Sunday, October 9, 2011

Pumpkin Spice Latte Cupcakes

Ahhh, autumn!  What a glorious season.  The crisp air.  The golden & rust colored leaves.  A time to pull out your cute boots and....caps?  What would be another cute article of clothing that would surface in the fall?
You see, it's been 15 years since I've had the pleasure of donning any cool weather clothes.  No season changes for me.  I live on an island smack dab in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.  Hawai'i.  Actually, Oahu to be exact.    I know some of you might have a difficult time feeling sorry for me.  I live here.

Well, my husband works here & this is where we have all of our family gatherings, but you get the idea.
So while I'm sure you won't be crying me a river any time soon, surely you can appreciate my nostalgia for fall & spring.
It doesn't help that all of the blogs that I frequent are practically bragging to me about their recent trips to the apple orchard.  How they taunt me with their stories of football games, hay rides, blah, blah, blah.  Bitter?  Maybe just a tad.
So, I bake.  I make fall-themed items.  Frito pie, pumpkin cookies, chili.  Anything that conjures up images from my childhood.
These cupcakes are the perfect homage to autumn-a moist pumpkin cake brushed with coffee & topped with the yummiest homemade whipped cream dusted with cinnamon.
 I sit here at my desk with my coffee.  I eat one & imagine that it is twilight & I can hear the high school marching band playing in the distance.  The air is cool and the wind howls.
Ok, that'll have to do for now.
I feel chilly and my thermometer confirms that it's a cool 66 degrees.  Time to break out the sweat pants.

Yield: about 2 dozen cupcakes
For the cupcakes:
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
3 tbsp. espresso powder
2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp. grated nutmeg
1/8 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. salt
1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin puree
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup canola or vegetable oil
4 large eggs
½ cup coffee or espresso, for brushing
For the whipped cream:
2¼ cups heavy cream, chilled
¼ cup confectioners’ sugar
For garnish:
Ground cinnamon
Caramel sauce(for me, this was more for presentation as it did not add much to the overall flavor).

To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350°F.  Line cupcake pans with paper liners.  In a medium bowl, combine the flour, espresso powder, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and salt.  Stir together and set aside.  In the bowl of an electric mixer, blend together the pumpkin, granulated sugar, brown sugar and oil. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.  With the mixture on low speed, add the flour mixture in two additions, mixing just until incorporated.
Fill the cupcake liners about three-quarters full.  Bake until the cupcakes are golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 18-20 minutes.  Transfer the pans to a wire rack and let cool for 10 minutes, then remove the cupcakes from the pans.  While the cupcakes are still warm, brush them two or three times with the coffee or espresso, allowing the first coat to soak in before repeating.  Let cool completely.
To make the frosting, place the heavy cream in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.  Whip on medium-low speed at first, gradually increasing to high speed.  Blend in the confectioners’ sugar gradually.  Whip until stiff peaks form, being careful not to over-beat.  Use a pastry bag fitted with a decorative tip to frost the cooled cupcakes.  Sprinkle with ground cinnamon and drizzle with caramel sauce.  Store in an airtight container and refrigerate.
Source: cake adapted from Williams Sonoma
Source:  Annie's Eats


  1. Love n miss you I'll bring you some fall when I come. As always they look delish yum. Can't wait to try some of your baking.

  2. These are so cute and I love your presentation! Great recipe! Love your blog and so glad to be a new follower! xoxo