Pipe Dream #22: To Make Uncrusty Frostings – Maple Pecan Cupcakes

I worked at Pier One Imports for a year in high school. Ah, Pier One. Those were happy days. I got to spend my time organizing glass into straight rows and chatting up customers about whether the Patchouli reed diffuser was too 1995 for their new home. In all cases, it was too 1995, but some people still bought them. It was a great job to have at that stage in life. I learned a little about interior decorating, a lot about sales and perhaps too much about the importance of being careful with box cutters…nostalg over.

I think my romance with cupcakes began there. I used to look through the above book when I was supposed to be dusting when I was on break. It is full of beautiful photos and interesting flavor ideas for cupcakes. I was inspired.

These are my 2009 interpretation of the pistachio cupcakes on the cover. And by “interpretation” I mean “attempt to copy exactly.” That failed, obviously. But they are still cute, methinks.

Psych! I’m not going to give you the pistachio cake recipe; these cakes are like the Woman Folly– enticing on the surface, but full of noise and ignorance on the inside. Or in this case, a crusty royal icing on the outside and a dry crumb on the inside. Not what you want to be making.

When I first started baking cupcakes, this one was my favorite. It rully were.  The sugar is half replaced by maple syrup, making for the most moisty, buttery cupcake you ever did see. And there are pecans. Have I ever told you about me and pecans? Ok. Sometime I will. And then you will know.

The frosting is an old-fashioned buttercream that leaves something to be desired–it gets crusty pretty quick. But that doesn’t usually matter in my case. Ahem. I can’t even make these anymore because they get eaten too quickly. Plus, I’m trying to get away from crusty frostings. If you were really cool (me, not), you could caramelize 12 pecans to decorate with, but I didn’t want to fuss. We all know I’ve only made good caramel once.

Please enjoy these in my name,


Maple and Pecan Cupcakes

Adapted from Cupcakes by Susannah Blake

For the cupcakes:

1 stick butter, at room temperature

1/4 cup packed brown sugar

2/3 cup pure maple syrup

2 eggs

1 cup self-rising flour

1/2 cup pecans, roughly chopped

For the frosting:

3 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoons pure maple syrup

1 1/4 cups powdered sugar

Preheat the oven to 350° F and line a muffin pan with paper liners.

Beat the butter and sugar together in a bowl until creamy, then beat in the maple syrup. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then dump in the flour and fold in. Fold in the nuts and spoon the mixture into muffin cups. Bake for about 17 minutes until risen and golden and a skewer in the center comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

For the frosting, beat the butter, maple syrup and powdered sugar together until pale and fluffy. Spread the mixture over the cupcakes and top with a pecan, or a caramelized one.


1 Response to “Pipe Dream #22: To Make Uncrusty Frostings – Maple Pecan Cupcakes”

  1. 1 Pipe Dream #237: To Sign Off – Maple Pecan Cupcakes with Brown Butter Frosting | piping dreams Trackback on December 2, 2013 at 9:02 am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 1,944 other followers

Lane Cake

Chocolate Clementine Marquise

Spicy Chai Biscotti

Red Wine Pear Trifles

Coconut Oat Chocolate Chip Cookies

Peach Cobbler

Clementine Ginger Tequila Sunrise

S’mores Cake with Malted PB Frosting

Lemon Mousse Crepe Cake

Strawberry Shortcake

Nectarine Brown Butter Upside Down Cake

Raspberry Espresso Fudge Cake

Cherry Clafoutis

Fluffy Buttermilk Biscuits

Banoffee Pie

Blueberry Bourbon Bread Pudding

Pink Sprinkle Cupcakes

Grapefruit Yogurt Loaf

No-Bake Nests

Butter Pecan Shortbread

Black Garlic Herb Bread

Pumpkin Chiffon Torte

Maple Pecan Brown Butter Cupcakes


%d bloggers like this: