From these cupcakes I must highlight the salted caramel sauce. It is the only ingredient that makes them incredibly special and delicious. If you have never tried this sauce, I recommend that you do it. It can be used with any type of sweet, such as a cake drip, on a chocolate cake or a brownie or simply eaten by the spoonful! In short, this recipe is a mix of two classics of Anglo-Saxon bakery, cupcakes with classic buttercream and the mega-known salted caramel sauce. And to this day, I have not met anyone who has not loved this sauce!
I’m not going to lie to you either, these cupcakes are a little bomb. In general, like any American recipe, traditional buttercream, which is just butter and sugar, can become heavy in large quantities. Hey! But there are tastes for everyone and there are people who love it. I personally find it heavy sometimes. But that’s where caramel sauce comes in in this recipe, and it’s no secret that adding a touch of salt to anything that’s overly sweet helps make it more balanced. And that is precisely what this sauce does in these cupcakes! Give it that perfect salty touch that makes the overall combination perfectly balanced.
Of course, they are still a caloric bomb, but from time to time nothing happens if we eat these things. I baked them one day to eat them at a friend’s move. Perfect day to give the body a good dose of calories after having been carrying boxes and furniture all morning 🙂 But don’t eat them in front of the sofa on a Netflix marathon day, eh! Then do not say that I have not warned you!
And by the way, the same day I made these cupcakes a very curious thing happened to me that I want to share with you. Before I went home after the move, I stopped by a Japanese Café in Munich where they make a killer Matcha latte (it’s not a secret that I’m addicted to Matcha latte either). I took a photo and uploaded it to Instagram Stories tagging the cafeteria account. Well, they wrote to me privately to…. Attention… offer me a full time job as a pastry chef in their cafes!!!! It may seem silly to you, but it made me very happy. That just looking at the photos on my Instagram profile offered you a full-time job as a pastry chef in a cafeteria was a great compliment to me. And also in a Japanese pastry shop, which is no secret that I am obsessed with everything that comes from Japan 🙂
Ah well, obviously I declined the offer. For the moment I am ok with engineering. But it was funny to share it anyway. And this is not the first time that happens to me. Another pastry shop in Munich, one of the few selling cupcakes, wrote to me a long time ago on Facebook to offer me a job as a pastry chef with them. So, when I get tired of working with electric aircrafts, I can always consider professional baker as a plan B 🙂
Salted caramel cupcakes
These salted caramel cupcakes are packed with flavour! Some vanilla cupcakes filled with salted caramel and covered with caramel buttercream for a unique combination that you will love.
- FOR THE SALTED CARAMEL SAUCE:
- 200g sugar
- 90g butter (at room temperature)
- 120ml whipping cream
- 1 teaspoon salt
- FOR THE CUPCAKES:
- 125g flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon of baking soda
- 1 pinch of salt
- 125g sugar
- 125g butter (at room temperature)
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/2 tablespoon milk
- ½ teaspoon of caramel aroma (vanilla can be used as an alternative)
- FOR THE BUTTERCREAM:
- 250g butter (at room temperature)
- 500 g icing sugar
- 5 tablespoons salted caramel sauce
- 1 pinch of salt
To prepare the caramel sauce, heat the sugar in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly with a heat-resistant rubber spatula or wooden spoon. The sugar will clump and eventually melt into a thick amber-brown liquid as you continue mixing.
Once the sugar is completely melted, immediately add the butter. Be careful in this step because the caramel will bubble quickly when the butter is added.
Cook the butter with the sugar for about two minutes. If you notice the butter separating or if the sugar clumps together, remove from heat and beat vigorously to combine again.
Pour in the cream very slowly while you continue stirring. Since the cream is colder than the caramel, the mixture will bubble quickly when added, be very careful not to burn yourself or remove from heat to do it more safely. Let the mixture boil for 1 minute. The sauce will rise in the saucepan as it boils.
Remove from heat and add 1 teaspoon of salt. Let it cool down before using. The caramel thickens as it cools.
Preheat the oven to 170ºC and prepare a cupcake tray with 12 paper cups. In the bowl of the mixer (if you don't have one, use any large bowl) sift the flour and mix it with the baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the sugar, butter, and eggs. Mix, starting at low speed so that the flour does not fly off, and once they have been slightly integrated, increase the speed to medium-high and mix for 1 minute. Add the milk and the extract and beat for about 30 more seconds on high speed.
Distribute the batter evenly in the cups, filling only up to ¾ of its capacity, it would be about 1 tablespoon of well-filled batter per cup. Bake at 170ºC for 22 minutes. Check by poking the centre of one of the cupcakes with a toothpick that they are cooked before taking them out of the oven. Let cool completely on a wire rack.
To make the buttercream, mix the butter on medium-high speed until it gets pale. Add half the sugar and continue mixing on medium high speed for about 2 minutes. Add the rest of the icing sugar and mix for about 2 more minutes, until the cream turns much whiter and fluffier. Add 5 tablespoons of caramel sauce (which should be cold) and salt and beat until evenly integrated.
Poke a hole in the cupcakes with an apple corer. Fill the holes with salted caramel sauce.
To finish, frost the cupcakes with buttercream using a piping bag and the piping tip of your choice and drizzle with a bit of caramel sauce over the buttercream. Garnish with a mini Stroopwafel.