*Looking for a different kind of beer batter cupcake? Try these Country Cupcakes infused with PBR!
NOTE: A huge thank you to everyone for sending in all your great ideas for what makes a “manly” cupcake!! The response was overwhelming, and gave me immense inspiration from which to draw. In fact, I had so many of your ideas floating around in my mind that I decided to try two variations of “beer batter dudecakes.” Stay tuned for Part 2!
In a perfect world, cupcakes would be a gender-neutral subject. After all, the human palate for great tasting food is universal. Sure, preferences vary from person to person, but we can all agree that gender has nothing to do with what we do and don’t like.
In an effort to break down the gender barrier and dispel the notion that baking (and devouring) cupcakes is just for girls, I concocted a couple recipes perfectly fit for a dude. No pink, no flowers, no glitter, no pearls. Just bold ingredients pushing bold flavors. And bacon.
These aren’t the kind of cupcakes you pop like pills by the dozen; they’re a novelty, something to boast about having tried, and something to cross off that manly-man bucket list. They’re great as a happy ending to a night of grilling out. They’re a conversation starter. A kick in the pants. A death metal symphony of badass goods in and around your mouth.
Since I couldn’t pour motor oil and fresh deer meat into cupcake batter, I’m giving you the next best thing: craft beer, bacon, capsaicin (male aphrodisiac, anyone?), and sweet, smooth maple. If Epic Meal Time and the Most Interesting Man in the World procreated, these would be the resulting caloric and tangible brilliance.
The craft beer is Belgian-brewed pale ale Delirium Tremens. If not properly managed, delirium tremens (the condition symptomatic of acute alcohol withdrawal, not the beer) can lead to death. If an 8.5% alcohol beer that takes the name of a potentially fatal condition doesn’t say, “I laugh in the face of danger, so watch me flex my man muscles,” I don’t know what does. With vanilla and warm fruit notes lingering after your first sip of the bottled DTs, it’s no surprise Delirium Tremens was named “Best Beer in the World” in 2008 at the World Beer Championships in Chicago. Those same sweet notes punch through in the cake, even after all the alcohol has baked off.
The bacon is baked beneath a thick, sizzling layer of brown sugar, pecans, and a good kick of cayenne pepper to turbo-charge the carnal experience of sinking your teeth into deliciously crispy pig flesh. Fresh from the oven, the praline bacon stands atop the cupcake like a phallic symbol. Subtle, right?
And finally, the sticky sweet maple buttercream pulls the rest of the cupcake elements together in a raw, unrefined packaged of salty-sweet heat. So pour yourself a stiff drink, turn on a Bond movie, and dig in, [ladies and] gentlemen.
These make a great Father’s Day treat for your favorite Papa Bear in your life, too!
Beer Batter Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream and Praline Bacon
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup Delirium Tremens beer, room temperature (this is important-- melted butter will curdle if it's mixed with cold beer)
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons vanilla extract
- 3 large eggs
- 3/4 cup sour cream
- This is where I shall pause and say, if it suits you, don't bother with the remaining steps-- just get drunk off cupcake batter.
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 4 ounces (half brick) cream cheese, softened
- 6 cups confectioner's sugar
- 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon maple sugar (I used India Tree brand, found at Whole Foods)
- 2 Tablespoons pure maple syrup (I used Stonewall Kitchen brand)
- 1/2 pound thick cut bacon
- 3 Tablespoons light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup halved pecans
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or more, if you want a greater kick)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and place cupcake liners in muffin tin
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, baking soda, and salt.
- In a separate large mixing bowl, combine Delirium Tremens, melted butter, and vanilla. Beat in eggs one at time. Mix in sour cream until thoroughly combined and smooth. Gradually mix the dry ingredients into the wet mixture, whisking well as you go.
- Fill muffin tin until each is 3/4 full. Bake for about 19-21 minutes, until the tops are golden brown.
- Remove cupcakes from tin and allow to cool completely.
- While cupcakes are cooling, combine cream cheese and butter in a medium mixing bowl and beat until light and fluffy
- Add powdered sugar two cups at a time, beating well between each
- Add maple sugar, vanilla extract, and maple syrup and beat
- Spoon buttercream into a piping bag and pipe onto cupcakes
- Place bacon strips in a baking dish and bake at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes
- Pulverize pecan halves in a food processor
- Dump pecan crumbs into a small bowl and add brown sugar and cayenne, mix with a spoon until blended
- After bacon has been baking for 20 minutes, remove from oven, generously sprinkle pecan mixture over the bacon, place back in oven, and bake for another 5 minutes.
- Remove bacon from oven, break up into smaller pieces, and stick them into the iced cupcakes! (people might make assumptions about you based on how big your bacon is-- go big or go home)
- *Also, you'll probably have leftover bacon-- try it crumbled on top of ice cream, tossed in a salad with blue cheese and a vinaigrette, or as is!
Parting words: I understand that you might want the whole batch of cupcakes for yourself, but please refrain from peeing on them to mark your territory unless you plan to reap what you sew, bro.
Ready for part 2? Click here to see what’s in store!