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Neopolitan Buttermilk Cupcakes

I look forward to blogging events. It’s like going to a party where everyone has a little present for everyone else. Of course, this is because I, like so many other food bloggers, love food. Once a theme is anounced, I start brainstorming what I’ll make. Cupcakes (or muffins) were a great choice by Maki. They’re already like little presents.

Ok, enough with the present analogy.

For this month’s Is My Blog Burning, hosted by i was just really very hungry, I was pleasantly surprised to see the theme because I can always use an excuse to make dessert. Cupcakes aren’t something that I make often because usually I want the whole cake. But you have to love single serving foods sometimes.

Cupcakes seem a little less serious than full-sized cakes, so I had a difficult time narrowing down my ideas. Mainly, I wanted something that looked fun… oh, and taste good, too! I started with a cake from a Cooking Light recipe I had lying around, made it plain and then remade it. Into what? Neopolitan buttermilk cupcakes.

The final product was very moist and had a nice, subtle buttermilk-vanilla flavor. I think the moistness keeps them from getting over mixed when you mix in the strawberry and chocolate flavors, since I didn’t detect any toughness at all. In fact, they had a very soft crumb. No egg yolks were used, since I wanted to keep the pink-white-brown color distinction clear. I used a cream cheese frosting, which is always a hit, but I think they would be great with a whipped cream frosting, too. I liked these a lot as a straightforward tasting, but fun looking cupcake. I’m also sure that these would do marvelously well at a bake sale.

Neopolitan Buttermilk Cupcakes

1 1/3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
5/6 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
2 egg whites
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup buttermilk
1 tbsp strawberry jam
red food coloring
1 tbsp cocoa powder

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 12 cup muffin tin, or line one with 12 paper liners.
Sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
Cream together sugar and butter. Mix in egg whites and vanilla and beat throughly.
Add flour to egg mixture, alternating with buttermilk, in two or three additions.
Divide batter into 3 bowls.
Add jam and one or two drops of food coloring to one bowl. Mix.
Add cocoa powder to another bowl. Mix.
Scrape each batter into a piping bag (or a plastic bag with the corner cut off).
Pipe one layer of each batter into cupcake tins.
Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until tester comes out clean.
Makes 12 cupcakes. Cool on wire rack completely before frosting.
Store covered at room temperature.

Cream Cheese Frosting
6 oz cream cheese, softened
1 tbsp butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2-2 cups confectioners sugar

Mix cream cheese, butter and vanilla. Add in confectioners sugar slowly until thick consistence is reached.
You can use reduced fat or fat free cream cheese for the frosting, if desired.

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  • Zarah Maria
    March 24, 2005

    They look gooood Nic! I usually love any cake with buttermilk in it, makes everything just a tad moister or something.. Mmm, my keyboard will most certainly be ruined by all the nice things up for this IMBB!

  • Melissa
    March 24, 2005

    Hi Nic……love the look of your facelift! Clean, bright. As far as the Neopolitian ‘cakes’ go…they remind me of when I was a kid, ice cream! Yum!

  • Fatemeh Khatibloo-McClure
    March 24, 2005

    Holy cow – these are freaking beautiful.

    {sigh} I wish I could bake like that.

    BTW – beautiful site! I haven’t been here before, and found you through Meathenge.

  • Daffy
    March 24, 2005

    oh my gosh, they look so delicate!
    It looks like you somehow managed to create a cupcake that’s encased! woah, i wanna try this recipe one day..
    like ur new blog look by the way! =)

  • Emily
    March 24, 2005

    i’ve heard of chocolate cupcakes. i’ve heard of vanilla cupcakes. but both of those combined WITh strawberry to make neapolitan cupcakes?!? that amazes me. 🙂 they look splendid! and the fact that they come from cooking light eases the guilt a little of wanting to make more cupcakes right now and eating them!

  • Jessica
    March 24, 2005

    Whoa, what even layers! But if I had these, I’d probably go straight to the chocolate layer. 🙂 Kind of reminds me of The Simpsons, where Homer sees a tub of Neopolitan ice cream and goes, “Mmm…chocolate.” Then he opens it up and goes “Doh!” because all the chocolate was scooped out, and full portions of vanilla and strawberry remain.

  • Nic
    March 25, 2005

    Zarah – I agree! When I see the round-up, I’m sure to be drooling all over my screen.
    Melissa – I’m glad you like the new look.
    Fatemah – Thanks, I’m glad you’re visiting.
    Daffy – Glad you like it! One of the endearing things about cupcakes is that they look so small and delicate just sitting there, unlike their full-sized counterparts.
    Emily – I was really pleased with the way they looked when I cut them open. You can see how they cook from the outside, in. Neat, huh?
    Jessica – I saw that episode, too! I was definately the kid who ate the strawberry first, though.

  • Alice
    March 25, 2005

    Those look awesome! What a fun concept…I’d never have imagined Neapolitan cupcakes without seeing them! I will make note of this and I hope to get around to trying them soon!

  • Cathy
    March 26, 2005

    Nic – what a great idea! They’re so pretty and I’ll bet they’re delicious too.

  • Nic
    March 27, 2005

    Alice – What would a cupcake be if not cute!
    Cathy – They’re really moist with a lot of buttermilk flavor and subtle chocolate and strawberry flavors. You could probably boost them with extracts, but I don’t think you should have too many flavors happening in something so small.

  • chronicler
    March 30, 2005

    Nic, I was too busy to take a look until today. But wow! these look fabulous! I will be baking these soon!

  • Pippy
    June 6, 2005

    Hey, these Neapolitan cakes are perfect! My boyfriend and i have a longstanding bet that Neapolitan is pink-white-and-brown (he says orange-pink-and-green). So each week since the bet has started i have either sent him a dictionary definition, or a Google picture (which was how i found you), proving that i’m right. Last week i baked Neapolitan cookies. This week, it’ll be your cupcakes!

  • Nic
    June 7, 2005

    I’m glad you won the bet, Pippy. I hope your boyfriend will appreciate these.

  • Alice
    June 15, 2006

    Oohh these are awesome. I just made a batch and they’re so good 😀 really yummy and very pretty. Thanks a lot for sharing the recipe!

  • Erica
    April 15, 2008

    Please help! I want to make these cupcakes for my little girl, but how much is 5/6 C. I have never seen this before.

  • Megan
    September 11, 2010

    same problem as Erica, what is 5/6 cup???

  • Megan
    September 11, 2010

    ok based on your vanilla buttermilk cupcake recipe, im gonna go with 1cup of sugar…i hope this works

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