It all started when I wanted to bake something to celebrate Autumn’s arrival. Around this time of the year, the bakers and the weekend-bakers bring out the big guns to prepare delicious cakes, cupcakes, and cookies with all the pumpkin and spooky themes. Some are pieces of art but, for the common human being, I wanted to do something simple that could give also a nice visual impact. Since around this time pumpkin is the king, I bought a butternut squash. They make delicious soups, roasts and much more, although I wasn’t feeling to do something savoury with it. I wanted to make muffins!
After hours and hours of jumping from one recipe to another, I finally found the one I wanted to make. It was easy, just putting everything together, mixed up and ready to go to the oven. Now, this is my type of recipe! Although since I’ve seen so many different recipes and with different ingredients, I ended up changing a couple of them of the original. The buttercream happened about the same way. I saw many ways but wanted to keep everything simple. I’m not a great baker so for this one time I just needed straightforward simple recipes.
The original muffins recipe is from Jamie Oliver but you can find it on Food Network and the buttercream one is this. Both are delicious! Although without realising I’m making them my own while changing a bit here and there. Before I forget to tell you. This recipe serves 12 muffins but my mixture got up to 19 and probably has something to do with the size of my tin.
For the cupcakes:
400g roasted Butternut Squash
500g or 2 1/4 cups of Brown Sugar
320g or 2 1/2 cups of All-purpose Flour
2 tsp ground Cinamon
1 tsp ground Nutmeg
170ml or 3/4 cup of Olive Oil
2 tbsp of grated Ginger
For roasting the Squash, I just put it in the oven at 200º and would occasionally poke it with a knife to see if it was soft on the inside. Probably there are more accurate methods as well as timed ones but I just wanted to cook my pumpkin so wasn’t paying much attention to the time. Although on the original recipe you don’t have to roast it.
Step 1. Preheat the oven to 180º and line your muffin tins with paper cups.
Step 2. Roughly chop your squash and whiz it in a food processor until it becomes a puree. Then add in the sugar, the 4 eggs, a pinch of salt, the flour, the ginger, the lemon zest, the cinnamon, the nutmeg, and the olive oil. Whiz everything together until it’s all combined.
Step 3. Fill in the paper cups with the mixture and bake in the oven for about 20 to 25 minutes. Although it’s best to stick a wooden skewer or a knife, if it comes out clean they are done.
Step 4. Take them out of the muffin tin so they can cold down before adding the buttercream.
For the Buttercream:
300g or 1 1/3 cup of Butter at room temperature
120g or 1 cup of powdered Sugar
4 tbsp of Orange juice
Food colouring (orange)
Step 1. Start by beating in the butter while adding the sugar slowly.
Step 2. Add the orange juice and beat until combined
Step 3. Take about 1 tbsp of the buttercream to a separate bowl and add to the remaining a bit of food colouring. Beat in again until combined.
Step 4. Take about 1/3 of the buttercream to another bowl and add to the remaining more food colouring. Beat in until it completely changed the color of the butter.
Step 5. Add each buttercream to separate piping bags. I didn’t use any nozzle but if you want to choose a large round tip. Start decorating your muffin with the darkest colour. Circle all the way around and bring to the center until the surface is covered.
Step 6. Then go in with the next colour but this time start closer to the center. You want as well to cover the surface.
Step 7. Finally had the lighter colour, the one that didn’t get any food colouring, and do a little circle in the center. Finish it off with a pick. Now just repeat the same to the other muffins. I found it easier to do each colour on all at once so you don’t have to keep changing between piping bags.
As I was making the buttercream the food colouring wasn’t working as I wanted to. So instead of telling you to imagine how there were supposed to look, I had an idea. Why not drawing it? So this is the story of this little illustration that I for sure thought it wasn’t going to turn out good. But I’m really happy with it.
Although the final result doesn’t match my expectations, they taste delicious. So you can imagine all of them disappeared in less than 2 days! For my family that is a goal. Guess I might go shopping to bake more.