Strawberry Balsamic Filled Cupcakes
Here's a twist on Grandma's strawberry shortcake. This combination of classic and sophisticated flavors is a perfect pairing for the end of any summer meal. Be sure to refrigerate the remaining berry-balsamic reduction to use on toast. —Kate Brown, St. Michael, Minnesota
Total TimePrep: 45 min. + cooling Bake: 20 min. + cooling
- 1 package yellow cake mix (regular size) or angel food cake mix
- 2 cups fresh strawberries, sliced
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 carton (8 ounces) mascarpone cheese
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract
- Prepare and bake cake mix according to package directions for cupcakes. Cool completely.
- Place strawberries, sugar, vinegar and thyme in a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium; cook, uncovered, until thickened, 12-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cool completely.
- Beat topping ingredients on medium speed until stiff peaks form, about 2 minutes (do not overmix). Refrigerate, covered, while filling cupcakes.
- To fill cupcakes, cut a 1-in. circle (1-in. deep) in the top of each cupcake; remove cut portion and set aside. Spoon 1 teaspoon strawberry mixture into each opening; replace cutout portions. Refrigerate the filled cupcakes for 10 minutes.
- Pipe or dollop topping over cupcakes. Refrigerate until serving.