I was delighted to find out that I am a runner-up in a recipe contest this month, sponsored by Mississippi Magazine. I was thoroughly impressed with the beautiful photography of all the recipes. Each photograph had a “green” element to it (not the term for being environmentally friendly, but the color) such as a plate, napkin or garnish, and this made me particularly happy because green is my favorite color.
Before I post the recipe, let me make an announcement. My darling daughter and my darling son-in-law are expecting a baby which means I will be a grandmother (gulp). I am currently brainstorming names for my sweet little grandson to call me; anything but Grandma, Mee-Maw or Nanna could possibly be in the running. Something a little more youthful sounding would be nice. Here is the happy couple at his college graduation yesterday:
Here’s the recipe. Don’t worry, the alcohol cooks out.
*Update-All of the alcohol does not cook out like I had initially thought, so please do your research before letting children eat these.
Bourbon-Pecan Cupcakes with Bourbon-Brown Sugar Buttercream
1/4 cup shortening
1/4 cup butter, softened to room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar
3 eggs, separated, at room temperature
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup bourbon
1 cup chopped, toasted pecans
Bourbon-Brown Sugar Buttercream:
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup butter
3 tablespoons bourbon
1 cup butter, softened to room temperature
3 cups powdered sugar
Toasted pecan halves for garnish
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat the shortening, 1/4 butter, and 1 cup light brown sugar at medium speed in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add the yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Sift together the flour, baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Add the flour mixture alternately with the buttermilk and 1/4 cup bourbon, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Stir in 1 cup chopped toasted pecan. Beat the egg whites at high speed in a medium mixing bowl until stiff. Gently fold into the cake batter. Line a muffin tin with paper cupcake liners. Fill each muffin cup about 3/4 full with batter. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove cupcakes from pan and cool completely on a wire rack.
2. While cupcakes are baking, heat 1/2 cup light brown sugar, 1/4 cup butter, and 3 tablespoons bourbon over medium heat in a medium heavy saucepan, whisking often, until butter melts. Continue to cook until mixture begins to boil, then boil for one minute, whisking constantly. Remove from heat and cool completely.
3. In a large mixing bowl, beat 1 cup softened butter on high speed until smooth and fluffy. Beat in the cooled brown sugar-bourbon mixture until smooth. Beat in 3 cups of powdered sugar, one cup at a time, until smooth. Frost each cooled cupcake with a generous amount of the frosting. Top each cupcake with a toasted pecan half. Refrigerate any remaining frosting for another use. About 18 cupcakes.
PS. Want to do something nice for someone? Yes, you do. Please click on this link and vote for my my cooking friend Linda’s recipe, Dutch Apple Breakfast Bake. If she wins this online voting contest, she will earn a spot to compete at the Pillsbury Bake-Off for a $1,000,000.00!!! You must register to vote, but there is only one vote per person so it will just take a minute, PLUS there are lots of amazing recipes on this site. Help someone’s dream come true today…it’s a random act of kindness, you know!