Monday, July 18, 2011

~Caramelized Banana Blueberry Cupcakes~


One word that would describe these would probably be....cupcakelicious...everything about these is delicious. Banana cupcake is decadently moist and you can really taste the banana!
I was torn when it came to deciding on the frosting flavor; I went with my instincts : banana and blueberry make a perfect marriage in the yogurts, parfaits, and other frozen or baked goods so I decided on blueberry mousse.Can I just tell you that this combo really blew me away, it's like they both have been secretly in love and finally they said " I DO". You don't need much to enjoy these as they are good just like that , but  I thought they needed a little garnish and since on my FB page many of you suggested caramel I added a slice of  cooled caramelized banana with a piece of caramel candy I made.
You could easily make this into a 9 inch cake if you'd like.
You can start working on the blueberry mousse frosting day or two before.I prepared my fruit puree during the week and had it in the fridge until I was ready to use it, just make sure you bring the puree to room temperature before using.

Caramelized Banana Cupcakes 
(about 16-18 standard size cupcakes)
125 grams/4oz/ room temperature butter
175/6oz/ granulated sugar
2eggs
2tbl boiling milk
1tsp baking soda
225grams/8oz/ all purpose flour
1tsp baking powder
Banana Puree from 4 Caramelized Bananas :
4 large bananas
1tbl brown sugar
1tbl butter

oven at 180C/350F/
line muffin pan with liners

Prepare Banana Puree
in the skillet heat butter and brown sugar, add sliced banana and cook on medium heat until caramelized, this will take several minutes, once done, remove from heat and mash with a fork, let cool to room temperature.

Making Cupcake Batter
Sift flour and baking powder in a medium bowl.Set aside.
 In a mixer beat butter and sugar, until light and fluffy add eggs, one at a time, beat until smooth, add cooled mashed banana, mix just until combined. Add baking soda that you dissolved in 2tbl boiling milk, mix until incorporated. Gradually add flour mixture.
Spoon Batter into the prepared muffin pan, bake for about 18-20 minutes, they should be very lightly brown on the top, check with the toothpick as well.
Cool on the cooling rack

Blueberry Mousse Frosting
3 cups blueberries
1/2 cup honey or sugar
3 cups heavy cream
3tbl sugar or to taste
1 1/2 tbl unflavored gelatin
3tbl heavy cream

Make Fruit Puree
Cook Blueberries and sugar until soft, puree fruit in food processor or blender, press through a fine mesh strainer, reserve puree and store in the fridge until ready to use.Bring to room temperature when ready to use-important

Gelatin
Using a small dish or a cup, bloom gelatin in the heavy cream  for about 5 minutes, then either place it over a simmering water and stir until dissolved, or I use microwave, 1/2power setting for 5-10 seconds, until dissolved, but watch it carefully so it doesn't boil or gets very hot.
Let cool slightly until ready to use.

 Heavy Cream and Folding
Beat heavy whipping cream until stiff peaks are formed add 3tbl sugar.
Add gelatin to room temperature  fruit puree and fold in.
Add about 1/3 whipped heavy cream into the puree and fold in, continue with remaining heavy cream, don't stir, fold the mixture until it comes together and no streaks are visible.
Fit the pastry bag with large round piping nozzle, fill the bag with mousse filling and frost the cupcakes. Place the cupcakes into the fridge into an airtight container, at least for several hours or overnight, this helps mousse to set, as well as flavors get more vibrant. 

Garnish
You can enjoy cupcakes as they are or if you'd like to add a little garnish I suggest using cooled slices of caramelized banana, and if you feel extra ambitious add caramel candy on the top

Caramelized Banana Slices  (for 18 cupcakes)
2 bananas, sliced into about 1/2-1 inch slices
1tbl brown sugar
1tbl butter
Melt butter and brown sugar on the skillet, place slices into the skilled and cook on medium high, for several minute, gently turn the slices and cook on another side. Once done, let cool completely before using as garnish for your cupcakes

Caramel Candy
1/2cup+1tbl white granulated sugar
2 tbl corn syrup
2tbl water

Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, using a piece of paper towel that you dipped in vegetable oil, oil the aluminum foil, you need a very thin layer, you don't want oil to be forming puddles. Set aside
Cook in until sugar is dissolved, bring to boil, turn the heat to medium to low, continue cooking, mixture will be boiling,  brush the sides of the pan water to prevent sugar crystallizing. Cook until temperature reaches 300-310F(148-154C) Remove from heat and pour the mixture into a heat proof dish, I used tempered glass bowl.Be very very careful this mixture is extremely hot, do not touch with bare hands
Using a spoon or a fork, dip the utensil into the hot caramel and go zic zac across the prepared aluminum foil, go with your imagination. Repeat until you have no caramel left. Let the caramel harden.
Using both hands gently flip aluminum foil onto a greased cutting board, gently tearing the aluminum foil peel the foil leaving the hard candy on the cutting board. Discard aluminum foil. Using knife chop the candy into desired size and decorate your cupcakes. Caramel can be stored in a container up to one day, it will get very sticky once exposed to humidity.


Aren't they pretty?
~♥~
Linking to Tidy Mom 

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