Suggested Pairing (music to cook by):
Today, by Raul Malo (try the Listen to Samples button)
While watching Cupcake Wars, hiking on the treadmill, and listening to Lady Gaga (don’t judge me!), I couldn’t help but think the cupcakes could be somehow… better.
And how does one make anything better? ADD BACON!
So to kick off my blog, I’ve invented the following recipe:
- 12 ounces bacon, cooked & chopped
- 1 C chopped green chilis (roasted Hatch chilis – if you have ’em,
use ’em), divided. (1/2 C well-drained for cupcakes, the rest for the icing.)
- 1/2 C butter + extra for pan
- 1/4 C sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 C buttermilk (I’m not sure I could tell the difference if regular milk was used.)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 C cornmeal
- 1 C flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Chives (My store sells a 0.75 oz package – I use half for icing & half for sprinkles.)
- 6 ounces whipped cream cheese (Or sub regular & thin with milk/cream.)
mini muffin tin
mini food processor
Preheat oven to 375.
Combine cornmeal, flour, & salt in large mixing bowl.
Melt butter in medium bowl in microwave. Mix sugar into butter, add eggs & beat well.
Whisk baking soda into buttermilk, then mix in to butter mixture.
Pour liquid mixture into dry, stir a couple of times, add bacon & green chilis & stir just until mixed.
Using a mini muffin tin, put a tiny dab of butter into each cup. Place tin in oven for a few minutes to get hot, but be careful not to burn the butter. (I have gotten the butter dark golden brown & used it with no problem.) Remove tin from oven & quickly fill with cornbread batter. If you fill to the top, it will make a high crown & about 24 mini cupcakes. I prefer to fill them halfway so that they are only 2-3 bites big, & I throw the batter that won’t fit in the 24 mini pan into another pan. Bake for about 8-10 minutes, or until the top of the muffin is firm. Cool.
Wash & dry the chives very well. Chop half of them fine. Do not try to skip this step and throw them into the mini food processor, because they will just stick to the sides in strings and say, “Ha! I laugh at your whirling blades!” in a voice that sounds suspiciously like John Cleese doing a bad French accent. Into the food processor, do put the green chilis, lifted out of any liquid, & the finely chopped chives (if using here). Puree. Add a couple big spoonfuls of cream cheese & process. Add all the rest of the cream cheese & process until smooth and yummy. Put into a ziploc bag and refrigerate.
Sprinkles: Take the rest of the chives and chop into
Before serving, cut a small corner off of the ziploc bag & squeeze icing onto the cupcakes. Sprinkle with chives. Send me feedback!
Credits: I modified this recipe for the cornbread:
Grandmother’s Buttermilk Cornbread
And many thanks to Jeanne & Steve Stearns for hosting their Chile 101 Party (NOT political, but hey there’s an idea…) & all the folks who taste-tested.