Banana s’mores for Cupcake Hero
VOTING BEGINS TODAY FOR CUPCAKE HERO BANANA (VOTE 9/17-9/21)
Banana S’more Cupcake
When I found out the ingredient for my first Cupcake Hero was banana, I have to say I was more than a little bummed. My kids are notorious for not eating baked goods that even remotely smell like banana. I blame Bea, but that’s a story for another day. Anyway, I was talking to Bea and Dani (my sisters, for those of you who don’t know) and when I asked them what they thought of when I said banana, they both mentioned putting bananas on their s’mores and how much they love them. So, I started fiddling around with some ideas and the banana s’more cupcake was born.
I’m sorry, but I’m about to bombard you with photos. I couldn’t help it. That marshmallow frosting was just begging to be photographed.
You get everything you love from the classic s’more, but with a banana twist. There’s a graham cracker crumb layer underneath a banana cupcake. The cupcake is filled with milk chocolate ganache, then topped with a big golden dollop of marshmallow frosting. I wish Bea and Dani were here to taste test for me!
(I made my ganache filling the night before I baked the cupcakes, so this does require a smidge of pre-planning. I needed it to be thoroughly chilled so I could whip it for the filling.)
And just one more for the road because I seriously could not stop taking pictures of these! I also couldn’t stop eating the frosting straight out of the bowl. Big spoonfuls. It was amazing. I had extra so I mixed it into some homemade chocolate ice cream too. And on top of the ice cream. And straight out of the bowl again. It was soooo good.
Recipe: Banana S’more Cupcake
(adapted and added to from a Martha Stewart recipe for banana cupcakes)
1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
3/4 c. granulated sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 c. unsalted butter, melted
1 1/2 c. mashed, ripe bananas
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
Graham Cracker Layer:
1 1/2 c. graham cracker crumbs
1/3 c. unsalted butter, melted
3 Tbsp. granulated sugar
5 1/2 ounces of milk chocolate, finely chopped ~ I went with Hershey bars to give it that genuine s’more flavor
2/3 c. heavy cream
4 large egg whites
1 c. granulated sugar
1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
Begin by making the ganache the night before you plan on baking the cupcakes. Place the cream in a small, heavy saucepan and warm over medium-high heat until it begins to bubble around the edges. Remove from heat and add chopped chocolate. Whisk until smooth, then pour into a bowl. Place a piece of plastic wrap on the surface of the ganache and refrigerate overnight.
When you’re ready to bake the cupcakes, preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a 12 cup muffin tin with paper liners.
Graham Cracker Layer:
Combine graham cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter in a small bowl. Stir to mix. Drop a tablespoon of crumb mixture in the bottom of each muffin liner. Tamp down with a small glass. (You’ll have leftover for sprinkling on top of the marshmallow frosting.)
In a bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. In the well, mix together melted butter, mashed bananas, eggs, and vanilla extract. Stir to incorporate flour mixture, but do not overmix. Divide evenly between 12 muffin cups.
Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 20-25 minutes. Remove from pan and cool completely on a wire rack before moving onto the next step.
Whisk your chilled ganache. Spoon into a pastry bag fitted with a medium size tip. Poke the tip into the cooled cupcake and fill the cupcake with the whipped ganache.
Place egg whites, sugar, and cream of tartar in the heatproof bowl of your electric mixer. Set over a saucepan of simmering water, but make sure it isn’t touching the water. Whisk constantly until the sugar has dissolved and the whites are warm to the touch, about 3 or 4 minutes.
Move your bowl over to your electric mixer and fit the mixer with the whisk attachment. Beat, starting on low speed and gradually increasing to high speed, until stiff and glossy peaks form, about 5-7 minutes. Add vanilla and mix until combined. Immediately frost cupcakes by spooning a large dollop of frosting onto the cupcake, then use the back of the spoon to make peaks and curls. To lightly brown your frosting, you can use a kitchen torch or place them under your oven’s broiler. If using the broiler method, the ganache will be very gooey and melted inside your cupcake for a while afterward. Refrigerate for a bit to firm it back up.
Makes 12 regular-sized cupcakes.