Egg Nog Cupcakes with Bourbon Caramel
Yield: 18-20 cupcakes
 
Ingredients
  • 1⅓ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. freshly ground nutmeg
  • ¼ cup dark rum or bourbon (optional)
  • 1 cup eggnog
  • ¼ cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup sugar
  • For Caramel:
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup water
  • 6 tablespoons butter cut into small pieces
  • ⅜ cup heavy cream
  • ⅛ cup bourbon
  • For Frosting:
  • 2 sticks of butter
  • 4½ cups powdered sugar
  • 4 tablespoons egg nog
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • pinch of salt
Instructions
To make the Cupcakes:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350? F. Line cupcake pans with paper liners. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and nutmeg; whisk to combine. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the rum, eggnog, vegetable oil, vinegar, and sugar. Beat on medium-low speed until well blended. Add in the dry ingredients and mix on low speed just until incorporated.
  2. Divide the batter between the prepared cupcake liners, filling the cups ⅔ full. Bake 22-24 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
For Caramel:
  1. Whisk together the sugar and water in a medium saucepan and whisk over high heat until sugar is dissolved. Don't stir the mixture but gently swirl the pan until it has reached a dark brown amber color. At that point whisk in the butter. (Careful- it will bubble up- don't burn yourself.) Remove from the heat and whisk in the cream and bourbon. Allow caramel to cool in the fridge before filling/drizzling.
For Frosting:
  1. Using an electric mixer, beat the softened butter until it is creamy and pale. Gradually add the powdered sugar until thick and creamy. Add the egg nog one tablespoon at a time until the texture seems right. Add the nutmeg and salt and beat for another minute or so.
To Assemble:
  1. Once the cupcakes have cooled, scoop a tablespoon-size amount out of each one with a small spoon or paring knife. Fill with caramel, pipe on frosting and drizzle with remaining caramel. Sprinkle with a dash of nutmeg and enjoy!
Recipe by The Baker Chick at http://www.thebakerchick.com/2011/12/egg-nog-cupcakes-with-bourbon-caramel/