Sunday, October 3, 2010
Sweet Melissa Sundays: Pecan Frosting & Pumpkin Cupcakes
This is a far cry from frosting. This delicious concoction is worthy of the candy category! Or a fancy topping, for ice cream maybe? Wow. That's what I said when I tasted my first bite. The "topping" as I will affectionately refer to it going forward, is soft, caramelly and somewhere between crunch and chewy. The entire family enjoyed it and we mutually agreed this recipe is a keeper!
I feel like I continually repeat myself, but once again, I'm so glad I baked along this week. I would have never, really never, have tried this recipe if I wasn't part of this group. I am continually surprised by how my perceptions of what I what I like and don't like are challenged. In a good way.
This weekend hubby and my sister all headed up to Big Bear, CA to spend the weekend with my Grandparents to enjoy good food, family and the fresh mountain air. I brought along some of my baking supplies and Grandma helped me pull it all together.
I decided to make pumpkin spice cupcakes to serve as the base for the "frosting". The pumpkin cupcakes turned out nice and moist (despite 6000+ foot elevation here). Then it was on to making this topping. Melissa Murphy's recipe is actually for Coconut Pecan Frosting. I omitted the coconut and just did pecan frosting, I mean topping.
This topping consists of sugar, evaporated milk, egg yolks, vanilla and salt. Oh and the pecans of course. I don't know how these simple ingredients turn into such a tasty rich topping. It must be the evaporated milk that lends to such a deep flavor. After simmering and constant stirring for just about 12 minutes the topping thickened up and the pecan pieces went in. A 10-15 minute cooling period and this topping moved into the "spreadable" category.
As I was setting up to start taking photos, Grandma handed me a graham cracker with pecan topping to taste. Oh my! Wow. Wow! I had to take pause because I really wasn't expecting to like this, let alone be "wowed"!
Hubby and Sister, Grandma and Grandpa all had samples on graham crackers too. We all came back for more and I lost track of how many times hubby came back after the third time. This is good stuff people!
You can't go anywhere in Big Bear without seeing hand carved bears and Grandma's place is no exception. We thought this bear, that normally serves a wine bottle holder, needed to sample one of our cupcakes! He clearly gave his stamp of approval.
The pumpkin cupcakes were tasty on their own and even more tasty with the pecan topping. But honestly I enjoyed the pecan topping on the graham crackers the most. It was simple and allowed the full depth flavor in the topping to really come through. There was plenty of topping for 12 cupcakes and still a jar full left over.
For the recipe head over to Eliana's blog A Chica Bakes. Thanks Eliana for choosing such a great recipe! To see the other SMS bakers results this week click here.