Poke Cupcakes are plain white/yellow cupcakes which you “poke” to let Jell-O seep through the cake. The idea apparently originated from Kraft in 1969 to increase their Jell-O sales! You can do the poking on a whole cake, or many cupcakes like what I have done.
For this baking session, I made Billy’s Vanilla Vanilla Cupcakes, and then carried out the normal “poking” procedure using Raspberry Jell-O. My little sister (okay she’s not that little anymore) loves these cupcakes, and she’s one of the toughest food critics at home!
Another point to note is the instructions in the cupcake recipe! It’s different from the typical directions which require you to first cream your butter and sugar, and then add in eggs and pre-mixed dry ingredients. Instead, you will only need 1 mixing bowl, a measuring cup, and mixer! So read the instructions carefully!
BILLY’S VANILLA, VANILLA CUPCAKES
1-3/4 cups cake flour, not self-rising
1-1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch cubes
4 large eggs
1 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees celsius. (The recipe calls for a low temperature, so your cupcakes won’t brown at the top, they will stay white in colour and so suitable for decorating) Line cupcake pans with paper liners; set aside.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer with the paddle attachment (or a mixing bowl), combine flours, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Mix on low speed until combined. Add butter, mixing until just coated with flour.
3. In a large measuring cup, whisk together eggs, milk and vanilla. With mixer on medium speed, add wet ingredients in 3 parts, scraping down sides of bowl before each addition. Beat until ingredients are incorporated but do not overbeat (that’s when you see the mixture separating :()
4. Divide the batter evenly among the liners, filling about two-thirds full. Bake, rotating pan halfway through, until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. (It took about 30 minutes for large cupcakes)
5. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely. Repeat process with remaining batter.
3-oz package JELL-O
1 cup boiling water
1. Use a fork or satay stick to poke holes into your cupcakes.
2. Stir boiling water into gelatin mix until dissolved. Spoon over cupcakes. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.