who knew i had so many excuses for baking? cherry vanilla cupcakes

finally found an excuse to make the cherry-vanilla cupcakes AND use not only the mascarpone in the fridge but some of the cherries in the freezer. unfortunately, it is a sad occasion--yet another deserter from our office. i’m not sure if people are going to get as into these as they did with the red velvets, mostly because i think we’re going to have a ton of food. but that just means more for me, yeah?

i used a LOT of vanilla in this recipe, more than it called for, and i also threw in some dried flecks of vanilla into the batter. while i was filling the cupcakes, i kept snacking on the scraps. also, bonus points for my first filled cupcake experiment. next on the list--boston cream cupcakes!

also, i’m not sure exactly how i felt about the resulting cherry filling. part of me is seriously convinced that they would work better with a high-quality cherry jam or preserve instead of a half-assed cherry compote. and i think the compote could have used more water.

cherry vanilla cupcakes with vanilla mascarpone frosting
(adapted from the cupcake bakeshop)

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
2-¾ cups all-purpose flour
1-½ teaspoons baking powder
⅛ teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla
Vanilla Mascarpone Frosting:
8 oz mascarpone cheese, room temperature
2 tbsp butter, room temperature
2 tsp vanilla paste (extract is fine)
1 tbsp milk
1 1/4 cups confectioners sugar
Cherry Filling:
2 cups cherries, pitted, fresh or frozen
½ cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch

1. Beat butter on high until soft, about 30 seconds.
2. Add sugar. Beat on medium-high until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
3. Add eggs one at a time, beat for 30 seconds between each.
4. Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Add to mixer bowl. Add the milk and vanilla. Mix to combine.
5. Scoop into cupcake papers about half to two-thirds full (depending on whether you want flat or domed cupcakes).
6. Bake for 22-25 minutes until a cake tester comes out clean.

Note: These cupcakes tend to rise quite a bit and will overflow if you put too much batter in the cupcake paper. Keep it under two-thirds full. They also tend to pull away from the papers as they cool. It should be minimal if the cupcakes were baked enough and shouldn’t be an issue. (At least it isn’t for me.)

1. Sift powdered sugar into a bowl or onto parchment
2. Beat butter at medium-high speed until creamy
3. Add half of the sugar, the vanilla and the milk. Beat until combined
4. Gradually add remaining sugar until you get to the consistency and sweetness you like.

1. Add cherries, water, and vanilla to a pot. Cook for 10 minutes over medium-high heat.
2. Stir together sugar and cornstarch then stir into the cherries.
3. Cook until thick, about 20 minutes.

1. Fill each cupcake with filling. I used the “cone method”, but many methods will do.
2. Frost filled cupcakes.
3. Top with a rinsed and patted dry maraschino cherry.

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