Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cupcakes (Flower Moon 2012, just in time for Beltain)

I’m writing this the day after Flower Moon kicked off.
I woke up sick and have spent most of today alternately sleeping the sleep of the flu-bound and feeling twitchy in the stomach regions. It’s now pushing 3pm and, in the way of people who are hungry and trying to avoid eating anything, I’ve made a batch of cupcakes.

Anyway. Cupcakes. What on Earth do they have to do with Flower Moon?

Well, readers, I’ll tell you. 😀

Flower Moon is the one that typically overlaps with Beltain/MayDay. It’s also the one where we start getting fresh fruit and veggies again BUT those fruits and veggies are pretty limitted:
Fiddlehead greens
Asparagus (not for a while yet)
Rhubarb
Dandelion greens
Stinging Nettle greens (yes, really — I’ll post a recipe for nettle soup in a little bit)
Wild Leeks – aka “ramps” or, sometimes, “bunching onions” (not for a while yet)

… There are also mushrooms and, sometimes, fresh hot-house grape tomatoes and hoop-house herbs, BUT at this time of year, we’re pretty-much down to the dregs of the Local Winter Stores stuff (we’ve been eating a lot of beet salad, for example).

So, when it comes time to do my May Day feast – in so far as I do one – I typically go for something that can be made with (a) jams, and (b) dry goods like flour and baking powder. Between that, and the associations between Beltain and the Fae[1], I figured that having a fairy cake party would be appropriate.

Today’s batch of cupcakes are peanut-butter chocolate-chip, with (soon-to-be-added) peanut-butter frosting. However, a chocolate-cherry, or vanilla-apricot, cupcake that uses jam in lieu of straight sugar for the sweetener, would work beautifully for any Beltain party (or spur of the moment baking spree) that you have coming up.

Here’s my recipe for the cupcakes I made today:

~*~

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cupcakes

INGREDIENTS
2C flour
1/2 C cocoa
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
pinch salt

1/2 C sugar
1/2 C yoghurt
1/4 C peanut butter
1/4 C margarine
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 C chocolate chips (you can use peanut butter chips, too, if you want to)

DIRECTIONS
Preheat the oven to 350F
Combine the dry ingredients (not including the sugar) in a large bowl
In a smaller bowl, combine the wet ingredients and the sugar and blend until smooth
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until a stiff (ish) dough forms
Add the chocolate chips and mix/kneed them into the dough
Spoon the dough in to paper-lined muffin cups
Bake at 350 for about 45 minutes (or until they smell done and can pass the Fork Test)
Allow to cool on a wire rack
Frost with peanut butter frosting (or whatever you happen to want to use)
Serve and enjoy. 😀

Peanut Butter Frosting
1 C icing sugar
1/2 C peanut butter
1/3 C margarine

Combine in a small bowl and mix (I use a fork) until smooth. Add extra peanut butter and/or extra margarine if the consistency is too dry.

~*~

So there you go, folks. You can sub out the peanut butter and use any nut or seed butter that takes your fancy (I recommend hazelnut, cashew, or pumpkin seed butter. Pumpkin Seed is particularly neat, as it gives you a chance to do green[3] icing without using food colouring).

TTFN,
Meliad the Birch Maiden. 🙂

[1] My young lady, who is originally from in around Oxford, wrote a poem about that, and being homesick.

[3] Kind of an olive colour, to give you an idea of what to expect.

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