Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Hazelnut Cherry & Peach Cupcakes

Summer is officially here and I am slowing down in the kitchen. Needless to say, the energy is somewhere outside the house and the baking and cooking just have to wait for my mood to pop up when there is nothing better to do!

And so the mood comes today and I wanted to make something nice to perk up the interest again. I actually wanted to make a tart instead of these cupcakes but yield to this idea as they take little time to make and I had plenty of cupcake paper liners lying around from my impulsive buying at the sight of pretty and lovely colors!

These cupcakes are something like the French friand cakes, which is rich with butter and made of nutmeal. Hazelnut is a lovely fragrant nut that adds depth to anything that is baked or cooked with it. These cakes actually tasted like the Ferrero Roche Hazelnut chocolates minus the crisp and chocolate but a soft and moist texture, slightly sweetened by the ripe peaches and cherries pieces. I love to use fruits and nuts together in my baking and hazelnut is on my top of the list for the summer palate as it is light and nutty at the same time while its fragrant sweet smell permeate the cakes, reminding how good summer is, especially when it is only here for a short 3 months. Regardless how hot or humid it can get, summer never fails to bring an abundance of fun for my kids when they are at the pool or donned in shorts all the time while I get to admire the lovely colors of nature and reap the fruits of the hot season!

I made the peach and cherry cupcakes individually and not mixed together. It is a very good thing if you can get a good batter for cakes and can just substitute any fruit fillings to it and with this batter, I just made it up plain first and divided it into half portions and folded in the fruits respectively into each batch. The cherries stand up to baking very well and retained much of their shape and plumpness but the peach inside the cupcakes itself kind of baked away, turning slightly mushy and faded. I used fresh peaches and cherries but canned ones can be used too. Or simply any other fruits can be substituted as the main flavor here is the hazelnut and the fruits just added an extra texture and color to it. I managed to get some toasted and cleaned hazelnuts and that saved me alot of time and I just took some and ground it up in the mini food processor. As nuts contain high quantity of fat, over processing them will turn them into a gooey paste and so as soon as they turn into coarse meal state, they are ready to use.

Recipe :

Ingredients :

125g hazelnut, grounded to coarse meal
50g All purpose flour
50g Cake Flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
60g sugar
2 large eggs
125g butter, almost room temperature
1 large peach, sliced and diced
1 dozen cherries, halved & pitted

1)Preheat oven to 350F/180C. Line 8 muffin pans with cupcake liners.
2)Beat the butter and sugar together till creamy. Beat in the eggs one at a time till combined.
3)Beat in the hazelnut meal till well combined.
4)Sift the all purpose flour together with the cake flour, baking powder and salt.
5)Spoon into the butter mixture and stir to mix. Divide the batter into 2 batches.
6)Mix in the peaches into one batter and mix in the cherries into the other batch. Leave some fruits for garnish.
7)Spoon into the cupcake liners. Decorate with the remaining fruits.
8)Bake for 30 to 32 mins at the bottom rack.
9)Remove and cool on rack.

Makes : 8 cupcakes

1 comment:

that's me said...

those look delicious! and easy to bake, thanks