Prep 2 hrs 30 mins
Cook 25 mins
Popcorn and Peanut Cupcakes Recipe courtesy: Arleen Scavone Show: Cupcake Wars Episode: Film Festival Face-Off Recipe categories: Nuts, Vegetables, Corn, more Dish: Cupcakes Herbs & Spices: Vanilla
- 1⁄2 cup sugar
- 6 ounces dry roasted salted peanuts, 1 1/3 cups
- 1⁄2 cup light corn syrup
- 1⁄4 ounce unsalted butter, 1/2 tablespoon
- 1 tablespoon baking soda
BUTTERMILK POUND CAKE
- 2 1⁄4 cups sugar
- 9 ounces butter
- 5 eggs
- 3 egg yolks
- 3 cups cake flour
- 1 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 1⁄4 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons salt
- 3⁄4 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 1⁄2 cups peanut brittle, from included recipes, chopped into small pieces
- 2⁄3 cup mini chocolate shell candy
- 1 cup prepared butterscotch caramel sauce (Mrs. Richardson's Butterscotch Caramel Topping)
- 1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream
- 1 pinch salt
- 8 ounces butter
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar
- 3⁄4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 3⁄4 cup corn syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled
- 1⁄2 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 1 ounce unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
- 1⁄2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1⁄4 teaspoon baking soda
- 4 cups popped unflavored popcorn
- 1⁄2 cup egg white, from 3 large eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- 10 ounces unsalted butter, softened and cut into small pieces
- 1⁄4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350°F Grease a sheet pan with nonstick spray. Line 3 (12-cup) cupcake or muffin pans with paper cupcake liners.
- FOR THE PEANUT BRITTLE:.
- Combine the sugar, peanuts, and corn syrup in a saucepan. Cook on medium heat until the mixture is golden in color. Remove the saucepan from the heat. Stir in the butter and baking soda. Working quickly, spread the mixture onto the greased sheet pan. Allow the mixture to cool slightly before using a spatula to spread the mixture out even further. Once cooled a little more, stretch the candy out to be thin. Once fully cooled, approximately 30 minutes, break the candy into small pieces. You will not need all this brittle for the cupcakes. The extra can be stored in a plastic storage container for snaking or a second batch of cupcakes!
- FOR THE BUTTERMILK POUND CAKE:.
- In a large bowl, beat together the sugar and butter until smooth. Add the eggs, 1 at a time. Scrape down the bowl and mix after each egg addition. In a separate bowl, sift together the cake flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda. In a third bowl, mix together the buttermilk and vanilla extract. Add the dry ingredients and buttermilk mixture to the butter-egg mixture, alternating between the dry and wet ingredients. Fold in the chopped peanut brittle.
- Using a medium-size ice cream scoop, scoop the batter into the prepared cupcake liners. Add a layer of the mini chocolate shell candies. Bake until the tops of the cupcakes lightly spring back when pressed and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 20 to 22 minutes.
- BUTTERSCOTCH CARAMEL:.
- Warm the butterscotch topping, and then add the cream and salt, mixing until smooth. Allow the mixture to cool, and then transfer to a disposable pastry bag fitted with a small tip and use to fill the cupcakes. This is a little sticky and messy!
- FUDGE ICING:.
- In a food processor, blend the butter, sugar, cocoa and salt until smooth. Add the corn syrup and vanilla extract. Blend again, making sure to scrape the sides of the food processor. Add the chocolate and pulse until completely combined. It should be smooth and creamy.
- CARAMEL CORN:.
- Place the brown sugar, salt, butter, corn syrup, and vanilla extract into the microwave-safe container, and cook on HIGH power for 1 minute. Remove and stir until smooth. Place the container back in the microwave and cook again for another 2 minutes, or until the mixture is bubbling.
- Remove the container from the microwave and stir in the baking soda. It will foam up. Spray a large stainless steel bowl with nonstick spray, and place the popcorn in it. Pour the hot mixture from the microwave over the popcorn, and toss until evenly coated. Spread the popcorn over a sheet try and move it around until it is all separated. Allow the mixture to cool before layering on top of the fudge icing.
- VANILLA BUTTERCREAM:.
- In a bowl, whisk together the egg whites and sugar. Heat them over a bain marie until hot and the sugar is melted. Pour the hot egg white-sugar mixture into the bowl of an electric mixer and whisk on high until the mixture is cooled. Switch to a paddle attachment. With the mixer running on a medium-high speed, gradually add the softened butter until the frosting is thick, smooth and glossy. Add the vanilla extract, and mix until combined.
- FOR THE ASSEMBLY:.
- Fill the cooled cupcakes with the BUTTERSCOTCH CARAMEL. Spread the FUDGE ICING on top. Sprinkle the CARAMEL CORN over the icing and top with a dollop of the VANILLA BUTTERCREAM. Top the BUTTERCREAM with a Mini Chocolate Shell Candy.