Strawberry Almond Cupcakes with Strawberry Frosting

I’m an avid fan of All Against Grain, a blog which encompasses cooking and baking without grains. I love Danielle’s photography and recipe ideas, but have only once tried one of her recipes (for homemade hamburger buns precisely, which I’ll post about soon). When I was looking for something to make for my husband’s birthday, I wanted something different and unique. I also wanted to make sure it was a healthy dessert, meaning wheat, sugar and dairy free.

This recipe for strawberry cupcakes from Danielle’s blog caught my eye and I immediately decided I was going to try it. Here’s the original version, and below is mine with some alterations.

STRAWBERRY ALMOND CUPCAKES WITH STRAWBERRY FROSTING

Ingredients, for 1 dozen cupcakes:

  • 2 1/2 cups ground almonds (I measured this and it’s equivalent to 250g)
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup raw honey
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • seeds of 1/2 vanilla pod
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped strawberries

Process:

Preheat oven to 180C. Line a cupcake pan with cupcake paper holders.

Combine the honey, olive oil, eggs, lemon juice, vanilla seeds, and lemon zest in the blender. Puree until frothy and smooth. Add the dry ingredients and blend until the batter is very smooth. You may have to scrape down the sides of the jar with a spatula and blend again to incorporate all of the ingredients well.

Fold in the strawberries by hand. Do not use the blender for this. Pour the batter into the cupcake holders, about 3/4 full. The batter is exactly enough for 12 large cupcakes. Bake for 16-18 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. I baked mine for 18 minutes and then turned the oven off and left them inside for another minute.

Remove from oven and allow to completely cool on the counter before frosting.

Frosting Ingredients:

  • 3 egg whites, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup, plus 2 tablespoons raw honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon  freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup mashed strawberries
  • 12 small strawberries, whole

Process:

In a small saucepan, bring the honey to a boil over medium heat. In the meantime, beat the egg whites and lemon juice to soft peaks. While continuing beating, add the honey, slowly in a steady stream. Continuing beating until the meringue is cool to the touch and you still have stiffer peaks. Fold in the strawberries and mix well.

Pour into a piping bag and pipe onto the cupcakes. Add a strawberry to each cupcake as garnish.

(I made extra meringue than what Danielle calls for in the original recipe, so I could pipe out some more onto a cookie sheet and bake them. I baked them at 180C for about 4 minutes.)