This is my first entry in the Iron Cupcake Earth competition. The ingredient was basil, which I love. I really love basil pesto, so I created a recipe using pesto, in the middle of the cupcake. I hope everyone loves it like I do!
I've seen a recipe for pesto cupcakes before, and there was NO pesto in the cupcake at all; just a little bit in the topping. I did not make a cream cheese topping, though I think that would be good. This cupcake really didn't need much on top.
I tried 3 different things: Parmesan Cheese on top, a dab of pesto on top, and nothing at all on top. I think the cheese tasted the best, and the pesto looked the best.
The muffins turned out delicious, but needed a tad more salt. I originally only added a scant quarter teaspoon since the Parmesan is a little salty. I adjusted the recipe here to 1/2 teaspoon, which should be just right.
I would recommend this recipe to anyone who loves pesto and or basil like I do!
For the pesto:
1 cup basil, packed
1/2 cup almonds (I know, traditionally it's pine nuts, but try this)
1/3 cup olive oil
2 garlic cloves
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese (buy the good stuff, it makes a difference!)
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Process all of the above ingredients in a food processor, adding the oil last while the machine is still running. Once the sauce is completely mixed, it is done.
For the cupcake:
Preheat oven to 350
combine and set aside:
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 1/4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
In a separate bowl:
6 tablespoons butter, softened
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
Mix the eggs and butter with an electric beater or stand mixer until well combined. Add the dry ingredients, and mix just until incorporated. Add the buttermilk last, and just mix until slightly fluffy, don't over mix.
I used a large scoop and only filled it about 3/4 of the way for the bottom. On top of that, I added a small scoop of pesto (enough to go all the way across the surface of the cupcake). Then I added another scoop of batter to cover the top. I baked the muffins for 15 minutes and then added the cheese. I returned them to the oven for another 5 minutes, and they were done. They turned out very moist and delicious!
Here is the link where you can place your vote:
And here are the prizes I'm competing for:
ETSY artist METAL SUGAR, her link is:
as well as to our corporate sponsors HEAD CHEFS by FIESTA PRODUCTS
HELLO CUPCAKE by Karen Tack and Alan Richardson, http://blog.hellocupcakebook.
JESSIE STEELE APRONS http://www.jessiesteele.com
CUPCAKE COURIER http://www.cupcakecourier.com and
TASTE OF HOME http://www.tasteofhome.com