(Caroline Hope - 1 year old)
Hi friends! I have a delightful story to tell you; one which is sure to touch your heart as much as it has mine! And naturally, a cupcake is involved. I hope you are as eager to try this recipe as I was to come up with it!
This story begins with my dear friends, Amy and Brent, who have received a blessing of love in their life. A precious, beautiful family with three children Jackson Brent , Avery Grace , and Savannah Reese  which was not yet complete has finally closed the loop on a heart with a sprinkling of angel dust and an answering of prayers. For the past year and seven months, Amy and Brent have been in the process of adopting a baby from Russia. Finally after much praying, long days of waiting, making several lengthy trips back and forth to Russia and to the orphanage where Caroline Hope was waiting patiently for her family to come and get her; on March 30, 2008, the whole family was brought together in the United States.
The way I know to mark such an exceptional event is to create a unique cupcake! I knew I wanted this cupcake to be extra special and not overly complicated to assemble, so I pulled out my trusty Buttercup Bake Shop Cookbook which always delights me! I decided to use Jennifer's Angel Food Cake recipe because it is first and foremost, easy! As many of you might think when you look at the recipe, do not be intimidated by the amount of egg whites required [2 cups]. A short cut which has worked for me in the past and one which I would encourage you to use should you be short on time (or eggs); is the egg whites which come already separated. I have relied on those in the past and have not been let down.
Secondly, this recipe will work best in a stand mixer, but do not worry, a hand mixer will work just as well should you not have a stand mixer available! Since we are moving into the warmer Springtime weather, if you can find farmers markets with luscious, juicy peaches and nectarines; as well as some plump, tart blueberries to mix together with ripe, succulent mangoes, you can then drizzle a lovely mango tango over the creamy homemade vanilla whipped cream. Most large grocers should carry mangoes through out the year. The key is to look for mangoes which are more red than green.
Spring is about new beginnings. If I had to put Springtime in a cupcake, this would be it. What better way to have a new beginning for Sweet Caroline than with her new and very loving family! The weightlessness of this cupcake is what I imagine angels wings to be like and the wispy, light sweetness of fresh vanilla whipped cream, topped off with a glorious golden mound of mango tango. Fresh mangoes, white peaches, nectarines, and blueberries; finished off with a fresh sprig of mint! Need I say more? Enjoy this recipe and wishes of a lifetime of happiness to my dear friends. They are tangible proof of the saying "Good things happen to good people!"
This is what "joy" looks like!
Angel Food Cupcake
1 cup cake flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
13 or 14 egg whites (2 cups)
1 1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. salt
1. Preheat the oven to 375° degrees. Line cupcake pan with papers and set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, combine the flour with one cup of the sugar. Sift these together three separate times. Set this aside and place remaining sugar in a separate cup for later use.
3. Place the egg whites in a standing mixer bowl and, using the whisk attachment, turn the mixer at the lowest speed.
4. After 1 minute, add the cream of tartar, vanilla, and salt.
5. After another minute of beating, turn the mixer to medium speed and gradually add the 1/2 cup of remaining sugar. Stop and scrape the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula whan all the sugar is added. Resume beating until the whites are stiff but moist. (This should take about 3 to 5 minutes.)
6. Transfer the egg whites to a large bowl. Sift the flour-sugar mixture over the whites and gently fold until all the dry ingredients are mixed in.
7. I used a small ice cream scooper (2 scoops) to fill the cupcake liners and it was the perfect amount. The cupcakes baked for 9 minutes but each oven varies, so watch your baking times. I would say no longer than 10 minutes as the bottoms may burn.
8. Cupcakes will be done when a toothpick comes out of the center clean. Remove cupcakes from the pan and place on a wire rack. Cool completely before frosting with Vanilla Whipped Cream and drizzling with Mango Tango.
Vanilla Whipped Cream
Makes about 2 cups
1 cup heavy whipping cream
4 tsp. pure vanilla extract
3 tbsp. confectioner's sugar
1. Combine ingredients in a cold stainless steel bowl. Mix with an electric mixer with whisk attachment, on medium until soft peaks form. Be careful not to overmix as your whipped cream could turn buttery.
2. Add some Wilton gel food coloring to achieve desired pastel color. I used yellow, but any color will complement fresh fruit.
3. Once your soft peaks form, transfer whipped cream to piping bags, carefully, and pipe onto completely cooled cupcakes.
4. Drizzle with Mango Tango and garnish with fresh mint just before serving.
1 or 2 medium, ripe mangoes, pitted and chunked
2 or 3 large, ripe white peaches, pitted and chunked
2 large, nectarines, pitted and chunked
2 oz. fresh blueberries
NOTE: If you have never cut a mango before, see directions below on "HOW TO CUT A MANGO"
1. Once Mango, Nectarines and Peaches are cut, combine in a large bowl and add Blueberries.
2. Drizzle over cupcakes frosted with Vanilla Whipped Cream, just before serving.
HOW TO CUT A MANGO
1. Wash and peel your mango. Be careful after peeling the mango as they can become very slippery!
2. Hold the mango firmly with one hand. Starting from the outside slice downward cutting 1/2 inch slices towards the center with your opposite hand.
3. Once you reach the pit (you will see a long white pit in the center) turn the mango and repeat the steps.
4. Continue this process until all the fruit has been cut off of the mango.
5. After all the slices have been cut; cut the slices into chunks, place in a bowl to be mixed together with white peaches and blueberries for the "Mango Tango" to be drizzled over the top of the fresh vanilla whipped cream and angel food cupcakes.