Many moons ago, there was this cake.
I made it for my high school graduation party (because that’s normal) and every time I think of it, I laugh.
I laugh because of Laura. Laura is my best friend of 27 years and also my proof editor for this blog. I was going to say ‘editor at large’ but she’d kill me if I used the word large and her name in the same sentence! She volunteered herself for this position, and has become quite obsessed with my
over usage placement of commas, ( ), and … ‘s. She was an English major, you can’t blame her.
So, what’s so funny about Laura and the cake?
It ended up in my face! Yeah, that’s right- graduation cake in the face. While her mouth was full, she tried to tell me that it was ‘sooooo moist’ but instead, spewed cake crumbs with military precision all over the place, into my eyes and everything. It didn’t help that I was only inches away from her. We laughed hysterically. You had to be there.
It just so happens that the texture of these cupcakes reminds me of my graduation cake. They’re super moist and fluffy, just like back in the day. My grandmother taught me that cornstarch (and sifting no less than 3 times) is the secret. I used to use cake flour to achieve the same effect, but when I found out that it was bleached I freaked out and never used it again. Bleach is for laundry, thank you very much. Cornstarch works just fine.
If cupcakes are not your thing, this recipe makes a beautiful cake too (see recipe notes). You can even change up the fruit toppings as well- let your imagination run wild.
- To achieve light and fluffy cupcakes, make sure to sift all of the dry ingredients no less than 3 times, 5 times is best. Also, using small apples for this recipe will ensure that the slices will fit snugly into the cupcake molds. I bought my tulip baking cups here.
- 1½ c. flour (2 tbsp. removed)
- 2 tbsp. cornstarch
- 1½ tsp. baking powder
- pinch of salt
- 1 stick of unsalted butter (8 tbsp.) softened
- ¾ c. sugar
- 2 eggs
- ½ tsp. vanilla
- ¾ c. buttermilk
- 1 c. blueberries (fresh or frozen)
- 2 small red apples (unpeeled), thinly sliced
- 2 tbsp. sanding sugar
- Preheat your oven to 350 F. Line a muffin tin with baking cups.
- Measure out 1½ c. of flour, making sure to remove 2 tablespoons.
- In a large bowl combine all of the dry ingredients. Sift no less than 3 times, 5 times for best results! Set aside.
- In an electric stand mixer, add the softened butter and sugar. Cream together until light and fluffy, about 1-2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Add the eggs, 1 at a time and beat until well incorporated.
- Add the vanilla.
- Working in batches, and the buttermilk and dry ingredients. Mix until incorporated.
- Fill each baking cup about ⅔ full. Top with blueberries and about 3 apple slices, tucking them gently into the batter.
- Sprinkle with sanding sugar.
- Bake in the center of the oven for about 25- 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted.
- Transfer to a wire rack to cool.