Saturday, January 15, 2011

Gingerbread Popcorn Cupcakes - for Mystery Box Cupcake Challenge #7

When I looked at this month's Mystery Box challenge and saw the familiar red and white striped box, I was stunned at the fortuitous timing. I am not usually a popcorn fan, but I had just (the day before) experienced popcorn nirvana for the first time: Gingerbread Popcorn. That's right. Sweet, spicy, crunchy, tooth-rotting goodness. A dentist's worst nightmare, but the hit of the New Year's party I brought it to. Now this is some popcorn I can truly love.

Obviously, this had to inspire a cupcake. Although I thought my holiday cooking spree had finally ended, I decided to welcome a new year of baking with these Gingerbread Popcorn Cupcakes. They are gingerbread cupcakes with a butterscotch swirl (for just a hint of buttery popcorn-like flavor) and topped with cream cheese frosting and, of course, gingerbread popcorn. The butterscotch may sound like an odd thing to add to a gingerbread cupcake, but it makes them richer and adds a complexity that really highlights the gingerbread flavor quite well.