Wearing a Disguise

I really enjoyed The Pink Panther movies with Peter Sellers. I remember going to the theater to watch one of the sequels with my mom and Aunt Di, and we quoted lines from the movies for years (we still are, actually — “Does your dog bite?”). Some of my favorite parts are when he’s in disguise and bumbling along in his usual manner — the dentist who gets high on the nitrous oxide with Dreyfus and then pulls the wrong tooth or registering at the hotel as Mr. & Mrs. Lo Key — it just cracked me up. I haven’t seen the new one with Steve Martin. I may still watch it, but Peter Sellers *was* Jacques Clouseau so I’m not sure I’m ready for it.

What does that have to do with cupcakes? These are actually just muffins in disguise, wearing frosting for a big nose, furry mustache, and a hat. I know, there’s such a thin line separating muffins and cupcakes that some people have a hard time telling them apart. In my mind, a cupcake has more sugar, less fiber, and *always* has frosting. A muffin is the coarser work horse of the weekday breakfast — fruit and fiber in a tasty little package.

When Laurie of Quirky Cupcake announced the cranberry theme for the November Cupcake Hero (try saying that and *not* thinking of the song ‘Jukebox Hero’!), I had so many ideas for combining apple and cranberry! One of my favorite upside-down cakes is an apple cranberry cake but I knew I wasn’t going to transform that into a cupcake very easily. I mixed up one recipe and the kids hated it. It wasn’t sweet enough. It was definitely a muffin, not a cupcake.

Finally, I took out the apple and mixed up these. Aside from the fact that I didn’t use any whole wheat flour or any flax or wheat germ, you take off that pretty frosting cap and these are great morning muffins. With the frosting, they make a decent cupcake. Not enough to be a Cupcake Hero, but I think I’m pretty much of a Muffin Momma anyway.

I didn’t get this posted in time for the deadline, so imagine my surprise when I saw the round-up! I love that Laurie calls a muffin a ‘breakfast cupcake’ or a ‘naked cupcake’! Now I can feel like an indulgent, naughty mom in the mornings, telling the kids they can eat *cupcakes* for breakfast! They’ll just be disguised as muffins.

Cranberry Cupcakes

2 c. flour
1/2 c. sugar
2 t. baking powder
1 c. low fat sour cream or yogurt
1/2 c. melted butter
1 t. grated orange peel
2 eggs
3/4 c. whole berry cranberry sauce
1/2 c. chopped almonds, if desired
White Chocolate Frosting (below)

Preheat oven to 375 F.

Stir together flour, sugar and baking powder. In a separate bowl, combine sour cream, butter, orange peel, and eggs. Stir wet ingredients into dry until just moistened. Fold in cranberry sauce and almonds.

Pour into muffin tins and bake 18-20 min or until done.

White Chocolate Frosting

1 c. white chocolate chips, melted
3 Tbsp. butter
2 1/2 c. powdered sugar
1 t. vanilla or almond extract

Melt white chocolate chips. Add butter and stir until smooth. Beat in powdered sugar and extract. Add milk as needed to obtain desired consistency.


One Response

  1. These look delicious! I love it that you used white chocolate for the frosting.

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