowl over pan of barely simmering water and mix with handheld electric mixer at low speed. Gradually increase speed to high, beating until mixture holds stiff peaks, about 5 minutes.

Transfer bowl from pan to folded kitchen towel on counter and continue beating until mixture is cool and billowy, about 2 minutes more. Beat in vanilla. Cool piped frosting on to cupcakes.

Ehh, I told you they were ugly. The marshmallow frosting was pretty easy to do, and had a great consistency for piping. Very much like marshmallow fluff. I will definitely use this recipe for frosting again.

BUT THATS NOT ALL. That's right! There's a bonus recipe this week! Tonight, I have a little get-together with the girls from my Italy abroad trip. For the occasion, I whipped up some mini-vanilla cupcakes topped with nutella frosting, in honor of the delicious hazelnut spread we ate daily during our time abroad there. The cupcake recipe is my usual one, scaled down to 1/4 of the original, so that it only makes 24 mini-cupcakes (approximately 7 or 8 regular sized cupcakes). But its the frosting thats the star of these cupcakes.

Nutella Frosting
2 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons nutella
1 1/2 cups of sifted confectioner's sugar
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
Little sprinkling of salt
4 teaspoons milk

In a small bowl, In a medium bowl, using an electric hand mixer, beat softened butter, nutella and vanilla until well mixed. In a small bowl, mix sugar, salt and cocoa powder until its thoroughly mixed. Gradually, add this dry mixture to the butter mixture, adding milk as needed to get a creamy frosting-like consistency.
I got JUSTTTT enough out of this to pipe frosting on to 24 mini-cupcakes. It is very, very good if you like nutella.


Anonymous said...

This isn't a comment about the fluffernutter cakes, it's more a general comment:
Can I substitute olive oil for butter (completely) in buttercream frosting?
I also have a tip for the cupcake shipping:
(It's sold on as well)
I guess you could ask the recipient to ship it back after they've eaten the cupcake...and maybe (if you put the holder inside a box) mark "This side up" and "Fragile" on the box...

Tami said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tami said...

Sorry for the double post--darn fingers! My husband and I were just talking about Fluffernutter sandwiches last night. I've never had one (I'm from PA)but he grew up eating them. (It must be a NY thing..he's from Upstate NY, near Syracuse). Those sandwiches just don't sound appealing to me but I'd have to try one before I would completely rule them out.

Your Banana Fluffernutter cupcakes look really good to me. I would much rather bite into one of these, than into a sandwich like that. lol!

Stephanie said...

Ya know, I'm not really sure about the olive oil thing. While I always substitute olive oil in for my vegetable and canola oil, I've never done it for butter. It mighhhttt work in the cake part, but I'm not sure it would work in the frosting part - it might make it too heavy/greasy for it to be able to come out light and fluffy like frosting should be. But I can't be positive, I've never tried it! If you do ever try it, be sure to drop me a line and let me know, I'm curious!
And thank you for the shipping suggestion! I have seen the cupacake - isn't it so adorable!? I haven't purchased it yet, but I think it would work for sending cupcakes to my family - I've thought about buying a few of them, sending one or two cuppies at a time, and then making the recipient send them all back at once.

I think you're right, I think fluffernutters might be a regional thing. I was with some girls last night in Florida, and when I mentioned I made banana fluffernutter cupcakes, some looked at me like I was crazy, and some looked at me like I was an evil genius. One of the latter ones was actually from New England! Its a shame, its such a wonderful creation, everyone should have the opportunity to have one! :)

My Sweet & Saucy said...

I don't think they turned out ugly! They look different and very tasty! I love the name by the way!

grace said...

no maam, there's nothing ugly about any of those cupcakes. nothing at all. looks aren't important anyway--the flavors you've combined sound delightful. :)

Anonymous said...

I used to eat peanut butter and fluff sandwiches all the time growing up...and put it in my hot chocolate if we didn't have marshmallows.

It was also invented in the city I currently reside in, Somerville, MA!

AND, I totally love the nutella frosting, I must try this sometime!

Unknown said...

It's so great to have to back, I've missed your blog! These frostings look AMAZING and I will totally be trying them for my upcoming projects :)

Stephanie said...

Thanks everyone! :) And Lindsey, I vote for a Fluffernutter museum in your town. (Ps - I did fluff in my hot chocolate, too... its better than mallows! :)

Baking Housewife said...

One... it think they look cute! Two...what the heck is fluffernutter?! I think i want in on that! did you find Croatia? I need somewhere cheap to go on holiday and hear that it may just be the ticket!!

The housewife xx

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for the Nutella frosting recipe! I made it today for my daughter's class party and it was a hit! I will be reading your blog from here on out.

Anonymous said...

I did some cupcake today and tried your Nutella frosting recipe. It taste gorgeous. Thanks.


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