I am the type of person that a grocery store owner loves.
The impulse shopper!
The longer I stand around in the grocery store, the more I buy. It doesn't matter if I have a list or not, I always seem to buy something that I don't need.
The worst offense is those small little cookbooks at the checkout stand. It used to always be the Pillsbury one but I have since bought a subscription. Now I am working on the Betty Crocker one.
I picked out the latest one for Fall Baking a couple of weeks ago and ended up making the Toasted Almond Cupcakes with Caramel Frosting for the market.
I have posted the recipe below and would love to know your thoughts and comments.
I loved, loved, loved the Caramel Frosting. So delicious, tasty and easy! I will definetly be making this again. I wasn't completely, hopelessly, madly in love with the cupcake though. They were good, they just didn't knock my socks off. The icing was what made the whole ensemble.
Perhaps it was my mistake.
The recipe as you can see calls for toasting a cup of the almonds and then grinding in the food processor to get a fine ground almond. I already had ground almonds in the cupboard so I decided to use this instead.
Now I know that 1 cup of whole almonds is way less when it's all ground down. I searched for a comparison but couldn't find one so I ended up using 1/2 cup of my ground almonds. I think in the long run it still ended up being too much. The cupcakes were a little dry, not because of the cake mix but because of the texture of the ground almonds. Not too much but just a little.
But still, they were a good seller and I would make these ones again! A really great Fall cupcake!
Toasted Almond Cupcakes with Caramel Frosting
For the cupcakes:
1 1/2 cups sliced almonds
1 box of Betty Crocker Super Moist White Cake Mix
1 1/4 cups water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspooon almond extract
Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a shallow pan, bake almonds 6 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden brown. Cool 15 minutes. Reserve 1 cup almonds for garnish. In food processor, process remaining almonds until finely ground.
In large bowl, beat cake mix, water, oil, almond extract and eggs on low speed for 30 seconds. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. (Batter will be lumpy). Fold in ground almonds. Divide batter evenly among muffin cups.
Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes. Remove from pan to cooling rack. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.
For the Caramel Frosting:
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup milk
2 cups powdered sugar
In a 2 qt. saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in brown sugar. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to low; boil and stir 2 minutes. Stir in milk. Heat to boiling. Remove from heat. Cool to lukewarm, about 30 minutes.
Gradually stir powdered sugar into brown sugar mixture. Place saucepan of frosting in bowl of cold water. Beat with a spoon until smooth and spreadable. If frosting becomes too stiff, stir in additional milk, 1 teaspoon at a time. Frost a few cupcakes at a time with 1 tablespoon of frosting each; press reserved almonds lightly into frosting. Store loosely covered at room temperature.