Thursday, September 2, 2010

Somebody Stop Me: Grand Marnier Cupcakes

Wannabe cupcake photo shoot

I am not a cupcake person/maker.

I don't know how this whole thing even started anymore. I didn't beg my mom for cupcakes for my 12th birthday - I requested a lemon meringue pie in exchange for a birthday cake.

I eat muffins, not cupcakes.

Yet, the cupcake will never die. They are too cute and perky and small children and real life adults who do normal things all like cupcakes. And so I made more, ahem, adult ones.

These were inspired by my old volleyball teammate and wildly celebrated "Greek Sista" (maybe 1 of the 5 students at my Alma mater of Greek heritage), who applauded my proposition of making cupcakes with the intoxicating orange laced liquor, which I normally reserve strictly for my strawberries. The cupcakes turned out fantastically fresh tasting with a hint of bitter orange and that fun cognac-y twist. Also, totally fabulous to eat poolside.

Grand Marnier Cupcakes

3 eggs
2 cups AP flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup shortening/unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup Grand Marnier (if you are a hard core aficionado, pump it up to 1/3 cup)
1 1/3 cups buttermilk
1 tablespoon orange zest

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Meanwhile, grease and lightly flour cupcake tins (or cupcake holders). In a medium bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

In a large mixing bowl beat shortening with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar and Grand Marnier; beat until well combined. Add egg 1 at a time; beating well after each addition. Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk to shortening mixture, beating on low speed after each addition just until combined. Pour batter into cups.

Bake for 18 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick inserted near centers comes out clean. Cool cakes on wire racks for 10 minutes. Remove from holders and cool thoroughly. Frost with Grand Marnier Cream Cheese frosting.

Grand Marnier Cream Cheese Frosting
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softening
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons Grand Marnier
1-2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
1 cup sifted powdered sugar (or more to taste)
1 teaspoon orange zest

Beat cream cheese, butter, Grand Marnier, orange juice and vanilla with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Blend in orange zest. Slowly add powdered sugar to reach spreading consistency.

Greek Sista


Esi said...

Hmmm, methinks you're becoming a cupcake maker..just sayin ;)

Peter G | Souvlaki For The Soul said...

As a love of all things citrus (especially orange) these look sensational! Bravo Anna...hope you're settling in well in Portland.

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

I love Grand Marnier. Those cupcakes look beautiful and must taste heavenly!



stuffycheaks said...

good job-judging from how empty that bottle looks! I still have a full bottle of Kahlua that I bought a year ago to make a flan.

Helen said...

Those look so amazing! Bet they tasted awesome. Hurray for adult cupcakes :)

Banana Wonder said...

Esi - Methink you are oracle! We'll see :P

Peter - Efxaristw! Yeah, you know how we Greeks like cirtus in our glyko.

Rosa - Thank you!

Stuffycheaks - hehe, well the bottle had been used (ahem, for my strawberries) beforehand. I think you have some serious Kahlua cupcake making to do, sista!

Helen - Thank you! They were yummy, now I want to try with other boozes :P

Nicolette said...

I shamelessly love cupcakes in nearly every form. These, however, just upped the ante. Delish!

sophia said...

I'm a great muffin lover myself, and detest cupcakes. But hey, they're cute and in style, so why not bake some? And with booze, just to jazz it up a bit? ;)

Nathan Hazard said...

you are single-handedly making cupcakes desirable again with these boozy recipes!

Banana Wonder said...

Nicolette - I am digging the cupcakes too, now, but maybe only the boozy ones :P

Sophia - Muffin lovers unite!

Chocomeat - Lol thanks. I thought you'd like these ones :)

Diana said...

These look amazing! The piping of the frosting is perfect too! Look at you Miss Food Stylist! You should submit these to Tastespotting!

Ruth Abatzoglou said...

I love the photos, it looks like the cupcakes are just floating in a light blue space.

Banana Wonder said...

Diana - Hah, oh thanks! I will look into that Miss Tastspotter.

Ruth - Thanks :) I don't know what I'm going to do without the pool background now :P