COOKIES & CREAM CUPCAKES
One of the most child-friendly recipes in one of my previous books, Chocolate from the Cake Mix Doctor, is the Cookies and Cream Cake, a white cake loaded with crushed Oreos. Once the cake is slathered with whipped cream frosting, more crushed Oreos are added. Here it is, in much the same spirit, but with a twist. In addition to the crushed Oreos in the batter, there is also half an Oreo in the bottom of each cupcake. Indulgence? You bet. Overkill? Never!
Makes 22 to 24 cupcakes (2 1/2 inches each)
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Baking time: 18 to 20 minutes
Assembly time: 10 minutes
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For the Cupcakes
24 paper liners for cupcake pans (2 1/2-inch size)
30 Oreo cookies
1 package (18.25 ounces) plain white cake mix
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the Buttercream Frosting
8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
3 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
3 to 4 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350° F.
Line 24 cupcake cups with paper liners. Set the pan aside.
Count out 12 Oreos and separate the top and bottom wafers.
Make sure each has some icing on it. Place one wafer, icing side up, in the bottom of each paper liner.
Set them aside. Place the remaining 18 Oreos between sheets of waxed paper or in a large, closed
zipper-lock bag and crush them by rolling over them with a rolling pin. Set these crumbs aside.
Place the cake mix, sour cream, oil, eggs, and vanilla
in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds. Stop the machine and
scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat
1 1/2 minutes more, scraping down the sides again if needed. Measure out 1 1/2 cups of crushed Oreos
and fold these into the batter until well incorporated. Set aside the remaining crushed Oreos for garnish.
Spoon or scoop 1/3 cup batter into each lined cupcake cup, filling it three quarters of the way full.
(You will get between 22 and 24 cupcakes; remove the empty liners, if any.) Place the pans in the oven.
Bake the cupcakes until they are lightly golden and spring back when lightly pressed with your fingers, 18 to 20 minutes.
Remove the pans from the oven and place them on wire racks to cool for 5 minutes. Run a dinner knife around the edges of
the cupcake liners, lift the cupcakes up from the bottoms of the cups using the end of the knife, and pick them out of the
cups carefully with your fingertips. Place them on a wire rack to cool for 15 minutes before frosting.
Meanwhile, prepare the Buttercream Frosting.
Place a heaping tablespoon of frosting on each cupcake and swirl to spread it out with a short metal spatula or a spoon,
taking care to cover the tops completely. Sprinkle the reserved cookie crumbs over the tops, gently pressing them into
the frosting so that they stick. The cupcakes are now ready to serve.
For a slightly lighter color, use unsalted butter and beat it several minutes with the electric mixer to lighten it further
before adding the sugar.
Makes 3 cups, enough to frost 24 cupcakes (2 1/2-inch size) generously
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Place the butter in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed until fluffy, 30 seconds.
Stop the machine and add the confectioners' sugar, 3 tablespoons of the milk, and the vanilla.
Blend with the mixer on low speed until the sugar is incorporated, 1 minute.
Increase the speed to medium and beat until light and fluffy, 1 minute more.
Add up to 1 tablespoon more milk if the frosting seems too stiff.
Excerpted from CUPCAKES: FROM THE CAKE MIX DOCTOR copyright © 2005 Anne Byrn.
Reprinted with the permission of Workman Publishing Co., Inc. All Rights Reserved.