Food Truck Friday: NoRa Cupcake Truck

WTNH– Owner Carrie Carella from NoRA Cupcake Company, along with Zoe Leopizzo of Zoescakesandbeyond.com show us how to bake one of their elaborate cupcakes and take us for a visit to the Lil’ NoRA Cupcake Truck!

These are definitely NOT your mother’s cupcake company. NoRA is a “new generation” bakery focused on artistic cupcakes with an emphasis on non-traditional recipes. Our menu features more than 100 flavors, many of which are elaborately decorated and stuffed with unique and unusual fillings. It’s what happens when a cupcake company is born in a bar.

The NoRA bakery and retail store is located at 700 Main Street in Middletown across the street from Eli Cannon’s Tap Room and just north of Rapallo Avenue (that’s North of Rapallo Avenue, NoRA, get it!).  Every Sunday from June through October they are full time vendors at CT’s largest farmers’ market, Coventry Regional Farmers Market!

For more information, go to www.noracupcake.com.

ROAD JAM CUPCAKES RECIPE:

Cake:
2 1/3 cups cake flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup lowfat buttermilk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 large eggs
1 large egg white
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 cup fresh, washed and dried raspberries

Filling:
3 lemons
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 pound unsalted butter, room temperature
4 extra-large eggs
1/2 cup lemon juice (3 to 4 lemons)
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1 bottle of Two Roads Brewery Road Jam beer
½ cup raspberry preserves

Frosting:
1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks or ½ pound), softened (but not melted!) Ideal texture should be like ice cream.
3-4 cups confectioners (powdered) sugar, SIFTED
¼ teaspoon table salt
1 tablespoon black raspberry extract
up to 4 tablespoons milk or heavy cream

Cake Instructions:
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.  Line 12 cupcake tin with cupcake liners.
Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl, stir with a fork to evenly combine the ingredients. In another bowl, whisk the buttermilk, oil, lemon zest, and lemon juice.
Whisk together eggs, egg whites and sugar in a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until it holds ribbons, about 2 minutes. Add the flour mixture in 3 parts, alternating with the buttermilk mixture in 2 parts, beginning and ending with the flour. Stir together by hand until evenly combined and no lumps remain. Add in the raspberries at the very end and do not overmix.
Scoop the batter evenly into the liners. Bake in the center of the oven until a cake tester comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Cool on a baking rack for 10 minutes, then remove the cupcakes out onto a baking rack to cool completely.

Filling Instructions:
Remove the zest of 3 lemons, being careful to avoid the white pith. Put the zest in a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Add the sugar and pulse until the zest is very finely minced into the sugar.
Cream the butter and beat in the sugar and lemon mixture. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and then add the lemon juice and salt. Mix until combined.
Pour the mixture into a 2 quart saucepan and cook over low heat until thickened (about 10 minutes), stirring constantly. The lemon curd will thicken at about 170 degrees F, or just below simmer. Remove from the heat and cool or refrigerate.
Once cooled completely, whisk in the bottle of Two Roads Road Jam and the raspberry preserves and incorporate well.

Frosting Instructions:
Beat butter for a few minutes with a mixer with the paddle attachment on medium speed. Add 3 cups of powdered sugar and turn your mixer on the lowest speed (so the sugar doesn’t blow everywhere) until the sugar has been incorporated with the butter. Increase mixer speed to medium and add black raspberry extract, salt, and 2 tablespoons of milk/cream and beat for 3 minutes. If your frosting needs a more stiff consistency, add remaining sugar. If your frosting needs to be thinned out, add remaining milk 1 tablespoons at a time

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