Cupcake Craze Part 3: Maple Cupcakes with Espresso Buttercream & Candied Pecans

Oh maple syrup! How lovely you are, all sweet & sticky and straight from the trees. I chose maple as my final flavor inspiration in the spirit of fall. This will conclude the trio of cupcakes made to bid farewell to my lovely best friend.

Maple Cupcakes with Espresso Buttercream & Candied Pecans
yields approx 18 cupcakes

2 1/2 c. cake flour
2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. ginger

1/2 c. butter
1/2 c. brown sugar
2 eggs
2 t. vanilla
1 1/4 c. maple syrup
1/2 c. buttermilk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a bowl, combine dry ingredients. In a separate mixing bowl, cream the brown sugar & butter. In another small bowl, combine eggs, syrup, vanilla and buttermilk. Alternate adding a portion of the dry ingredients and a portion of the wet ingredients until combined.

In a cupcake pan, fill cupcake cups a little over 3/4 full. Place cupcakes in the oven for approx. 15-20 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Gently remove cakes from the pan and set aside on a wire rack until cool.

Espresso Buttercream

1/3 c. butter
3 c. powdered sugar
2 T. espresso syrup*
1-2 T. milk

Place all ingredients in a mixing bowl. With an electric mixer, beat on medium speed until the frosting is the desired consistency. Transfer to piping bag and put in refrigerator until ready to pipe the cupcakes!

To make espresso syrup:
Method 1: Combine a double shot of espresso & 1/4 c. brown sugar in a sauce pan. Heat over medium-low until the sugar dissolves.
Method 2: Combine 1/2 c. strong coffee & 1/4 c brown sugar in a sauce pan. Heat over medium-low heat for approximately 10 minutes, until some of the liquid dissolves and the sauce thickens.
**For extra flavor in this buttercream, I added a little spoonful of molasses to the syrup while it was heating!

Now you might be thinking,’wowza wow wowza there is way to many sweet ingredients in these little cakes!’ And honestly, I was worried about it too, but it’s fine. They are just lovely!

Pipe the frosting on the cupcakes and garnish with candied pecans!*

*To candy pecans, simple put one cup of pecans in small saute pan with 1/4 c. maple syrup. Saute over medium heat until the liquid from the syrup has evaporated and the pecans are sticky. They harden as they cool 🙂



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