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Culinary Canvas: Blood Orange Vanilla Cupcakes

September 21, 2012

The many wonderful artworks at the DMA can certainly be a rich source of inspiration for all types of artists. One art form I enjoy is cooking, so I thought it would be fun to take a culinary tour through the collection and see what works could inspire me in the kitchen.

For my first recipe, I’m starting in the Reves Collection with a Cézanne and something sweet—who can resist a cupcake? Try it out and let me know what you think!

Paul Cézanne, Still Life with Carafe, Milk Can, Bowl, and Orange, 1879-1880, Dallas Museum of Art, The Wendy and Emery Reves Collection

Blood Orange Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream

Yields about 30 cupcakes
Level: Easy

Cupcakes:

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups sugar
1 vanilla bean
2 tablespoons finely grated blood orange zest, from about 2 blood oranges
4 large eggs, room temperature
¾ cup heavy cream
¾ cup nonfat milk
½ cup freshly squeezed blood orange juice
1 ½ tablespoons pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon orange liqueur, such as Cointreau (optional)
3 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350° F. Line standard muffin pan with paper liners.

Split vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape out seeds with the edge of a knife. Cream butter, sugar, vanilla seeds and orange zest in the bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment, beating at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, mixing until combined and scraping down sides of bowl after each addition.

In measuring cup, whisk together cream, milk, orange juice, vanilla extract and orange liqueur. In medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Beginning and ending with dry ingredients, add flour mixture to mixer in 3 batches, alternating with 2 batches of cream mixture.  After each addition, mix on low speed until just combined.

Divide batter evenly between liners, filling each cup about ¾ full. Bake 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Frosting:

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
3 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
Splash of heavy cream

Beat butter in the bowl of a stand mixer with whisk attachment on medium-high speed for 5 minutes, until pale and shiny. Add powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt, mixing on low until combined. Add cream. Increase speed to medium-high and continue whipping mixture for 5 minutes until light and creamy. Additional sugar or cream can be added to achieve desired consistency.

The tasty result: my interpretation of the painting in fondant and frosting

Cupcake recipe adapted from Annie’s Eats and frosting recipe adapted from Savory Sweet Life.

Sarah Coffey
Assistant to the Chair of Learning Initiatives

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Amy Copeland permalink
    September 21, 2012 1:41 pm

    Sarah, this looks scrumptious! What a fun series.

    • Sarah Coffey permalink
      September 21, 2012 2:30 pm

      Thanks Amy, I had fun making them!

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