I mentioned before that I have just started WeightWatchers. Well this past Sunday was my biggest temptation so far, my husband’s birthday. I was preparing the food so I had control over what I was serving, but he had some requests that were pretty high on the points so I needed to find ways to trim down the points. One dish that I will talk about on Thursday was my take on a Mushroom Cheesy Pasta dish that was a wonderful treat for my mushroom loving husband but also helped turn what is normally a rather high point dish to a much more tolerable number. But what I was really concerned about was the desserts. I told my husband I was cooking some special cupcakes for his birthday and I set about to find a recipe that still tasted like a yummy birthday treat but that didn’t set me over in points on a day that was already hard enough. Now keep in mind that I am talking about the cupcake itself being better on the points aspect, not including the icing sugar. Since it was a birthday celebration with friends I felt I wanted to make it a presentable treat that looked like a birthday cupcake, not one for a diet. I didn’t tell anyone, other then my husband, that it was even a WeightWatchers friendly cupcake and people raved that it was delicious. Another thing I loved about it was how moist it was, especially with the jam in the middle. It held its own as a great recipe to do again even if I wasn’t on a diet. Without the icing the cupcake alone is 4 points but with the added icing goes up to 7 so be warned. The icing recipe will happily thinly cover all of the 12 cupcakes. However I chose to go a bit thicker on some both to add the sweet for my husband as well as to give me one without any icing. Although I won’t lie and say say I didn’t want the icing I was pleased to find the cupcake was delicious without it so it made it less difficult to go without.
Strawberry Filled Cupcakes with Strawberry icing
187g (1 1/2 c.) plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp table salt
56g (1/4 c.) butter, melted
75g (1/3 c.) sugar, granulated
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
245g (1 cup) fat-free plain yogurt
1 Tbps skim milk
1/4 tsp vanilla
250g (1 c.) icing sugar
2 Tbsp Strawberry Jam *optional 1 tsp extra
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 12-hole muffin pan with cupcake liners or coat pan with cooking spray.
In a medium bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; set aside.
With an electric mixer on medium speed, cream together butter, sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy. The reason you need to melt the butter is because if you don’t it will be a lot harder to get the butter to blend with the yogurt.
Add eggs and yogurt; beat until well-combined.
In small batches add the flour mixture until batter is fully blended; I prefer to do this step by hand as I find the electric mixer even on slow makes too much of a mess.
Spoon batter into muffin tins about 1/2 full. Carefully add half a teaspoon of jam into the center of each cupcake.
Bake until tops are slightly golden and a toothpick inserted in center of a muffin comes out clean, about 18 to 20 minutes. Place pan on a wire rack for 2 minutes and then remove cupcakes from pan to cool completely.
Meanwhile, to make icing, in a small bowl mix the icing sugar and vanilla and then in small amounts at time add the milk. You might not need all of the milk so make sure you add a little, stir and then check if you need more. You are wanting a dense yet creamy icing, at this stage you can add the optional 1 tsp of jam to make a nice strawberry jam icing.
Add a small amount of icing to the cupcake and let stand until the icing has hardened slightly. Yields 1 muffin per serving.