Fresh Raspberry Cupcakes

INGREDIENTS
 
• 3 cups raspberries
• 3 tbs sugar, for the raspberries
• 1/4 cup half & half, at room temperature
• 6 large egg whites, room temperature
• 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
• 2 1/4 cup cake flour, sifted
• 1 3/4 cup sugar
• 4 tsp baking powder
• 1 tsp salt
• 12 Tbsp unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), softened
 
DIRECTIONS
 
Three hours before baking, toss your raspberries with 3 tbs white sugar.  Mash with a fork or potato masher. Let them sit in a bowl and become nice and juicy (3 hours time). Once ready, puree this mixture in your food processor. Reserve ¾ cup of this puree for the cupcakes, 3 tbs for the Butter Cream.
 
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare your baking dishes: coat inside with butter and flour. I made 24 cupcakes.

In small bowl, combine puree, milk, egg, vanilla and mix with fork until well blended. In bowl of stand mixer (or with a hand mixer), add sifted flour, sugar, baking powder and salt and mix to combine. Continue beating and add butter. Mix until combined and resembling moist crumbs.
Add liquids and beat at medium speed for about 1 minute or until full and evenly combined. Stop mixer to scrape down the sides of the bowl and hand beat for 30 more seconds. Divide the batter evenly among the pans or into your cupcake liners about half way.

Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (time will vary) Let cupcakes rest in pan for about 10 minutes and turn out onto wire racks. Let cupcakes cool completely (about 2 hours).

INGREDIENTS Raspberry Buttercream 
 
• 3 tbs fresh raspberry puree
• 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, firm and slightly cold
• 3 1/2 - 4  cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
• 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS
 
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together butter and salt on medium speed until light and fluffy. Reduce mixer speed and slowly add confectioners' sugar; beat until well combined. Add vanilla and 3 tablespoons raspberry puree.