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Staff Recipes: Gluten-Free Tahitian Vanilla Bean Cupcakes with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

The Dirty Apron wouldn't be what it is without Michelle Britton, our Assistant Manager.  She knows this place inside out and backwards, answering approximately 1000 questions a day from customers and staff, and always with a smile.  She's a wealth of information, an all-around lovely person, and lucky for us, an innovative baker!  A gluten intolerance has forced her to experiment when it comes to baked goods, and she's hit some serious home runs.  Take for example these cupcakes, which according to Michelle, "turned out really well. The boys didn't even know they were gluten free or had rice milk in them ;) HA!!"  To top off her sneakily-modified treats, she chose a Maple Cream Cheese Frosting from the Ottoloenghi cookbook.

Tahitian Vanilla Cupcakes 

2 cups All Purpose Gluten Free Flour Blend (White Rice, Brown Rice and Tapioca Starch) 
1 cup organic cane sugar 
1/2 teaspoon sea salt 
1 teaspoon baking powder 
1 teaspoon baking soda 
1 teaspoon xanthan gum 

1 cup vanilla soy, rice, coconut, almond milk or plain regular milk  (I used Vanilla Rice Milk) 
1 organic free-range egg, beaten
3 tablespoons Grapeseed oil
1 tablespoon Tahitian vanilla extract 
1/4 teaspoon lemon juice 

Preheat oven to 350F. 

In a mixing bowl, whisk all dry ingredients together. Then add the wet ingredients and beat with a hand mixer until the cake batter is smooth.

Using an ice cream scoop, plop the batter into the twelve liners. Smooth out the tops with wet fingers. 

Bake in the center of a preheated oven until firm and dome shaped. For me this took about 15-18 minutes at sea level but they may take up to 20 to 22 minutes, depending upon your particular oven and altitude. 

Cool the pan on a wire rack briefly, then gently pop out the cupcakes and continue cooling on a rack (this avoids steaming the bottoms). 

Makes 12 large cupcakes.


Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup light brown sugar 
100 ml maple syrup 
1 cup cream cheese 

Beat butter till light and fluffy then beat in the cream cheese until just mixed in.  Beat in maple syrup and brown sugar.  

Ice cupcakes and if desired, sprinkle with coarse maple sugar!