Adult Indulgence

Okay, I am going to add an adult Easter treat now. Although fresh strawberries are a ways off from being in season now, I have omitted strawberries but have replaced the flavor with strawberry extract AND rum. Although you may not enjoy real rum in your cupcakes, every supermarket carries rum extract. Or you can simply omit altogether. (It was the Yankee in me that added rum to begin with)

Dark Strawberry-Rum Easter Cupcakes
I adore a cream cheese frosting with more rum flavor for these cupcakes, I am giving you a little break. By adding some almond extract, it is a great addition to the taste of cream cheese and the rum in the cupcakes.

1 1/4 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons cocoa powder
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup milk
2 eggs
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon strawberry extract
2 tablespoons dark rum(or use 1 teaspoon rum extract)
1 teaspoon red food coloring
1 teaspoon lemon juice

Buttery Cream Cheese Frosting:

12 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 sticks butter, softened
1 teaspoon almond extract
2 cups sifted powdered sugar

Preheat the oven to 350-degrees F. Line 1 (12-cup) muffin pan with cupcake papers. Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder and cocoa in a large bowl. In another bowl, beat together the oil, milk, eggs, food coloring and extract and lemon juice until well combined. Add the dry ingredients and blend until smooth. Divide the batter among the cupcake ups evenly and bake for 20-22 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool completely before frosting.

Buttery Cream Cheese Frosting:

Beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla in a large bowl until smooth. Add the powdered sugar, on low-speed, and continue beating until light and fluffy. Place in a large baggie with a corner snipped out and pipe decoratively. Mix 1 cup granulated sugar with 5 drops of red food coloring well. Sprinkle over each cupcake. Add more food coloring, a drop at a time, to desired color.