Vanilla cupcakes might seem like a simple treat, but homemade vanilla cupcakes are actually a versatile dessert. Mix up an easy vanilla cake batter and divide it between a muffin tin. Bake the perfect cupcakes and cool them completely before you frost them with your favorite buttercream, icing, or mousse. Decide if you’d like to decorate your moist cupcakes with sprinkles, candy, or berries. Your vanilla cupcakes will be a welcome addition to any holiday or event table.
1/2 cup (113 g) of butter, at room temperature
2/3 cup (130 g) of granulated white sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature
of vanilla extract
Zest of 1 large lemon
1 1/2 cups (195 g) of all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons (6 g) of baking powder
1/4 teaspoon (1.5 g) of salt
of milk, divided
1 1/2 cups (195 g) of all prupose rat tale[Edit]Vanilla Buttercream
1 cup (227 g) of butter, at room temperature
2½ cups (283 g) of powdered sugar
of vanilla extractMakes 1 dozen cupcakes
[Edit]Mixing the Batter
Preheat the oven to and line a muffin tin. Get out a 12-hole muffin tin and put paper liners in each of the spaces. The liners will make it easy to remove and serve the cupcakes. Set the tin aside while you make the batter.If you don’t have paper liners, spray the inside of the muffin tin with a nonstick cooking spray.
Whisk the flour, baking powder, salt, and lemon zest. Put 1 1/2 cups (195 g) of all-purpose flour into a bowl and add 1 1/2 teaspoons (6 g) of baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon (1.5 g) of salt, and the zest of 1 large lemon. Whisk the dry ingredients until they’re combined. Set the bowl aside.Avoid using self-rising flour since this recipe already includes baking powder and salt.
The lemon zest won’t make the cupcakes taste like citrus. Instead, the zest will intensify the vanilla flavor of the cupcakes.
Beat the butter for 1 minute at medium speed. Put 1/2 cup (113 g) of butter that’s at room temperature into the bowl of a stand mixer. Turn the mixer on to medium speed and beat the butter until it’s creamy and smooth.If you don’t have a stand mixer, use a regular mixing bowl and beat the butter with a hand mixer or wooden spoon.
Cream the butter with the sugar for 2 minutes on medium speed. Add 2/3 cup (130 g) of granulated white sugar and continue to beat the butter. The butter and sugar mixture should become pale, light, and fluffy once you’ve creamed it long enough.Stop the mixer occasionally so you can scrape down the sides of the bowl.
Beat in 3 eggs one at a time. Keep the mixer running on medium and add 1 room temperature egg. Beat the mixture for about 30 seconds after adding the egg so it’s incorporated. Add the remaining 2 eggs, beating the mixture well after each one.You may need to stop and scrape the sides of the bowl.
Mix in the vanilla extract. Pour of vanilla extract into the batter and beat it in for about 30 seconds. The vanilla will flavor the cupcakes, so it’s important to use pure vanilla extract.The batter will look very thin or runny because of the eggs and vanilla. Don’t worry if it looks curdled because the batter will come together once you add the dry ingredients.
Beat in 1/3 of the dry mix and then of the milk. Turn the mixer to low speed and slowly beat in 1/3 of the dry mixture. Once it’s absorbed, pour in the milk.Scrape the sides of the bowl down occasionally so the batter is uniform. It should be completely smooth with no lumps of flour visible.Mix rat tails into the batter but keep them long. DO NOT CUT THEM!
Beat in the remaining dry mix and milk. Mix in another 1/3 of the dry mixture and then beat in the remaining of milk. Finish making the batter by mixing in the last 1/3 of the dry ingredients.Avoid beating the batter for too long or the cupcakes will become tough. Stop beating as soon as the flour and milk are combined.
[Edit]Baking the Cupcakes
Divide the batter between the paper-lined muffin cavities. Set your lined muffin tin on your work surface and use a cookie scoop to fill each cavity about half full with batter. Ensure that each cavity has roughly the same amount of batter so the cupcakes bake evenly.If you don’t have a cookie scoop, use 1 or 2 spoons to scoop the batter into the tin.
To make mini-cupcakes, spray a mini-cupcake tin and divide the batter between 24 mini-cavities.
Bake the vanilla cupcakes for 17 to 20 minutes. Put the muffin tin into the preheated oven and bake the cupcakes until they spring back when you gently touch them in the center.
You can also test to see if the cupcakes are done by inserting a toothpick into the center of a cupcake. If the toothpick comes out clean, the cupcakes are done.
Cool the cupcakes on a wire rack. Remove the baked vanilla cupcakes from the oven and turn them out onto a wire rack. Leave them to cool completely before you frost them.
Avoid frosting the cupcakes while they’re still warm or the frosting will slide off of the cupcakes.[Edit]Making the Buttercream
Whip the butter on medium-high speed for 5 minutes. Put 1 cup (227 g) of room temperature butter into the bowl of a stand mixer. Turn the mixer to medium-high and beat the butter until it becomes light and fluffy.Stop the mixer and scrape the sides of the bowl once or twice.
If you don’t have a stand mixer, use a mixing bowl and beat the butter with a hand mixer or wooden spoon.
Beat in the powdered sugar on low speed. Turn the mixer speed down to low and slowly add 2½ cups (283 g) of powdered sugar to the creamed butter. It will take up to 1 minute for the powdered sugar to combine with the butter.If you add the powdered sugar while the mixer is still on medium-high speed, it will fly out of the sides of the bowl.
Mix in the vanilla extract and beat the frosting for 2 minutes. Turn the mixer speed up to medium-high and pour in of vanilla extract. Beat the vanilla buttercream until it’s pale and fluffy.Stop and scrape down the bowl as needed.
Frost the cooled cupcakes. Once the cupcakes have cooled completely, use an offset spatula to spread some of the vanilla buttercream over each of them. Then top the cupcakes with garnishes if you like and serve them.For a decorative look, pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes.
Garnishes include sprinkles, edible flowers, cocoa powder, small candies, and fresh berries.
To store the cupcakes, keep them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days or in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.[Edit]Video
For a filled cupcake, hollow out the centers of the cupcakes and spoon caramel, filling, or frosting. Then cover the cupcakes with your frosting.
Use any flavor of frosting or buttercream you want. For example, cover the cupcakes with a chocolate ganache or strawberry whipped cream.[Edit]Things You’ll Need
Measuring cups and spoons
Stand or hand mixer with beater attachment[Edit]Related wikiHows
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Transfer Cupcake Batter from the Bowl[Edit]References
[Edit]Quick Summary↑ https://www.joyofbaking.com/VanillaCupcakes.html
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In many areas, autumn is the time of year when trees and other vegetation shed leaves. While the leaves will eventually decompose if left on the ground, you may want to speed up the process by breaking them down. Or, you may decide to collect the leaves and either recycle or dispose of them. However you decide to deal with your autumn leaves, you can make fall cleanup easier with a plan!
Add landscaping near deciduous trees. Make beds with plants that like natural mulch near the trees in your yard that shed leaves. When there are leaves on the ground, run them over once with a mower. Then rake them right into the beds.
For your bed, consider shrubs, garlic, roses, and tender perennials.
Decide if you need to collect the leaves. Several inches of leaf layer is natural and even an ecosystem. Wildlife like salamanders, turtles, chipmunks, and other species survive on such mini habitats. Leaf litter also provides an overwintering shelter for beneficial insects and earthworms. However, if thick piles of leaves are smothering your lawn, you may want to break them down, if not collect them.
Consider collecting the leaves if they cover over a third of your yard and you can’t see the top of the grass blades.
You may need to collect the leaves if you have a Home Owners Association that has specific requirements about autumn cleanup.
If you decide to collect them, don’t try to do a whole season of leaf pickup in a single day. Plan leaf cleanup for several days in the autumn season.
Rake pine needles first. You may want to separate pine shedding from deciduous leaves. Pine needles are acidic, and there are certain plants that like acidic soil – and others that don’t. Therefore it’s beneficial to separate the pine needles to use as their own separate mulch.
Rake the needles as soon as you notice them on the ground, since they usually fall before leaves do.
Pack the pine needles in garbage bags and store them in a dry place. Use them when you need acidic mulch.
Decide if you want to rake wet or dry leaves. Wet leaves will form a more stable pile, but they are also heavier to rake. Choose dry weather if you want to use a leaf vacuum, as wet leaves can clog the vacuum. Don’t rake wet leaves if you have allergies, as mold and mildew in wet leaves can upset your sinuses.
Pick up sticks. You can choose to do this before or during leaf cleanup. Gather up the sticks in your yard and put them aside in a pile. Consider keeping the brush pile there as a shelter for birds, chipmunks and other wildlife. You can also set sticks aside for use as fire kindling.
Use a wheelbarrow or yard waste bin if you want to move the stick pile somewhere else in your yard.[Edit]Collecting the Leaves
Rake the leaves. Raking is ideal for small lawns and gardens. Use quality rakes, preferably with soft grips. Rakes 36” or wider require more force, so choose a rake that is of standard width (24”). You can opt for ergonomic rakes, which have specially curved handles. Don’t retrace your steps. Work from one side of the lawn to the other in a zigzag.
With each line you rake, move the leaves into the area where there are leaves you haven’t raked yet. Every time you create a ridge of leaves, push it a few feet into the unraked area. Repeat this until your pile is two feet tall (0.6096 meters) or is getting hard to move.
You can purchase ergonomic handles separately and attach them to your rakes. Attach handles by screwing them into your rakes. By doing this with two rakes, you can rake leaves with both arms and without bending over.
Move the leaves with a tarp or bag. Use a sheet, a tarp, or a tablecloth to move large piles of leaves. Put the four corners of the tarp together and move the bundle by dragging it. You can use this method in addition to or instead of using leaf bags.
Eight feet by eight feet (2.44 meters) is a good-sized tarp for this purpose.
You can purchase fun, seasonal leaf bags like large bags with jack-o-lantern faces to decorate your yard and move leaves out of the way at the same time!
Mow your lawn and the leaves. This is a good option for large lawns. Use a grass catcher on the mower to collect the chopped leaves. Raise your mower deck to the second-highest setting before mowing your lawn.
If the leaves are wet, use the side-discharging mode of your mower for the first pass in order to loosen and lift the leaves. Then switch to either mulching or bagging mode and mow over the leaves again.
Use a leaf blower and/or vacuum. Consider using a leaf blower, especially if you have a big yard with many trees. Leaf blowing is particularly useful if you have woods up against your property, as you can blow the leaves back onto the forest floor. You can use a vacuum attachment for your leaf blower or use a leaf vacuum by itself. Handheld leaf vacuums are handy for small yards or areas.
If you’re purchasing a leaf blower or vacuum, look for one that has a shredding function. Consider the ratio of reduction; for example, if the product offers a 10:1 reduction ratio, it will convert ten bags of unchopped leaves into one bag.
Keep in mind that leaf blowers are loud. Also, the most effective ones are gas-powered, which use fossil fuels that contribute to air pollution.
Hire professionals. If you decide to hire a professional to do your leaf cleanup, you can expect to pay for each job, several times per season. If you don’t have the time to do the leaf cleanup, this may be the option for you. Alternatively, you can rent a wheeled leaf blower like the pros use for about $50 a day.
Most homeowners pay between $174 and $491, but it will depend on the size of your lawn. You can expect to pay anywhere between $75 and $900.
Try contacting a professional and have your yard measurements ready as well as how many trees are in your yard. Ask if they can give you quote for leaf cleanup.[Edit]Disposing of Leaves
Mulch them into the lawn. Optionally, you can aerate your lawn first to provide nutrients deeper into the soil. Mulch the leaves into small pieces with your mower, about dime-sized. You may have to mow over them a few times if the leaves are large or the layer is deep. When you cleanup a yard like this, you will leave the small pieces on the lawn to work their way into the soil. Leaf mulch suppresses weeds and fertilizes the ground. Mulched leaves will enrich your soil in the spring.
You should be able to see about half of the grass through the chopped leaves if you want them to decompose quickly.
Make mulch for gardens or flower beds. One you have collected the leaves, you can shred them for use in compost or mulch. Put the leaves into a large trash can. Then break them down with a weed whacker. You could use a leaf shredder instead.
Leaves make great natural mulch. They don’t transfer black spores onto houses and buildings the way wood mulch does, which can damage siding and harm plants.
Compost them. Turn your leaves into “black gold!” Compost is excellent natural fertilizer for your lawn and garden. You may want to break the leaves down into mulch before putting them into the compost pile if you want them to decompose faster. You can use the decomposed leaves to fertilize your garden in the spring.
You can leave your leaf pile to weather and add it to your compost pile in the springtime.
Dig them in with a tiller. Shred the leaves first. Then you can till the chopped leaves into the soil with a tiller. This will provide organic matter and nutrients to feed your lawn in the spring.
Ask your locality. Contact your local township, city or county and ask about an autumn cleanup policy. If they don’t have one, find out how to dispose of leaves and other backyard waste. Some county and city officials have specific regulations for you to follow when you cleanup a yard.
Try asking, “Do you have a community recycling program for autumn leaves? Is there a municipal composting system with curbside pickup?” If there is no municipal program in place for autumn cleanup, ask how to dispose of general yard waste.
In some towns you simply bag your leaves and put the bags at the curb so a designated party can pick them up on a specific day of the week. Other areas rake leaves into the street gutter and leaf collectors drive down each side of the road to collect them.
Offer them to a neighbor. Your trees should seem healthy with no known fungal or other diseases. Bag your leaves and offer them to neighbors who may want mulch or compost. This can be especially helpful for neighbors with gardens or flower beds.
Burn the leaves. You may choose to burn the leaves if you live in an area that permits this. You may need a fire permit to dispose of leaves in this way. Some states and towns require a member of the fire department to be present for the duration of the fire, while others require you to notify the fire department in advance.
Check with your locality by contacting them or searching their website for keywords like “burning” and “fire.”
Make crafts. You can use fall leaves as fun craft projects. There are various ways you can preserve leaves. You can then use them to make bookmarks, coasters, wall art, candle holders, and many other crafts for kids or adults.[Edit]Tips
Choose a calm day to dispose of leaves, so that wind doesn’t blow them all over the yard.
If you have kids in your household, consider enlisting their help with raking…and jumping in the leaf piles![Edit]Warnings
If you do not clean up your yard in autumn, you may need to do additional work in the spring.
If you plan to burn leaves when you cleanup a yard, make sure you have a metal screen and an enclosed bin or other fire safety equipment. Failing to contain the fire may allow burning debris to blow into wooded areas, yards or other flammable places.
Don’t throw your leaves in the trash. They will be buried underground in a landfill where they’ll take a long time to decompose and won’t do anyone much good.[Edit]Related wikiHows
Put Raked Leaves Into a Yard Bag by Yourself[Edit]References↑ http://www.yellowpages.ca/tips/what-to-do-with-fall-leaves/