Complexity: Advanced


  • Vanilla Cupcakes
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon table salt
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 stick), room temperature
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 1 large egg , room temperature
  • 2 large egg yolks , room temperature
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon coffee
  • 1 ounce marsala wine
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 c butter
  • 8 ounces mascarpone cheese, room temperature
  • milk ( optional )
  • confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder, for dusting


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add butter, sour cream, egg and egg yolks, and vanilla; beat at medium speed until smooth. Scrape down sides of bowl and mix by hand until smooth and no flour pockets remain.
  3. Divide batter evenly. Bake until cupcake tops are pale gold and toothpick or skewer inserted into center comes out clean, 20 to 24 minutes.
  4. FOR THE SYRUP: Stir together coffee, the liquor, and sugar until sugar is dissolved. Let cool. Pour the syrup over the cupcakes. I flip them over in the dish filled with the syrup,(this can be messy though,because of how light and fluffy the cake is ) . Allow cupcakes to absorb liquid for 30 minutes.
  5. FOR THE FROSTING: With an electric mixer on medium speed, whisk together the butter and mascarpone until light and fluffy . Add the confectioners sugar little by little until you get a desired consistency. Frost the cupcakes and dust on the cocoa powder.