Mini Strawberry Cakes

Happy weekend!!! Hello from Lima-Peru again! I’ve been pretty busy the last couple of days dealing with the process of adapting my parents to the new caregiver (first ever) that will take care of dad, this is a big change for everyone at the house, not easy, but I’m working for this transition to be as simple as possible. I’m pretty tired but I feel a little bit better knowing that we have the help we need for dad to be in good condition.

Today, I took my mom to the mall. I know she hasn’t done much in the last couple of weeks because of my dad’s health, she really needed some time out of the house to do her own thing. It was good to be just with her plus she kept telling me how nice it was to be out of the house “to breath some air”.

My best friend came last night, we ordered pizza and talked for a couple of hours, it was nice to yack about random stuff that was not my parents situation. Tonight, I just wanted to be with my laptop, work on my blog and drink some coke. Tomorrow, I have stuff to do for my parents but I might go out for dinner with a couple of my college friends.

Of course, I miss my husband, dogs and home. Hopefully I’ll go back at the end of April.

Now, let’s talk about this recipe. I’m not really a fan of vanilla cake (I’m a chocolate cake person), BUT when I think of Spring/Summer cakes, vanilla and strawberry combo comes to my mind. This recipe is about mini angel food cakes topped with strawberry buttercream. The buttercream is made with freeze-dried strawberries (Trader Joe’s).

Let’s start with the recipe!

Ingredients

Yield about 12-14 mini cakes

For the mini cakes

3/4 cup white granulated sugar

1/2 cup cake flour

1/8 teaspoon salt

6 large egg whites, at room temperature

1 Tablespoon warm water

3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

1 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract (I used Molina vanilla)

For the strawberry buttercream

1 cup freeze-dried strawberries (I bought it at Trader Joe’s)

1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature

4 cups powdered sugar

3 Tablespoons heavy whipping cream

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

pinch of salt (optional)

Instructions

For the mini cakes

1.- Preheat oven to 325°F . Line a 12-cup muffin pan with cupcake liners. Set aside.

2.- In a blender, pulse the sugar until fine. From this, you’ll take 1/2 cup and set it aside. Add the cake flour and salt to the food processor. Pulse 8-10 times until mixture is light.

3.- In a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip egg whites, water, and cream of tartar together on low until foamy, about 2 minutes. Switch to medium-high and slowly add the 1/2 cup of sugar (the one we set aside). Whip until soft peaks form, about 6 minutes. Add the vanilla extract and mix just until incorporated.

4.- Using a fine-mesh strainer, slowly sift the flour mixture into the egg white mixture and fold after each addition (please, be very gentle when doing this). I added the flour in 4 rounds. Do not add the flour mixture all at once.

5.- Fill cupcake liners only 2/3 full. If you fill them more, the batter will spill and they won’t have a good rise.

6.-Bake the cupcakes until lightly browned around the edges and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 18-20 minutes.

7.- Allow the cupcakes to cool for about 10 minutes in the pan, then remove and place on a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.

For the strawberry buttercream

1.- Using a blender, mix the freeze-dried strawberries into a powdery texture. Set aside.

2.-In a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-high speed until creamy, about 4 minutes. Add powdered sugar, strawberry powder, cream, and vanilla. Beat on low speed for 30 seconds, then turn to high speed and beat for 3 minutes. If the frosting is too sweet, add a pinch of salt.

3.- Frost your cupcakes!

Enjoy!!


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