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Last week I posted a very positive review of The Sprinkles Baking Book by Candace Nelson. She started the Spinkles chain over a decade ago. It’s simple to describe Sprikles: the best cupcakes on earth. I know. I have tested and tasted far and wide. There is simply no question that the Sprinkles products have a deeper, richer taste. And the frostings. Those frostings are divine.

The best seller at Sprinkles is this Black and White. Suzi and I got our copy of the book on Friday. On Saturday we were in our kitchen, baking and frosting. Here was the fear: will it taste like the cupcakes we buy. Buy all the time, I must say.

And the answer is? Yes. Heartily, yes. The product here is the product you buy. Now, there are only 20 Sprinkles outlets so far around the country. The likelihood is you have never walked past one. When you can, pay a visit. In the meantime, all you need is this perfect cookbook and perfect recipe.

The cupcake is excellent. The frosting is tear evoking. This frosting recipe has the perfect combination of ingredients, in just the right proportions, to yield a sublime topping for these cupcakes or the dessert of your choice.


Black and White Cupcakes

Yield: 12 cupcakes or one 2-layer 9-inch cake

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ⅔ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ⅔ cup buttermilk, shaken
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 10 tablespoons (1 ¼ sticks) unsalted butter, slightly softened
  • ⅔ cup sugar
  • ⅓ cup lightly packed light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • Vanilla Frosting

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 12-cup cupcake pan with paper liners.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a small bowl, stir together the buttermilk and vanilla.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and both sugars on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce the speed to medium-low, add the eggs one at a time, and beat until creamy, 1 to 2 minutes. Slowly add half the flour mixture, then the buttermilk mixture, then the remaining flour mixture, beating until just blended after each addition.

Divide the batter evenly among the liners and bake until the tops are just dry to the touch and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and cool completely before frosting with vanilla frosting.


Vanilla Frosting

Yield: 2 cups

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, slightly softened
  • ⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 3 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 5 teaspoons whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Preparation:

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and salt on medium speed until light and fluffy, 2 minutes. Reduce the speed to low, gradually add the confectioners' sugar, and beat until incorporated. Increase the speed to medium, add the milk and vanilla, and beat until fully blended, 1 to 2 minutes, making sure not to incorporate too much air into the frosting.

 

Source: The Sprinkles Baking Book by Candace Nelson [Grand Central Life & Style 2016]

Photo Information: Canon T2i, EFS 60mm Macro Lens, F/22 for 1/8th second at ISO‑3200