Riffing on a theme - Orange Creamsicle Cupcakes

OK, as promised, here we begin a series of posts where we vary a base recipe to make different flavors of cupcakes.  And, because anything worth doing is worth overdoing, make a different icing for each.  Today's flavor:  Orange Creamsicle!

Orange Creamsicle Cupcakes

3 c. Fancy Flour Blend OR
1/2 c. millet flour
1 c. white rice flour
1/2 c. sweet rice flour
3/4 c. + 2 Tbsp tapioca starch
2 Tbsp potato starch

1-1/2 tsp xanthan gum
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp King Arthur Cake Improver (optional)
1-1/2 c. + 2 Tbsp sugar
5 egg whites
1/4 c. whole milk
3/4 c. orange juice
zest of two medium oranges
1 tsp vanilla extract
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
3 Tbsp coconut oil, melted
1 Tbsp canola oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line 2 standard cupcake pans with paper liners.  Set aside.

In the bowl of your stand mixer, combine dry ingredients.  Turn the mixer on low for just a few seconds to combine.  Why the alteration of leavening?  There is enough acid in the orange juice to react with the baking soda (which is a much more potent agent than baking powder).  We want to neutralize some, but not all, of the acid in the orange juice.

Place the egg whites, extracts, and the milk in a bowl and beat lightly with a fork.  Set aside.

Make sure all of your ingredients are at room temperature and in easy reach:
Turn your mixer back on at it's lowest setting.  Add the butter, coconut oil, canola oil, orange zest and orange juice.  Mix until ingredients start to come together slightly:
Now add the egg mixture in three separate additions, beating for around 20-30 seconds each time.  When all the ingredients are combined thoroughly, turn the speed up to medium and beat thoroughly for 3-5 minutes.  Add a drop or two of orange food coloring, if desired.
Portion the batter into the cupcake liners and bake for about 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Cool completely.

Stabilized Whipped Cream Icing

2 c. heavy cream
2 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 Tbsp water
1/4 tsp unflavored gelatin

Bloom gelatin in water in a small glass or ceramic bowl.  Set aside.  Beat cream until the cream starts to hold it's shape.  Add sugar and vanilla and continue beating until soft peaks form.  Microwave the gelatin mixture for about 30 seconds, until melted.  With beaters running, pour gelatin into cream in a steady stream.  Cream will very quickly stiffen.  Pipe onto cupcakes.
So, we've got one fun variation!


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