November 3, 2011

The Triple Pumpkin Threat

It just so happened that I found instructions for how to carve a cupcake pumpkin online the day that we carved our pumpkins. So, naturally, I carved a cupcake pumpkin. I was quite proud of my pumpkin and deemed it my coolest jack-o-lantern ever when I posted it on Facebook. The picture prompted the comment "pumpkin flavored with pumpkin frosting sprinkled with pumpkin seeds!"

And that was my inspiration for these cupcakes. I used both frosting and cupcake recipes found on my favorite blog Cupcake Project. I decided to match Maple and Rum Pumpkin Cupcakes with Pumpkin Cheesecake Frosting and sprinkled the cupcakes with roasted pumpkin seeds immediately prior to serving. As weird as the pumpkin seed sprinkles sound, there's something oddly satisfying about the salty crunch they add. 

Maple and Rum Pumpkin Cupcakes
1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. allspice
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup pumpkin puree
2 eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup dark rum
1/4 cup maple syrup

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Whisk together dry ingredients. In separate bowl, beat the sugar, pumpkin and eggs together until smooth. Mix in the oil, rum and syrup until smooth. Slowly add the flour mixture, and mix until fully incorporated. Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Makes 12-14 cupcakes.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Frosting
8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
3 cups powdered sugar, sifted

Beat cream cheese and butter together until smooth. Mix in the pumpkin puree. Slowly mix in powdered sugar. Note: The frosting will likely not be stiff enough to pipe. Any leftover frosting would be a delicious "dip" for crunchy gingersnap cookies (if you feel guilty just eating frosting by the spoonful).

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