By Food & Wine
F&W's Grace Parisi creates maximum strawberry flavor by mixing jam into the fluffy frosting of this riff on a classic strawberry shortcake. More Brilliant Cupcakes
© Kana Okada Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup milk, at room temperature
FROSTING AND TOPPING
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
2 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
2 tablespoons milk or heavy cream
1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper or foil liners.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour with the cornstarch, baking powder and salt.
3. In a large bowl, using a handheld electric mixer, beat the sugar with the eggs and vanilla extract at medium-high speed until smooth and thickened slightly, about 3 minutes. Add the butter and oil and beat until incorporated, scraping the bottom and side of the bowl. Add the dry ingredients and milk in 3 alternating batches, beating well between additions. Carefully pour the batter into the lined muffin tins, filling them about two-thirds full.
4. Bake the cupcakes in the center of the oven for 20 to 23 minutes, until springy and a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Let the cupcakes cool slightly in the muffin tin, then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.
5. In a medium bowl, using a handheld electric mixer, beat the softened butter at medium speed until smooth. Add the confectioners' sugar, vanilla extract and salt and beat the mixture at low speed just until combined. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat until smooth. Add the milk or heavy cream and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
6. Mix the frosting with strawberry jam to taste. Spread the frosting on the cooled cupcakes and serve.
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SUPPER CLUB PICK
My after-school snack was a sacred ritual. I sat on the carpet in my parents' bedroom at a low table, the television turned to "I Dream of Jeannie," and ate a peanut butter and honey sandwich cut into neat squares. I wasn't fussy about crusts. I just loved the sticky pairing of creamy peanut butter with syrupy golden sweetness drizzled from a honey bear in diagonals across the soft white bread. Nothing else--save for maybe apples and peanut butter in a pinch--could have made for as sweet an