When I first read the name of this recipe I said “what” and I just had to investigate further. Then my curiosity made me want to see what the finished cupcakes tasted like. This recipe comes from “Cooking With Flowers” by Miche Bacher. This book is fun, colorful and a good source if you like to use edible flowers in your cooking. If you did not know, edible flowers means just that, edible without sprays. Sure I could see the petals of chive blossoms in cupcakes but what about the popcorn?
My chives are in full bloom and ready for this recipe. The cooked popcorn is soaking in milk…
- 2 cups cooked popcorn, I used my popcorn popper with a little oil
- 2 cups milk (I used whole milk)
- 2-1/2 cups flour
- 1-1/2 cups sugar
- 1 tbsp. plus 1 tsp. baking powder
- 3/4 tsp. salt
- petals of 4 chive blossoms, plus more for decorating
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 6 large egg yolks
- 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
Soak the popcorn in milk for about 2 hours. Strain popcorn through a strainer, pressing the soggy popcorn to get all of the good stuff out; discard the solids. I should have tasted the milk to see if any additional flavor was noticeable but I did not.
Preheat the oven to 350°F and line 18 muffin wells with liners. The recipe said it would only make 12 but I made 18.
Put sifted flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and chive petals in a bowl and stir to combine. The chive flowers are difficult to pull so I used twice as many flowers and cut the petals in half. Chive flowers are mildly flavored and I did not taste them at all – I might add more for color and flavor. Add 1-1/4 cups of the strained popcorn milk and softened butter to the flour mixture and beat for about 2 minutes on medium speed.
Drop egg yolks and vanilla into the remaining 3/4 cup strained popcorn milk and mix with a fork to break up the yolks. Beat mixture into the batter a little at a time, occasionally scraping down the sides.
Fill the muffin cups 2/3’s full with batter and bake cupcakes for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of one comes out clean; let cool on a rack. The tops have a tendency to come off if you do not cool them completely.
- 1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheeses, softened
- 3 tbsp. unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla
Beat the above 4 ingredients on medium speed for 3 to 5 minutes, or until no lumps remain. I sifted the sugar! Frost each cupcake and top with a whole chive flower, petals and/or purple sprinkles.
Everyone thought they were delicious, especially the rich, yellow cake. I might play around with a different icing, but this one was good, just a little on the soft side. Refrigerate if needed.
Recipe by cooking with aunt juju
Using my Waring Popcorn maker…
Chives is the common name of Allium schoenoprasum from the family Amaryllidaceae. It is a perennial plant that grows to the height of about 28 inches. The leaves are slender and have a subtle onion essence. The plants bear petite flowers that appear in round clusters whose color is purple or mauve. Use only the flowers and not the stalks they are on.
This is a favorite herb to use in cooking as it pairs so well with many food items. Chives are a great addition to salads, eggs, vegetables and of course as a garnish for vichyssoise or egg drop soup. Add the leaves during the last 5 to 10 minutes of cooking time. Do not use a whole flowerhead but the florets added to taste would be a nice addition to many dishes. Chive flowers make a great garnish and a simple spring bouquet. Cut off the flowering stalks to avoid reseeding as you will have chives come up everywhere.
A good example of a sepal or the base of these chive flowers. When the flower was still a bud the sepal covered it for protection.
Last week the Jr. Master Gardener students dissected flowers to see all of the different parts. I thought it would be fun to do the same with a chive flower. There are a number of stamen (male part); the dark part at the end of each filament is the anther which contains pollen. You can see this in the picture below. The picture on the right shows the ovary with a very tiny pistil attached. I could not get a good picture!