Every month about this time I post my cupcake of the month entry into the Iron Cupcake challenge. Some months I'm scrambling and others I'm on top of it. This month I was sort of in the middle. The cupcakes were made over the weekend but I had a difficult time finding--or perhaps creating--the right picture. Still not sure but I finally settled on the one at the left.
This is an interesting little cupcake. The secret ingredient this month is nuts and/or seeds. Since I'm in the Southwest a lot, a friend suggested, "why not pinon?" A great idea, and I had some roasted pinon in a baggie in the fridge that had been a gift.
I tell ya, cracking open those shells to get enough for my recipe took all Sunday afternoon! But I persevered and got what I wanted. Pine nuts in a little baggie from the story are sure more convenient. Now I see why they are so expensive! They are buggers to shell without pulverizing the nut at the same time.
So here is my recipe for Pinon and Pepper Cupcakes. Note, these are savory more than sweet, but the frosting still lends the cupake "feel." I have to admit they are different and grow on you!
Pinon and Pepper Cupcakes
1 8 oz pkg corn muffin mix
¼ cup of crushed pinon (pine nuts)
¼ cup evaporated milk
1/3 cup shredded Jack cheese
1 2 oz can diced green chilis
Blend all ingredients above (do not overbeat) and bake in lined muffin cups for 15-20 minutes in 400 degree oven. Top with Mango Pepper Frosting and sprinkle with crushed pinon. Makes 12 cupcakes.
Mango Pepper Frosting
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup of mango pepper jelly
½ to 1 lb box of powered sugar
Blend cream cheese and pepper jelly. Add cream cheese a little at a time and beat together until desired consistency. Pipe or spread on cupcakes.
Here is the prize package for this month. Be sure to check out these fantastic sponsors of Iron Cupcake! Voting begins on the first of the month, as always, and I'll give you a heads up. The cupcakes are always so pretty to look.
The March ETSY PRIZE-PACK is from artists:
Last and certainly not least, don’t forget our corporate prize providers: HEAD CHEFS by FIESTA PRODUCTS, http://www.fiestaproducts.com, HELLO CUPCAKE by Karen Tack and Alan Richardson, http://blog.hellocupcakebook.com, JESSIE STEELE APRONS http://www.jessiesteele.com; TASTE OF HOME books, http://www.tasteofhome.com; a t-shirt from UPWITHCUPCAKES.COM http://www.upwithcupcakes.com/. Iron Cupcake:Earth is sponsored in part by 1-800-Flowers, http://www.1800flowers.com . And as a special thank you, we would like to once again thank DIANAEVANS - http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=5599270 for her participation in the February challenge. An incorrect link was posted and we want to be sure that she gets the recognition she deserves. Thanks again Diana!
- A Bunnycake Easter Plushie by DOGBONEART, http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=21636297.
- A whimsical piece by CAKEASAURUS, http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=5729584.
- as well as a pair of cupcake earrings from LOTS OF SPRINKLES at http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=6057281.
- a collection of all new printed cupcake liners, 200 in all from Sweet Cuppin' Cakes Cupcakery, http://www.acupcakery.com/
- PLUS, IronCupcake:Earth can not forget our good friend, CAKESPY, http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=5243382, who is now going to be doing a piece for our winner each month until further notice - sweet!