I'm feeling a bit under the weather with an upset tummy (can't stand it because it gets in the way of my eating), so this will be a brief post.
This past Sunday two friends celebrated their birthdays with a crawfish boil. I'm not into the little guys, but I went for the shrimp gumbo and the hurricanes. And since it is an unspoken rule that I bring dessert I took cupcakes instead of a birthday cake.
I've had a few ideas (and cravings) in the back of my mind for a while now. Over a year ago, my friend and at the time co-worker Miranda loaned me The Cornbread Book where I found a learned about popcorn flour. I copied a few recipes using popcorn flour and filed that information for a later date.
While thinking about different flavor combinations and ideas for cupcakes, this idea about popcorn kept coming back to me. I shopped for supplies online even before the final product was conceptualized. I went to the King Arthur Flour site and ordered assorted swirl colored muffin cups, a three tiered cupcake carrier (or courier), and brown tulip baking cups when it hit me, a caramel corn themed cupcake!
So, after working and reworking the plan and thinking about several recipes and becoming a little frustrated in the process, here is the final product: chocolate cupcakes filled with peanut butter frosting and topped with ganache, and popcorn-vanilla cupcakes topped with salted caramel frosting and caramel corn. The brown papers were tall enough so that they looked like cones of caramel corn. But to the eater's surprise-and delight!-there was more underneath. I had originally wanted to do a version of the Hostess Cupcakes, but after messing up a few trying to write the names on them, I went with a drizzle (which for some reason, the bag never clogged afterwards, go figure). The only drawback to the brown liners was that they unfolded a little during baking, though I used a muffin pan. I'm thinking that with a thicker batter, they would hold their shape better.
I didn't get a chance to take many photos because I was pressed for time and when I went to take photos at the party, well, guests had already dug in. Though they were a hit, I am still tweaking the popcorn cupcake recipe.