Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Gluten-Free Basic White Cupcakes (Dairy-Free) or Anatomy of a Gluten-Free Wedding Cupcake Testing

Remember when I said I was done with baking things I couldn't (or shouldn't) eat? I meant it.

But I forgot something.

I had offered and was super excited to be baking the mini-cake and cupcakes for my friend Gina's wedding.

This meant/means lots of baking. And if I'm being honest, testing.

It also means some detoxing is in order.

But first, cupcakes.

Now, you may think that my cupcake decorating and photography skills have blossomed overnight because of that beautiful photo up above. But no, that comes to you courtesy of my friend and housemate, Ashley Ayres. She's the creative mastermind behind the wedding cupcakes. I come up with the cupcake recipes, she makes the cupcakes look beautiful. And takes scrumptious photos too, clearly...

Now, back to my photography, which in my defense, was done as an afterthought when the bride and groom arrived and I realized I should get some pictures.

I had no intention of sharing these recipes since I was just adapting other recipes for my use. But I realized they were so delicious there was no point in keeping them from you! I made three different cupcakes for the bride and groom to choose from, and while they were just planning on picking one, there were two they really adored. So with that in mind, we decided to make two different cupcakes, one with a lemon-raspberry frosting and the other with a peanut butter and jelly frosting. Today's recipe is for the white cupcakes to go with lemon-raspberry frosting. Of course, you can use any type of frosting you like!

This is a cassava flour recipe from Brittany's and my cookbook, part deux. What I love about cassava is that you don't need to use too many ingredients. What I don't love is that, like coconut flour, it works best with eggs. So this is not a recipe for my fellow egg-free readers, but if you can eat eggs, you will absolutely love this!

Cassava flour comes from the same tuber as tapioca starch, but rather than just the starch, it uses the whole plant. I can tell you from experience that it works quite differently than tapioca starch, but creates similarly light and fluffy results.

This particular recipe, for a basic white cake, comes from The Essential Gluten-Free Baking Guides, Part 2, and was developed by Carter Foss and Mark Hetzel of American Key Food Products and Moon Rabbit Foods. I have made some (simple) adaptations to make this recipe dairy-free. Because I know cassava flour isn't as well known here, I want to give you a reason to give this flour a try. Of course, the very fact that my testers loved it so much should encourage you. But for a little added incentive, I've talked with Mark Hetzel of Moon Rabbit Foods to get you a discount on cassava flour purchases.

All you have to do is:
1. Click here
2. Order cassava flour.
3. Enter the coupon code "moonrabbitfoods" to get 25 percent off the cassava flour!

These cupcakes disappeared quickly. Every time the bride asked the groom's opinion, he would say he needed to taste them all again to decide. I hear he went home and promptly took a food coma nap afterward!

Basic White Cupcakes (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free) (Print-Friendly Option) 
(Adapted from The Essential Gluten-Free Baking Guide, Part 2)

1 7/8 cups cassava flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 cup Earth Balance Coconut Spread or Coconut Oil
6 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup non-dairy yogurt (I used Amande cultured almond milk)
(optional) 2 teaspoons lemon zest

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. 
  2. In a large bowl, sift together the flour and baking soda. Set aside. 
  3. In a second large bowl, cream together the sugar and Earth Balance until light with an electric beater, a good 5-10 minutes. 
  4. Add the eggs ones at a time, continuing to beat after each addition. 
  5. Add in half of the flour mixture, then half of the yogurt, continuing to blend. Add the rest of the flour, then the rest of the yogurt and blend until completely mixed. Add the lemon zest here as well if using.
  6. Place the batter into 24 lined or greased cupcake tins. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  7. Let cool for a few minutes before turning onto a cooling rack. Cool completely before frosting. 
Makes 24 cupcakes.

Later this month I'll share with you the other winning cupcake recipe, and perhaps some more of Ashley's gorgeous cupcake porn!


GF Gidget said...

I've never heard of cassava flour! How fascinating! I can't wait to get home and order some!

chris said...

I wish these were egg-free. I cannot have egg.

Where is the frosting recipe?

gfe--gluten free easily said...

Gorgeous! Yes, I absolutely did think you'd become a photo guru! But, truthfully, your photos have always been great IMO, but I do love the presentation in these. ;-) Now I must get some cassava flour! Thanks for snagging the big discount for us, Iris!


Cheryl Harris said...

What a gorgeous recipe! I rarely see cassava recipes so I'm intrigued.


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