Midnight Melon Cupcakes
I can say that this is a delayed extension of my Tres Leches Dream where I used melon or cantaloupe as the centerpiece of my ingredients. I didn’t even plan on making the cupcakes last night because I had to spend some time fixing my internet connection. What a waste having to call my provider when I figured it out myself after troubleshooting with her for what seemed to be eternity and failed. It was so tiring holding my phone with one hand while plugging and unplugging cords with the other. I know there’s something called Bluetooth but I don’t know where mine is at that time. Anyway, I just had to shut down everything down to the surge protector and when I turned it back on….. There go my lights! We’re back in business!
It was another energy sapping adventure so I needed something to perk me up after our spaghetti with meatballs dinner. I looked at my stash of flavorings trying to decide what to make and my eyes landed on my melon flavoring which reminded me that we have cantaloupe slices in the fridge. Tres Leches cake will take some time so I thought of melon cupcakes. I used my Red Velvet Cupcake recipe minus the vinegar, cocoa powder and food coloring for the cupcakes and the frosting is melon buttercream. I used the melon flavoring for the batter and folded melon bits in it. I didn’t have to use food coloring as the flavoring had a nice color to it. The cupcakes came out good- even without frosting. They came out moist and the melon bits gave that refreshing summer-y flavor. How come I didn’t make this then? Oh well, too many stuff to make with so little time.
The frosting just gave the cupcakes the creamy effect and sprinkling sugar crystals on top made them pretty. Ha ha … sorry but I have meager capabilities when it comes to decoration. And at midnight, who cares anyway? By the way, if you’re wondering how come I called them midnight melon cupcakes- it’s because it was midnight already when I finished making them. Here's my recipe ~
Midnight Melon Cupcakes with Melon Buttercream Frosting
1½ cups sugar
½ cup vegetable oil
2 eggs, room temperature
2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp of baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
1½ cup buttermilk
2 tbsp melon flavoring
1 tsp vanilla extract
¾ cup melon bits, drained
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Beat the vegetable oil and sugar in an electric mixer for 3 minutes on medium speed until light and fluffy.
2. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until each is fully incorporated. Be sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl to ensure even mixing.
3. In a large bowl, sift together the all-purpose flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. In another bowl whisk together the buttermilk, melon flavoring and vanilla extract.
4. Add a fourth of the dry ingredients and mix, then add a third of the wet. Continue adding in a dry, wet, dry pattern, ending with the dry ingredients.
5. Fold the melon bits into the batter
6. Scoop into cupcake papers, about ½ to ¾ of the way full. Bake for 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Rotate the pan after the first 15 minutes of baking to ensure even baking.
7. Let cool for one minute in the pan before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
Melon Buttercream Frosting
1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted
3 to 5 tablespoons milk
1 tbsp melon flavoring
1. Place the butter in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed until fluffy, 30 seconds. Stop the machine and add the confectioners' sugar, 3 tablespoons of the milk, and the melon flavoring.
2. Blend with the mixer on low speed until the sugar is incorporated, 1 minute. Increase the speed to medium and beat until light and fluffy, 1 minute more. Add up to 1 tablespoon more milk if the frosting seems too stiff.
3. Use a pastry bag or Ziploc cut at the tip to pipe the frosting. I sprinkled sugar crystals on top to make them prettier.