raspberry jam cupcakes + sunday sunshine.

Happy Sunday morning! I like my men like I like my whiskey. Just reciting a lyric from a blues song that’s currently playing on KEXP. I highly recommend this Seattle-based station, particularly on Sunday mornings. Their blues show is top, as the Brits might say, and I think coffee + pancakes + blues is one of the best combinations life has to offer.

I’m working this morning, which basically means that I’m sitting at the desk reading Franny and Zooey, re-reading those amazing Salinger-esque sentences that so perfectly encapsulate thoughts and feelings you’ve had, remembering moments in which I felt disheartened or cynical as a teenager. This stream of memories and sentences is punctuated with interactions with customers and the recitation of prices.

I’m prone to tangents, but you already knew that.

The heart of this post, of course, involves baked goods, despite the fact that I routinely swear them off in favor of broccoli. And then I find myself creeping back into the kitchen, like a child investigating the presents under the Christmas tree in the wee hours of the morning. And the cycle of measuring, mixing, and giving to friends begins. Today’s recipe is just what a Sunday calls for: a twist on the traditional cupcake.

I dreamt of them last night. These particular little cakes were the raspberry-filled variety, and the jammy substance caramelized and eventually burned after being left in the oven for an ungodly amount of time as the result of negligent baking habits. This dream imparts to me mundane things I already knew (no secret wish-fullfilllment, Freud!) regarding the importance of getting new batteries for my oven timer, cleaning said oven (see previous post), being more organized, etc. Most importantly, this dream confirms my sneaking suspicion that I should attempt to make a raspberry jam infused cupcake. And that I need these cupcakes as badly as my sun-deprived frame needs Vitamin D.

So here’s a recipe for you and me. Let’s cook these and bask in the sunshine and listen to the blues, okay? Wishing you a lovely Sunday filled with raspberry jam. xo, m

Vanilla & Raspberry Cupcakes

Makes 18-24 (do you like big cupcakes or small ones?)

1 ½ sticks of unsalted butter
1 ¾ cups of sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 teaspoons of pure vanilla
½ teaspoon of salt
2 ½ teaspoons of baking powder
2 ½ cups of flour
1 ¼ cups of milk
Good raspberry jam (homemade is best, but sometimes time is of the essence)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Beat butter and sugar well. Then add the rest of the ingredients, and beat well. (If you want to be diligent, sift the dry ingredients together and then add them to the wet ingredients.) Fill cupcake tins halfway. Place a small spoonful of raspberry jam in the center; top with batter so that the molds are three-quarters full. Bake for 18-20 minutes.

Frosting
1 egg white
250 ml (1 cup) icing sugar
3 tbsp. rose water (optional)

Beat an egg white to stiff peaks. Slowly mix in the icing sugar; add the rose water. When cooled, ice the top of each cupcake with frosting using a knife or a piping bag. Decorate with a few rose petals or fresh raspberries.

Cupcakes and this song? You’ll feel happy, all right.

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