Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Tres Leches Cupcakes

A few weeks ago, two of Sean’s very good friends got married!  We had been invited to their engagement party, but it turned out to be their wedding reception!  It was a fun surprise and I don’t think I’ve ever actually seen two people who are more in love and made for one another.  We hope they have a happy life together and that their love will continue to grow forever and always.  

The engagement party-turned-wedding reception was catered by the bride’s mom and it was absolutely fabulous.  She is originally from Honduras, so we had pulled pork, black rice and beans, enchiladas and an oyster bar!  Sean and I were so impressed by the delicious food that we attempted to recreate the pulled pork at home.  We made two batches and the entire house was filled with the fragrant aroma of slow cooked pork, orange and garlic.  Although we still have some perfecting to do, our meal was scrumptious. 

It got me thinking.  What would be an appropriate finish to our Latin feast?  My brain swirled around fried plantains and ice cream, and flan, and finally rested on Tres Leches Cupcakes.  I’ve made Tres Leches Cake several times before and I’ve always found it to be incredibly satisfying. 

These Tres Leches Cupcakes are just as enchanting.  Small chilled cakes, dowsed in a sweet cinnamon cream and served with whipped cream frosting – what’s not to like after a spicy and dynamic main course?

1 white or yellow cake mix and the ingredients it requires*
¼ C. sweetened condensed milk
¾ C. whole milk
½ t. cinnamon
1 pint of whipping cream + 2 T. of sugar
White chocolate, for garnish

*I haven’t mastered baking yet, so I take advantage of store-bought help – why not?

Bake the cupcakes according to the mix’s instructions.  Allow them to cool completely. 

While the cupcakes are baking, mix together the two kinds of milk in a small bowl.  Set in the refrigerator to chill. 

In a large bowl, beat the whipping cream until soft peaks form.  Add the sugar and whip until very stiff peaks form – you’ll want them to be stiff so that they can stand up on the cupcakes.  Set the whipped cream in the fridge to keep it cool. 

When the cupcakes have cooled, take a spoon and scoop out a small portion of the cake’s top.  Gently spoon some of the milk mixture into the cupcake and allow it to soak in.  Place the top back on the cupcake.  **I have experimented with poking holes in the cake, which is normally how I’ll make Tres Leches sheet cake.  However, the milk mixture tends to drip right down the sides, instead of soaking in.  So, for the cupcakes which are more delicate and visible from all sides, I use the scoop technique (a very technical term) ** 

Pipe the whipped cream on top of the cupcakes and sprinkle with cinnamon, for that finished look.  If you desire, garnish your cupcakes with berries and white chocolate designs for an elegant touch.  

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