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berry berry happiness

following our visit to the Little Italy Mercato, I asked my best friend Ivy, a talented and resourceful pastry chef to recreate the fabulous cupcakes that she had baked last year for my bridal shower, and she so gracefully did so…  these cupcakes are every bite the perfect concoction for my taste buds, buttery but airy, sweet but a touch tangy, all whipped up to a delightful beauty.  Enjoy!


Berry Shortcake Cupcakes

2/3 cup whole milk
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 large eggs
1 1/3 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
Make the cupcakes.  Position a rack in the middle of the oven.  Preheat the oven to 350 F.  Line 12 extra-large muffin tin cups with large paper liners.  Spray the paper liners with nonstick cooking spray.

Heat the milk in a medium saucepan over low heat just until it is hot; it should measure about 150 F on a thermometer.  Remove from the heat.

Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl and set aside.  In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the eggs and sugar until thickened and lightened to a cream color, about 3 minutes.  Stop the mixer and scrape the sides of the bowl as needed during mixing.  Mix in the vanilla and almond extracts.  On low speed, mix in the flour mixture until it is incorporated.  Slowly add the hot milk and continue mixing for about 30 seconds, until the batter is smooth, the batter will be thin.

Fill each paper liner with a scant 1/2 cup of batter, to about 5/8 inch below the top of the liner.  Bake just until the tops feel firm and a toothpick comes out clean.