This cupcake is absolutely delicious! It is honestly the best cupcake I have ever had in the world. And, it makes your whole house smell like pancakes after they've baked. And even now, 3 days after making them, I still walk into the kitchen and can distinctly smell a maple scent. You can also make two cake layers with this recipe, you just have to adjust the baking time (which I gave the adjustments for below). To give it the maple flavor, you use maple sugar instead of regular sugar and add extra maple flavoring. I found maple sugar in Whole Foods if you're trying hard to find it, or if you don't have one of those around I'm sure you can find it somewhere else. To frost the cupcake, I simply used my very favorite buttercream frosting recipe and added half the amount of maple flavoring instead of the vanilla, and it worked wonderfully! If you would like, you can top the cupcakes with chopped walnuts as well. Enjoy!
Maple Butter Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream Frosting
*I substituted the cake flour with 3 cups minus 6 Tbsp. of all-purpose flour. Just put 3 cups of all-purpose flour into a separate bowl and put 6 Tbsp. back into the flour container.
Make the cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake pans with 22 cupcake liners and then spray the pans and liners with nonstick cooking spray.
Lightly mix the yolks, ¼ cup milk, and vanilla together in a medium bowl. Put the cake flour, maple sugar, baking powder, and salt in the mixing bowl. Mix on low speed for a few seconds to blend. Add the butter and ¾ cup milk to the bowl. Mix on low speed until blended, and then mix on medium speed for 1½ minutes. Scrape the batter down into the pan. Add 1/3 of the egg mixture and beat on medium for 20 seconds. Add the next third; beat for 20 seconds. Add the final third and beat for 20 seconds.
Use two spoons or an extra large cookie scoop to divide the batter into the Divide the batter between the 2 prepared cake pans, spreading it out evenly. Bake 15-18 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean.
Make the buttercream: In a large bowl, beat together the butter, shortening, and salt till fluffy. Add about half the confectioners' sugar, and beat slowly until well blended. Add the maple flavoring and half the milk or cream, and beat until fluffy. Continue mixing in sugar and milk alternately until they've been completely incorporated. Beat until the frosting is light and fluffy.
Frost the cupcakes once they have completely cooled.