August 18th, 2008
Chocolate Banana Cupcake -tender cupcakes made with overripe bananas topped with bittersweet chocolate ganache and white chocolate curls. Price available upon request.
the cupcake and muffin conundrum
This banana cupcake recipe is originally for a large-scale cake. I tweaked it a bit—substituted an ingredient or so with another—and baked the batter in cupcake tins. Almost any cake recipe can be converted into cupcakes. After all, cupcakes are really just miniature cakes baked in a cup-sized mold. What about muffins then? They do look similar to cupcakes. What distinguishes one from the other?
Google “cupcake versus muffin” and you will find myriad discussions on this topic, from the scientific (difference in basic formula) to the hilarious ( “if you threw a cupcake against the wall, you would hear something of a “poof”; if you threw a muffin, you would hear a “thud!”).
The list of differences goes on. Here are my own conclusions:
1. Cupcakes are fancy, muffins are homely;
2. Cupcakes are frosted, muffins are “naked”;
3. Cupcakes are airier and lighter in texture, muffins are denser;
4. Cupcake batter involves longer creaming, muffin batter is mixed only until dry ingredients are moistened;
5. Both cupcakes and muffins are good!
Some also say that muffins are eaten for breakfast while cupcakes are reserved for dessert, but who’s to stop you from having a cupcake for breakfast? Any which way, cupcakes and muffins are both special treats and they do share one thing in common, after all. If one is not careful, devouring large quantities of muffins or cupcakes are likely to result in the dreaded “muffin top.” Ouch!