It seems like everyone is in pursuit of the perfect milk substitute these days. Whether you are lactose intolerant, you are looking for something new and different, or you just don't like the taste of regular milk, you have probably tried soy milk, rice milk or almond milk at some point.
Well in case you hadn't noticed, I love almond-flavored baked goods. So any recipe that combines almond milk, almond extract and almond paste takes the cake! Literally! These cupcakes are great because they are not too sweet, sort of like scones. They make me feel very British, like I should be eating them at four o'clock with my afternoon tea.
Check out the almond breeze website for more recipes using almond milk!
Courtesy of Almond Board of California
3 1/2 cups sifted cake flour
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup Vanilla Almond Breeze®
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/3 cup sugar, divided
8 large egg whites, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 cup prepared almond paste, divided by teaspoonfuls and rolled into balls
Preheat oven to 375°F. Place cupcake liners in a cupcake pan.
Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt on a sheet of parchment paper. In a small bowl or measuring glass, combine Vanilla Almond Breeze®, vanilla and almond extract. In the bowl of a standing mixer, beat butter until creamy. Add 1 cup sugar and beat on high speed until fluffy. Add the flour mixture in 3 parts, alternating with the Almond Breeze Vanilla mixture and beating on low speed after each addition. Move this mixture to a large bowl.
Wash the bowl of the standing mixer, drying well to ensure no moisture or grease remains. Beat egg whites and cream of tartar in the standing mixer until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining 1/3 cup sugar, beating on high speed, until peaks are stiff but not dry. Use a rubber spatula to fold 1/4 of the egg whites into cake mixture in the large bowl. Then fold in the remaining egg white mixture until batter is well combined.
Fill each cupcake liner halfway with batter and bake for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and lightly place prepared almond paste (teaspoonfuls rolled into balls) atop each cupcake, centered. Top with batter so the liner is 2/3-3/4 full. Bake until a tester comes out clean, 15 to 18 minutes. Allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes, and move to a wire rack to cool completely. Prepare frosting of your choice (I used chocolate buttercream). Frost cupcakes and sprinkle with chopped almonds. Serve.