It is officially the first day of Fall. That means our white pants and shoes are packed away until next Memorial Day and we can finally start cooking with pumpkin again! Might I suggest a batch of pumpkin cupcakes with a cinnamon cream cheese frosting for starters? It's the old workhorse pumpkin bundt cake recipe masquerading as a cupcake and adorned with the best cream cheese frosting I've ever tasted, thanks to cinnamon, a bit of lemon zest and Betty Crocker.
Makes 24 cupcakes
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two 12-serving cupcake pans with papers.
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
¾ cup vegetable oil
2 cups canned pumpkin (15 ounce can)
In a separate bowl, sift together, then mix in:
2 cups flour (9 ounces)
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon ginger
Fill each cupcake paper a little more than half full with batter. Bake at 350 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes, or until firm in the center. Remove from pans and allow to cool completely on a cooling rack before frosting with cream cheese frosting.
Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting
adapted from Betty Crocker
8 ounces cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1/4 cup butter, softened to room temperature
2 teaspoons lemon zest, preferably zested with a microplane zester
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups (1 pound) powdered sugar
3 to 4 teaspoons heavy cream
Beat cream cheese, butter, lemon zest, cinnamon and vanilla with an electric mixer until very smooth. Gradually add powdered sugar and beat until smooth. Add heavy cream, one teaspoon at a time until frosting is desired consistency. Place the frosting into a pastry bag fitted with the tip of your choice and frost as desired.