My Second Love
When I’m not writing or doing school work, I’m in the kitchen baking up sweet treats for my friends and family. My love of baking comes from being in the kitchen with my great-grandmother, Lucy. Every family gathering or holidays, I would go to her house and make a batch of cookies or a chocolate cake. Grandma would tie an apron around my waist and place a chef hat on my head. We would get flour all over the kitchen table and floor. I miss being in the kitchen with her, but I hold our memories, recipes, and cookie cutters closely to my heart. When grandma passed away, I became the baker of the family. Now, I make all the birthday cakes, and Christmas cookies and all the special treats for family get-togethers.
I don’t mind at all, I love baking, and my passion for it grew when I found out my bone disease is progressing. Baking and writing was something that I still knew how to do with everything changing in my life. Writing and baking was like my coping mechanisms and allowed me to escape from my reality. I am a massive fan of the Food Network, and I watch every baking show on there. Some of my favorite bakers are Buddy Valastro (The Cake Boss), Duff Goldman, Kimberly Bailey, Sherry Yard, and many others. Now that fall is upon us and Halloween is around the corner, I am looking forward to watching Halloween Baking Championship, and to be inspired to bake up sweet treats with the spices that remind us of fall. Warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and don’t forget the pumpkin. I don’t know about you, but when fall comes, I eat and drink everything with pumpkin spice—“Pumpkin spice and everything nice.” I want to share one of my favorite fall recipes from my kitchen to yours.
Stuffed Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes Recipe by Destiny Constantin
3/4 cup of salted butter, softened.
2 ½ cup of sugar.
3 large eggs.
15 ounces of Libby’s pumpkin puree.
2 1/3 cup of all-purpose flour (King Arthur is the best flour blend if you need Gluten free try King Arthur’s Gluten-Free Measure for Measure Flour).
1 tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice.
1 teaspoon of baking powder.
1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon.
½ teaspoon of baking soda.
½ teaspoon of ground ginger.
1 cup of buttermilk.
Pumpkin Pastry Cream Filling
6 ½ teaspoon of Libby’s Pumpkin Puree.
1 stick of salted butter.
8 tablespoons of shortening.
¼ cup of whole milk.
1 tablespoon of cinnamon.
1 tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice.
1 teaspoon of McCormick’s vanilla extract.
2 cups of Confectioner’s Sugar (Powdered Sugar).
Fall Cream Cheese Frosting
1 8oz. Package of cream cheese.
½ cup of salted butter.
4 cups of Confectioner’s Sugar (Powdered Sugar).
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract.
2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon.
2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice.
- Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 24 muffin cups, or line with paper muffin liners. Sift together the flour, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, ginger, baking powder, and baking soda; set aside.
- Beat 3/4 cup of butter, the white sugar with an electric mixer in a large bowl until light and fluffy. The mixture should be noticeably lighter in color. Add the room-temperature eggs one at a time, allowing each egg to blend into the butter mixture before adding the next. Stir in the milk and pumpkin puree after the last egg. Stir in the flour mixture, mixing until just incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared muffin cups.
- Bake in the preheated oven until golden and the tops spring back when lightly pressed, about 20 to 25 minutes. Cool in the pans for 5 minutes before removing to cool completely on a large platter.
- While the cupcakes are cooling, make the frosting by beating the cream cheese and ½ cup of butter with an electric mixer in a bowl until smooth. Beat in the confectioners’ sugar a little at a time until incorporated. Add the vanilla extract and 2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice; beat until fluffy. Cover the frosting with plastic wrap and set it in the refrigerator.
- While the frosting is in the refrigerator, make the filling by beating butter, shortening with an electric mixer in a bowl until smooth. In a separate bowl, mix the spices, vanilla extract, and the pumpkin puree. Beat in the confectioners’ sugar a little at a time until incorporated. While the powdered sugar is being incorporated slowly add the milk. Then add the pumpkin mixture and beat for one minute. You want your filling to be creamy and fluffy.
- Once the cupcakes are cool, use a cupcake corer or a knife to cut a hole in the middle of the cupcake. Spoon in 1-2 teaspoons of the pastry cream filling into the center of the cupcake. You may eat or place the part of the cake you removed back on the cupcake.
- Frost the cupcakes with the cream cheese icing, and enjoy your sweet treat.
- Decorations Tips: You can use pumpkin candy corn or a cupcake decoration kit.
I hope your family and friends enjoy this recipe as much as mine do.