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Strawberry Filled Cupcakes

Summer brings sunshine, and berries, and long days of leisure, if you are a kid. Summer also brings yellow cupcakes filled with strawberries and topped with strawberry whippy cream frosting, if you have a summer birthday or know how to bake or have a Mimi who knows how to bake and loves you. Such is the fate of the grands.

The cake is moist and simple. It is a childhood classic that was sometimes filled and topped with chocolate and sometimes filled and topped with good old fashioned 7 Minute Frosting; a classic fluffy white frosting. I like to fill my yellow cakes with strawberry and top them with my own strawberry infused perfectly pipable whippy cream frosting.

To fill cupcakes cut a cone shaped hole in the top of each cupcake large enough to be filled with 1-2 teaspoons of filling. I like to save the cut-outs to make cake pops or crumble over trifles or other desserts. The grands? They like to eat them right away. I usually join them.

It takes a bit of time to mix the cake, the filling, and the frosting but each step is straightforward and simply done. I like to bake the cupcakes and make the filling the evening before and then pipe fresh shortly before serving. The whippy cream frosting, however, will hold its shape quite well so long as they are stored in the refrigerator.

Strawberry Filled Summer Yellow Cupcakes

1½ cups all-purpose flour

1 cup sugar

1½ teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

½ cup butter, room temperature

½ cup sour cream

1 large egg plus 2 large egg yolks

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Adjust oven rack to the middle position and preheat oven to 350°. Line 12 cup muffin tin with paper or foil cup liners.

Sift the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt into a medium sized bowl.

Fit a stand mixer with paddles and beat together the butter, sour cream, eggs, and extract until well blended.

Using a rubber spatula, fold the flour mixture into the butter and egg mixture until smooth and no flour pockets remain. Use a gentle hand to retain the tender crumb of the cake.

Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tins. Bake in preheated oven 20 -24 minutes or until the tops are pale gold and toothpick inserted into centers comes out clean.

Let cupcakes cool completely before filling.

After cupcakes are cool and shortly before filling cut out a small hole in the top of each cake big enough to hold 1-2 teaspoons of filling. Fill shortly before frosting.

Strawberry Filling

3¾ cups chopped fresh or frozen strawberries

¾ cup sugar

4 teaspoons cornstarch

In a small bowl whisk together the sugar and cornstarch until well mixed.

Place strawberries in medium sized saucepan. Stir in sugar and cornstarch mixture. Turn heat to medium low and crush strawberries and stir in sugar as the mixture comes to a gentle boil. Boil 2 minutes, stirring constantly. The mixture will thicken and will remain chunky.

Let cool completely before using to fill cupcakes and make Strawberry Whippy Cream Frosting.

Strawberry Whippy Cream Frosting

4 ounces cream cheese, softened

1½ cups powdered sugar

¾ cup cooled strawberry filling

2 cups heavy whipping cream, chilled

Fit a stand mixer with paddles and beat on low speed the cream cheese and powdered sugar until well blended, about 2 minutes. With a rubber spatula mix in the strawb­erry filling mixture. Set bowl aside.

Using a handmixer fitted with wire whips beat the heavy cream until soft peaks form. Gently add the cream cheese mixture and continue whipping until the cream forms stiff peaks and the mixture is pipable or spreading consistency.

I enjoy piping my cupcakes but this frosting may also be spread over the cupckes the good old fashioned way with a butter knife just like Granny did. Her cupcakes were yummy.

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