Sunday, 22 April 2012

Pink Grapefruit Cupcakes

When it's hot and humid outside, I love the sour, sweet and tangy taste of chilled grapefruit for a snack.  A grapefruit packs a healthy punch of benefits in a tiny little package.  An excellent source of vitamin C and fibre, the grapefruit can boost the immune system, reduce cholesterol and help the body increase metabolism and burn fat.  Unlike sweeter fruits, grapefruit has a low glycemic index meaning that it contains less naturally occurring sugars.  Grapefruit also has many antimicrobial properties which makes it great against bacteria in household cleaning and cleanses the digestive system and urinary tract.

I used to think that all grapefruit were the same, but now I know that there's a world of a difference in taste between the varieties.

White Grapefruit - sour similar to a lemon and has slightly more sugar than the other varieties.  Grown in parts of the Caribbean and California, it is high in fibre.

Pink Grapefruit - is actually a bred hybrid pomelo/orange and has antioxidant properties protecting the body from free-radicals.  This variety is mainly produced in Florida.

Ruby Red Grapefruit - grown in Texas and has the strongest aroma.  Began as a mutation of the pink grapefruit, but was soon developed to have a deep red colour and strong perfume.

My favourite is the Pink Grapefruit and lately, I've been buying them by the bagful!  Which is why I've been looking into some tasty and refreshing ways to incorporate my love for grapefruit into my love of baking.  I admit that this recipe isn't for everyone.  Some just don't like citrus in their baking.  I can really appreciate a good lemon cake or key lime pie, so after some tweaks to a recipe I found on Pinterest, I came up with my own version of Pink Grapefruit Cupcakes with a tangy butter cream frosting:

1/2 cup sugar
zest of 1 grapefruit
1 egg
1 cup sour cream
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
juice of 1 grapefruit
2 cups flour
1 tbsp baking powder
pinch of salt

2 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup butter (softened)
1 tbsp grapefruit juice

To begin, grate 1 grapefruit using a fine grater.

Juice the grapefruit by hand or using a juicer.  Reserve 1 tbsp of juice for the frosting and try not to get any pulp!

In a bowl or mixer, combine the sugar and zest with your fingers, then add egg, sour cream, oil, vanilla and grapefruit juice. 

In a separate bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt.  Add to the wet ingredients until just incorporated; do not over mix!

Scoop batter into cupcake liners.  This is optional since the recipe is denser than your average cupcake, so it's not as crumbly and the liners aren't really needed.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes.

Allow your cupcakes to cool for a few hours before frosting.  To prepare the frosting, beat the ingredients with an electric mixer until light and fluffy.  Just a thin layer of frosting will go a long way as the cupcakes are very tasty on their own.

As you bite into one, your taste buds will experience the tangy icing, the citrus flavour and then the sweet fruity cake.  Oh yum!

I love the different dimensions and hope you like it too!

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