“To everything-turn, turn, turn/ There is a season-turn, turn, turn”
You know it’s time to switch gears into cinnamon, pumpkin and apple when the temperature lowers to a nice, cool 85 degrees in D.C. and you find yourself paying $11.95 for a fall baking magazine at the checkout counter 😉
One of the fruits I’ve always had the most problems with is peaches: They’re hard to ripen, removing the skin is a bit–, and they always seem to make my pies runny.
But two can play that game, Peaches! Instead of slicing them and surrounding them in some kind of crust, I thought I’d purée the hell out of them and stuff it inside a batter. Who’s laughing now?!
I was making these for a last-minute dinner invitation and at first I thought I could cheat by using a recipe I found on the internet that uses a white boxed cake mix as the base. If you see this recipe DO NOT USE! You can’t taste the peaches because the only flavor that comes through is Betty Crocker.
So after indulging in about five of those cupcakes [hey, I like boxed cake just as much as the next person] and then saving the rest to throw to the abnormally large catfish in Georgetown’s river, I started from scratch using my recipe for berry cupcakes and subbing in peach purée. I modified it just a smidge to bring out the peachy-ness and I’ll re-provide it below. I also made a nice peach frosting using more of the purée and a healthy dose of schnapps to cap it off.
Now, because I was in a rush, the frosting wasn’t as thick as I would have liked to make my roses [I’ll discuss this more below] but you gotta’ just say ‘to hell with it’ sometimes.
Adiós, summer! “I really love your peaches/ Want to shake your tree”.
- Food processor or blender
- Stand or electric mixer
For the cupcakes:
- 2/3 cup peach purée *Note: To remove peach skin, see instructions below
- 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp. peach schnapps
- 1/4 cup whole milk
- 1/3 cup cornstarch
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1 1/4 cup flour
- Dash cinnamon
For the frosting:
- 1 stick unsalted butter, rm. temp.
- 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
- 6 Tbl. peach purée
- 1 Tbl. peach schnapps
- 3 Tbl. peach jam, puréed [this will turn your jam into a different consistency but will help stabilize your frosting. I puréed the entire jar of jam then took out 3 Tbl.]
- 8 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted [this makes an extremely sweet frosting. If your frosting doesn’t need to be piped for a design, I would decrease the sugar by 2-3 cups]
- Terracotta gel food coloring [optional]
For the cupcakes:To remove the skin from peaches they MUST be blanched first. If you try to remove the skin with just peeling they will turn out mushy and pulpy. To blanch, boil a large pot of water on high heat. Once it reaches a good boil, turn off the heat and submerge your peaches for about 45-50 seconds. Remove the peaches with a spoon and place in a cold ice bath to halt any cooking of the peach. Using a sharp paring knife, make an incision in the peel and peel using your finger-it should come right off. If you’re still having trouble, place back in hot water for another 30 seconds. To see a video on this, click here.
Slice peaches and purée. Keep purée, covered, in fridge overnight or up to a day to let sweeten. It will turn color-from orange to brown-but that’s okay because the purée is still good and your cupcakes will still be a nice color, promise!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin pan or grease pan. In a stand mixer, beat the butter, sugar, and salt until well-mixed. Add the eggs, vanilla extract, and schnapps and beat until mixed. Add the milk and peach purée and beat until mixed. Add the cornstarch and baking powder and mix to incorporate. Add the flour and cinnamon and beat on medium speed for 30 seconds.
Divide batter among cups. Bake for 20-22 min. Let cool completely.
For the frosting: Mix shortening, butter, and peach schnapps with a stand or electric mixer on low speed. Add purée and jam and mix on low. Add confectioner’s sugar and beat until incorporated. Add terracotta gel coloring [optional].
To learn how to pipe an inverted cupcake rose, click here. To do this, you will need a 1M piping tip.