As juicy and seductively coloured as they are, raspberries are often overlooked, at least by those who prefer something more fragrant or something with more health benefits (strawberries and blueberries respectively, for example).
However, for some reason, I had the urge to bake with these adorable little red fruit and, after entertaining a pair of black swans that dropped by, spent the afternoon yesterday making a batch of raspberry, applesauce and almond cupcakes.
Raspberries have a fairly subtle flavour and don’t tend to keep as well as other berries. They also bruise very easily, so handle with care! This here is an eggless and butterless cupcake recipe, so it does a good job of cutting your cholesterol consumption. It does call for some milk though, so if you want to turn this into a vegan recipe, try replacing it with soy or almond milk and see how it goes.
Lightly crisp on top when fresh out of the oven, these pillowy cupcakes have a lovely texture thanks to the addition of ground almonds. The batter is a dream to work with and it yields a soft, moist and tender crumb once baked. Each bite almost melts in your mouth. The light tangy flavour of the raspberries contrasts well with the sweet creaminess of the cake.
Raspberry, Applesauce & Almond Cupcakes
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cups almond meal
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
a pinch of salt
1/2 cup grapeseed oil (or canola oil)
1/2 cup raw caster sugar
1/2 cup applesauce
1/2 cup milk, cold
2 cups fresh raspberries
some flaked almonds, for sprinkling
* Use low fat milk and unsweetened applesauce for healthier cupcakes.
* If you don’t have half a cup of applesauce on hand, substitute with 2 eggs (lightly whisked).
- Preheat oven to 180°C and line a mini muffin tray with paper cases.
- In a medium-sized bowl, combine flour, almond meal, baking powder, baking soda and pinch of salt. Mix well, set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine grapeseed oil, sugar and applesauce until smooth.
- Slowly add the dry ingredients and the milk into the applesauce mixture in several alternating increments, lightly folding with a spatula after each addition. Take care not to overmix.
- Gently fold in the raspberries.
- Spoon mixture into prepared paper cases until almost full. Sprinkle the tops with the flaked almonds.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the tops start to brown and crack a little.
- Remove from oven and let cupcakes stand in tin for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.