Friday, January 18, 2013

Raspberry Filled Cupcakes

I'm back! I took a few months off for holidays, relaxing and moving my beautiful new kitchen island into our house.  Now it's a new year and lots of new cakes and recipes are in LaLa Cake's near future.

I've already posted a few raspberry recipes but when pressed to make something for a dinner party I had to go raspberry again! The fresh raspberry sauce, that is the filling of these cupcakes, is just too good not to use it as often as possible. (Complete recipe at end of this post)

Start with frozen raspberries.  I used a bag of store bought frozen but if you have fresh freeze them anyway. I learned this technique when making strawberry sauce ("The Cake Bible") but it also works well with raspberries.  Let the frozen berries thaw out completely, this will allow all the water to separate from the berries.

Next scoop the berries from the juice and set aside.  

Add a few tablespoons of sugar to the juice (You can use more or less sugar depending on how sweet you like it. I tend to go for a more tart sauce) and microwave the sauce for 4-5 minutes or until the juice is reduced by 3/4 and is a syrup consistency.  Make sure the bowl you use is at least triple the size of the juice to prevent it from spilling while it boils.

Once the syrup is cooled add it back to the whole berries and stir. You can strain out the seeds for a smoother sauce. I like the slight crunchy texture it gives the sauce.This method of making a sauce helps keep the fresh taste and keeps the very red color without any discoloring from over cooking.

Scoop a little into the middle of your favorite cupcakes. The cake will soak up most of the liquid and leave you with a delicious raspberry center.  Not only is it wonderful in the cupcakes but drizzled over a piece of warm cake and frosting makes a great late-night snack! 
( You could also use it over fresh fruit for a healthier alternative too!)

Fresh Raspberry Sauce

1 bag (about 16 oz) Frozen Raspberries
3 tbl Sugar
Pinch of Salt

1. Place frozen raspberries in a large bowl and let thaw at room temperature for several hours (2-3) or 1-2 days in the refrigerator. 
2.  Once the berries have thawed scoop out the whole berries and set them aside in another bowl. 
3.  Add the sugar to the remaining berries and microwave on high for 4-5 minutes, in 1 minute increments, stirring occasionally.  Cook until the liquid is reduced by 3/4.  Make sure to use a bowl at least triple the size of the amount of liquid to allow for ample boiling space.
4.  Cool the syrup, then add it back to the whole berries, add a pinch of salt.  Chill the sauce for 30 minutes before using. 
5.  Raspberry sauce can be strained to remove seeds.  Fill your favorite cupcakes, layer it in your next cake, or drizzle it over fresh fruit and whipped cream!

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