February 09, 2009

Tangerine Cupcakes

1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
3 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup milk, at room temperature
1/4 cup tangerine juice
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg yolk, at room temperature
zest of 1 tangerine

tangerine frosting and candied tangerine slices

Preheat oven to 350. Line or grease and flour 6 wells in a cupcake pan. In a large bowl, cream the butter, zest and sugar. Add the egg, mix thoroughly. Add flour, baking powder and salt to the butter mixture. Add the milk and juice to the rest of the batter and beat until well combined. Fill each well 2/3 of the way full.

Bake 12-15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted the center of a cupcake comes out clean or with just one or two dry crumbs. Cool briefly in the pan, then remove cupcakes to wire racks to cool completely before icing with tangerine frosting and topping with a candied tangerine slice.

My thoughts:
This time of year tangerines are really at their peak. Juicy and sweet they make a great change from the usual oranges. They also adapt well to to baked goods. Tangerine juice is rather sweet but there is a touch of tartness there that really makes for a delicious, light tasting cupcake. As for the cake itself the crumb is tender and light and the zest provides little bursts of flavor in every bite. The perfect alternative to a chocolate dessert.