McKayla was thumbing through an issue of Martha Stewart Living. Oo-ing and Ah-ing at everything. (What is it about that magazine? Every month Martha convinces me that I can be Martha, too.) She decided that the cupcakes on the last page were a must-make. Coincidentally, I had been seduced by a particularly fragrant bag of nectarines at the grocery store earlier that day. Coincidence? Fate? Karma? Luck? Who knows. But one thing I do know, these are amazing!
So here is the recipe, with the adjustments I made ... (always making some adjustment ...)
Boil water in a pot. While heating up, set up a water bath. (Water bath: bowl full of ice cubes and water that will immediately stop the cooking process.)You are going to be peeling off the skin of the nectarines. When the water is boiling rapidly, gently submerge 4 clean, ripe nectarines. I like to stir them. After a minute, take out one and submerge in the water bath. Test to see if the skin comes off easily. If it does, take them all out and submerge in the water bath. If not return to the pot and continue cooking for about 15 seconds before you test again. Repeat until skin comes off easily, but the fruit should not be cooked. Congratulations! You have just learned how to BLANCH.
Peel, slice, remove pit and chop up the fruit in small chunks. Not itty-bitty so it is just mush, but so you can still see nice chunks. Set aside.
Let's make some cupcake batter!
1 1/2 cubes softened butter (12 tbsp or 3/4 of a cup)
1 1/2 cups sugar
Mix until fluffy. Add the following:
2/3 cup milk (Martha said whole, but I used 1% and felt just fine with it.)
2 tsp vanilla
Sift together the dry and then add to the wet:
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
Mix until everything is smooth and fluffy.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and insert two dozen paper cups in muffin tins. Fill each cup with 1 heaping-tbsp of batter. Then fill with 1 heaping-tbsp of nectarines. Top with 1 heaping-Tbsp of batter. Bake for 25 minutes. The tops should be golden brown. Let cool. Remove from tin.
Let's make some topping:
1 1/2 cups cold whipping cream
1/2 cups sour cream
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 tsp powdered milk (this stabilizes the whipped cream)
Beat together on high speed until it looks like whipped cream should look. Dollop on cupcakes right before you eat. Add a slice of nectarine to make it look super pretty!
Makes 2 dozen.