Champagne Cupcakes

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My very good friend asked me to make a mini-baked good for her bridal shower dessert table this past weekend.  Trying to think of what to make for a lunchtime bridal shower was a little tricky, since baking is not my strong suit.  My first thought was cake ball pops, they are so darned cute and always a hit at parties.  Upon further thought I decided they would be a bit too time consuming and probably wouldn’t look as I imagine them being.  Instead, I started looking for a cupcake recipe that involved champagne.  When I get together with this group of girlfriends we drink almost exclusively champagne, so why not eat it too?  I found a recipe on the food network website for champagne cupcakes and a separate recipe for champagne buttercream frosting…perfect!  When it comes to baking I know better than to make my own adjustments.  Especially when baking for a crowd, who cares about fat and calories.  For the frosting I did add some almond extract to give it a little extra pizzaz.  Be prepared, this recipe makes a LOT of cupcakes.  I ended up with 50 mini-cakes and 20 large cupcakes.  If you aren’t baking for a crowd you may want to half the recipe.

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I didn’t frost the extra cupcakes so they could sit out, I’m not comfortable letting the buttercream frosting sit out for too long.  To make them presentable for a fancy bridal shower I wanted to pipe the frosting.  I found a piping set at marshalls for $5 and got a mini-cupcake pan and liners to make these mini-sized.  They turned out great and so adorable with the Lego bride and groom topper (thank you to my brother and his beautiful wife in Denmark)!  Pop some bubbly and lets get baking!

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Cupcake Ingredients: 

4 cups all-purpose flour
3 cups sugar
5 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 2/3 cup of milk (I used almond milk since I forgot to pickup regular milk)
1 cup shortening
1/2 cup champagne
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
8 egg whites

Buttercream Frosting Ingredients:

1 pound of unsalted butter, room temperature
6 cups of powdered sugar
4 Tbsp of champagne
1/2 tsp almond extract

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  I made these in my KitchenAid standing mixer with the whisk attachment, otherwise you can use hand beaters to blend.

2. Add together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  Slowly add the milk, shortening, champagne, and vanilla extract, beat on medium speed for 30-60 seconds.  Add egg whites and continue to beat for 2 minutes.

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3. Line cupcake pan and fill half full with batter.  Bake for 12-14 minutes until center is springy when touched.  Let cool on cooling rack.

4. Make your frosting while cakes are cooling.  I made this in the KitchenAid standing mixer as well with the whisk attachment.

5. Whip butter in mixer on medium/high speed until creamy.  Start to add the powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time and mix in champagne/almond extract until you have the flavor and consistency you are looking for.  It should be smooth and creamy.  I didn’t add all 6 cups of sugar, I stopped around 5 so it wasn’t so sweet.

6. When cupcakes are cooled pipe the frosting on with the tip shape of your choosing.  I used the smaller star looking tip and piped in a circle starting at the outside working toward the center.  They look pretty fancy to me!

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Enjoy!

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