The day before March 17

by thebaking

It’s St. Patrick’s Day tomorrow.

You could celebrate, of course, with green beverages.

You could also celebrate with cupcakes: cupcakes with green icing.

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These are coffee-vanilla cupcakes with green almond and coffee-flavour icing.

The cake itself is my own – heavily modified for taste and for ingredients – version of a yellow cake recipe in an old cookbook. The icing was a put-stuff-in-a-bowl-and-mix job. But it basically followed the recipe I used here. I added almond extract and vanilla extract for flavour. And I used cold coffee as the main liquid ingredient. I used green pigment gel food colouring to get the green colour – kind of like I did here, but with slightly less green gel.

To make the cake part of the cupcakes, you’ll need:

-2 1/4 cups flour – I used whole wheat pastry flour, pretty much just because I wanted to. Regular all-purpose flour would work too.

-1 1/2 cups sugar – I used regular fine-grind white sugar

-1 1/4 cups edible liquid matter – this is where I went for the coffee flavour by using strong coffee, I used a French press, that I’d let cool down. You could use plain water, or a milk-like beverage, cold tea, or even beer.

-4 teaspoons cornstarch – I used cornstarch, but arrowroot flour or another substance of the like would work

-1 teaspoon salt

-1 teaspoon liquid vanilla extract

-4 teaspoons baking powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix, then beat, all ingredients together in a large bowl. Line a cupcake pan with cupcake papers. Then, fill each cupcake paper about 3/4 full with batter. Bake about 20 minutes or so – keeping an eye on the cupcakes to see when they look like they’re done. The old the-cake-is-ready-when-a-toothpick-stuck-in-the-centre-comes-out-clean technique is useful if you’re not sure when the cupcakes are done. Remove tray from the oven and transfer the cupcakes to a cooling rack to cool. Icing the cupcakes will be easier – and likely infinitely more functional and less messy – if you wait until they are completely cool before attempting to ice them.

For me, this recipe yielded 26 regular-size cupcakes. I baked them in two batches of 12 and one batch of two cupcakes.

When the cupcakes are completely cool, it’s time to ice – or frost, if you prefer – the cupcakes.

I loaded up my icing gun with green icing and got to work:

St Patrick's cupcakes 2

I decided to ice the cupcakes in a simple spiral pattern using a large icing tip. I made the spirals by starting at the outside edge of the cupcake tops and working toward the centre.

Here is some of the final product on display a cupcake stand:

St Patrick's cupcakes 3

And closer up:

St Patrick's cupcakes 4

Happy St. Patrick’s, St. Paddy’s, March 17, or whatever you want to call it.

Cheers, sláinte, prosit, santé, and all that.

As a post-script, check out what my dishwater looked like after washing items that touched the green icing:

St Patrick's cupcakes 5

It’s a different kind of green suds.

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