Fruit Tart Vanilla Cupcakes

This post has been sponsored by Clover Stornetta Farms, and all opinions expressed here are my own.

Fruit Tart Vanilla Cupcakes are light vanilla cupcakes filled with pastry cream and topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit.  They’re fun fruit-tart inspired cupcakes that are perfect for spring and summer!

Fruit Tart Vanilla Cupcakes are light vanilla cupcakes filled with pastry cream and topped with fresh fruit and whipped cream. They're like a fresh fruit tart in cupcake form! @FlavortheMoment

Here we are, the first week of April, and Easter is already over.  That hasn’t stopped my urge to do spring baking because spring has only just begun!  My birthday is this month too, and normally I bake myself some sort of birthday treat.  These Fruit Tart Vanilla Cupcakes would be the perfect cupcakes for a spring birthday, so quite possibly these are an early birthday gift to myself.  I normally go for chocolate, but I would bypass chocolate for these cupcakes any day. 🙂

Fruit Tart Vanilla Cupcakes are light vanilla cupcakes filled with pastry cream and topped with fresh fruit and whipped cream. They're like a fresh fruit tart in cupcake form! @FlavortheMoment

There are (4) delicious components to these cupcakes:

  1. light, fluffy vanilla cake
  2. creamy vanilla bean pastry cream
  3. fresh whipped cream
  4. fresh fruit for decorating

Every one of these components are what make these cupcakes so special!  The cupcakes are filled with pastry cream to give them the full fruit tart effect, and they’re topped with fresh whipped cream and decorative fresh fruit to make them look so festive and perfect for spring.

Fruit Tart Vanilla Cupcakes are light vanilla cupcakes filled with pastry cream and topped with fresh fruit and whipped cream. They're like a fresh fruit tart in cupcake form! @FlavortheMoment

I needed some quality ingredients to make these delicious cupcakes, and I was in good hands with Clover Stornetta Farms.  I used their milk, butter, eggs, and heavy whipping cream for these cupcakes, which is a big reason why they turned out as perfectly as they did.  Quality is key, after all. 🙂

Clover Stornetta Products Collage

I trust Clover because Clover milk comes from family farms in Sonoma and Marin counties that go through great measures to ensure that the cleanest milk possible is delivered.  The numbers don’t lie — check them out here.

Clover’s quality goes even further with it’s North Coast Excellence Certified (NCEC) program.  This program was established by Clover to set standards for family-owned dairies to follow sustainable agriculture practices and tend small herds on spacious ranches where the cows are healthy and treated well.  The cows are not given the synthetic growth hormone rBST, which is very important to me.  For more about the NCEC program, click here.

I also love that Clover goes to great lengths to ensure that the cows are treated humanely.  In fact, Clover was the first U. S. dairy to be certified by the American Humane Society in November of 2000  for their animal welfare program, American Humane Certified.  Click here to read more!

Now, let’s discuss these cupcakes.  I adapted this vanilla cupcake recipe from my Red Velvet Cheesecake Cupcakes recipe, and I’m so happy with how light and fluffy they are.  I’ll be using them as the base for many recipes to come, so be warned. 🙂

vanilla-cupcakes

When I have recipes like this that have multiple components, I like to break them up to make the process a lot easier.  For starters, I made the pastry cream two days in advance as it needs at least several hours to cool at room temperature and chill in the fridge.  The cupcakes can also be made up to a day ahead, so that the day you plan to serve them, all you have to do is fill them with the pastry cream, frost them, and decorate them.

To fill the cupcakes, I used a paring knife and cut out a circle a little over an inch wide out of the top of the cupcake.  The knife was at an angle, and I stopped about a 1/2″ from the bottom of the cupcake — we don’t want a hole in the bottom so the filling runs out.  Fill the cupcake with about a teaspoon of pastry cream, then cut the pointed end off of the piece of cake that you removed from the center so that you can place the top over the pastry cream filling.  From there, whip your cream and frost each cupcake with about a tablespoon or so of the whipped cream.

vanilla-cupcake-collage

From there, it’s time for the fun part — decorating!  I piped a border of fresh whipped cream around the edges of each cupcake and filled them with sliced kiwi, strawberries, an orange segment, and a bit of blackberry.  You can use any type of fruit and get as creative as you like with the decorations.  This is a great place to let the kids help, too. 🙂

Classic fruit tarts are always finished with apricot or red currant jam brushed over the fruit to make it glossy and help preserve the fruit.  I heated a couple of tablespoons of apricot jam with about 1 tablespoon of water to thin it out, and brushed the fruit with it.

Fruit Tart Vanilla Cupcakes are light vanilla cupcakes filled with pastry cream and topped with fresh fruit and whipped cream. They're like a fresh fruit tart in cupcake form! @FlavortheMoment

These Fruit Tart Vanilla Cupcakes are the epitome of spring with bright colors, fresh flavors, and light texture.  They’re perfect for baby showers, Mother’s Day, and any type of spring and summer entertaining.  Just be ready for your guests to ooh and aah over their beauty.  These cupcakes are what spring dessert is all about. 🙂

To find out even more about Clover Stornetta Farms, click here to like their Facebook page!

Fruit Tart Vanilla Cupcakes are light vanilla cupcakes filled with pastry cream and topped with fresh fruit and whipped cream. They're like a fresh fruit tart in cupcake form! @FlavortheMoment

Fruit Tart Vanilla Cupcakes
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Fruit Tart Vanilla Cupcakes are light vanilla cupcakes filled with pastry cream and topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit. They're fun fruit-tart inspired cupcakes that are perfect for spring and summer!
Author:
Serves: 12 cupcakes
Ingredients
For the pastry cream:
  • 1 cup Clover Stornetta Farms whole milk
  • ⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste (or just vanilla extract)
  • 1 tablespoon Clover Stornetta Farms unsalted butter, softened
For the cupcakes:
  • 1½ cups all purpose flour
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (4 ounces) Clover Stornetta Farms unsalted butter
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large Clover Stornetta Farms eggs
  • ¾ cup Clover Stornetta Farms whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the whipped cream:
  • 1 cup Clover Stornetta Farms heavy whipping cream
  • 1½ tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the fruit topping:
  • 4-6 strawberries, stemmed, halved, and sliced thinly
  • ½ navel orange peeled and segmented, or use mandarin oranges
  • (2) kiwi, peeled, halved, and sliced thinly
  • (4) blackerries, cut into thirds
  • 2 tablespoons apricot jam
  • 1 tablespoon water
Instructions
Prepare the pastry cream:
  1. Fill a large bowl with ice, and enough water to fill the bowl halfway. Place a medium bowl in it with a fine mesh strainer nearby along with a piece of buttered wax paper. Set aside.
  2. Place the milk in a medium saucepan and heat over medium low heat until just before it begins to boil.
  3. While the milk heats, place the sugar and egg yolks in a medium bowl and whisk until well incorporated. Add the flour and whisk vigorously until smooth. When the milk is hot enough, add a few tablespoons of it to the egg mixture while whisking constantly to temper the eggs. Add ⅓ of the mixture in a slow steady stream while whisking constantly. Once ⅓ has been added, add the rest all at once while whisking constantly until combined.
  4. Place the mixture back in the saucepan and cook over medium heat, whisking constantly to prevent lumps, until the mixture begins to boil, about 8-10 minutes. Continue to cook for another minute until very thick. Remove from heat and whisk in the vanilla and softened butter, then place in the strainer over the bowl set over the ice bath and strain to remove any lumps or bits of egg. Cover the pastry cream with the buttered wax paper to prevent a skin from forming and allow to cool at room temperature. Once cooled, remove from the ice bath and place in the refrigerator until ready to use. For best results, make in advance and store in the fridge for 4-6 hours or overnight.
Prepare the cupcakes:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a standard muffin pan with 12 paper liners.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt until combined. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar together on medium speed about 3-5 minutes until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber scraper. Turn the mixer on low speed and add the eggs one at a time until incorporated.
  4. Mix the vanilla into the milk. With the mixer on low, add the flour and milk alternately, beginning and ending with the flour, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  5. Divide the batter evenly between the paper liners so that each is ⅔ full. Bake on the middle rack of the oven 18-20 minutes or until the top of the cupcakes spring back when pressed gently. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then remove from the pan and cool completely.
Prepare the whipped cream:
  1. Place the cream, sugar, and vanilla in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat on medium high speed until stiff peaks form, being careful not to over whip.
Decorate the cupcakes:
  1. Using a paring knife, cut a 1" circle in the center of each cupcake, cutting at an angle toward the center to about ½" from the bottom. Remove the cake and cut off the pointed bottom leaving just a thin circle of cake to cover the pastry cream filling. Fill the center with about 1 teaspoon of pastry cream, and cover with the thin circle of cake (you will have pastry cream left over). Once filled, frost each cupcake with about 1 tablespoon of the whipped cream frosting. Pipe the remaining cream around the edge of the cupcake for a border (I used a Wilton 1M tip).
  2. Top each cupcake decoratively with the sliced fruit.
  3. Heat the apricot jam and water in a microwave safe bowl for about 20-30 seconds or until thin enough to spread (add more water if necessary). Brush the jam gently over the top of the fruit with a pastry brush to give it a glossy finish (this also helps preserve the fruit). Serve the cupcakes, and enjoy!
Notes
The pastry cream may be made a few days in advance, and the cupcakes may be made one day in advance to make this process even easier.
Leftover cupcakes should be stored in an air tight container in the refrigerator.
Recipe by Flavor the Moments.

Fruit Tart Vanilla Cupcakes are light vanilla cupcakes filled with pastry cream and topped with fresh fruit and whipped cream. They're like a fresh fruit tart in cupcake form! @FlavortheMoment