For the cupcakes:
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 3/4 cups cake flour, not self-rising
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tspsalt
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 eggs
- 1/3 cup full-fat sour cream
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup milk, at room temperature
For the frosting:
- 6 tbsp water
- 1 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 6 egg whites
- 3 sticks unsalted butter
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp vegetable shortening
- 2 oz orange candy melts
- Black nonpareils
- Stir together the dry ingredients for the cupcakes.
- Slowly beat in the butter, beating until the mixture has a fine, crumbly texture (about 3 minutes).
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the sour cream, eggs, oil and vanilla. Whisk into the dry ingredients until just combined.
- Add the milk, whisking until lump free.
- Pour the batter into a lined cupcake pan, filling the liners about 2/3 of the way full.
- Bake at 350F for 14-16 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- In a small saucepan, combine the water and sugar for the frosting.
- Bring the syrup to a boil and cook until it’s completely clear.
- While the syrup cooks, whip your egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer until stiff peaks form.
- On high, pour the hot syrup down the side of the bowl and into the egg whites. Continue to whipping until the mixture has cooled to room temperature (about 10 minutes).
- On low, begin adding 1″ slices of the butter until all the butter has been added.
- Whip the frosting on high until it becomes a thick frosting (it’ll look curdled first, but don’t worry. Just keep on whipping).
- Turn the mixer down to low, add the vanilla extract and yellow food coloring, and continue whipping until the frosting is completely smooth.
- In a small bowl, melt your orange candy melts with 1/4 tsp vegetable shortening in the microwave using 10 second increments.
- Pour the melted candy melts into a piping bag, clip a small opening in the tip and pipe your feet and beaks onto parchment paper.
- To assemble the cupcakes, spoon your yellow frosting into a piping bag with a large round tip (I used an Ateco 809).
- Pipe a large dollop onto each cupcake, and then go back and pipe a smaller dollop on top of it.
- Press two black sprinkles into the front of the smaller dollop of frosting, add a candy melt beak and two of the candy melt feet.
Recipe Adapted from The Simple, Sweet Life