Royal Rose-Scented Cupcakes

A royal baby!

A few weeks ago, I was thrilled when Kate Middleton had her second child. To me, she is the epitome of class and style. I don't know why, but I want her and Prince William's marriage (and family) to succeed. They seem like "good neighbors", like you'd want to have them over for a barbecue or something, haha.

I love the name Charlotte Elizabeth Diana - it gives tribute to three people in the baby's lineage: Prince Charles, Queen Elizabeth, and the late Princess Diana. I love sentimental family names!  I've long been thinking about naming my kids after family members.

What's more royal (read: fancy) than rose-scented cupcakes?! One has to be careful when using flowers in baking because you don't want the cakes to taste too soapy.  I bought my dried roses at a local spice shop, but some specialty grocery stores carry them too.

Royal Rose-Scented Cupcakes
Cakes adapted from The Pretty Bee

1 1/2 c. organic flour
3/4 c. organic cane sugar
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/2 c. cold water
1/4 c. champagne, or more water
1/2 c. coconut oil, melted
2 1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. lemon juice

For the simple syrup
1/4 c. organic cane sugar
1/2 c. water
1/4 c. dried roses (culinary grade)

For the frosting
1 c. organic non-hydrogenated shortening, like Spectrum
1 tsp. vanilla (or rose extract, if you have it)
3-4 c. vegan powdered sugar

vegan sprinkles for decorating, get them from Pink Peppercorn or India Tree

Preheat the oven to 375° F.  Line a muffin tin with 12 cupcake liners.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients: flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt.  Stir.  Create a well in the middle of dry ingredients.  Set aside.

Make sure all of your wet ingredients are ready to go.  You want to make sure the reaction goes appropriately, so add them all in at the same time.  Pour them into the well and use some elbow grease and a wooden spoon to stir (or use your mixer).  Stir until everything is combined and the batter thickens up.

Fill your cupcake liners about half-way full - these cupcakes puff up a decent amount.  Bake the cupcakes for 20-25 minutes, until you can insert a toothpick and it comes out clean.

Allow the cupcakes to cool completely.  As they're cooling, use a toothpick to poke a few holes in the top of the cakes.  It will help the syrup soak in.

For the simple syrup: combine the syrup ingredients in a small saucepan over medium high heat.  Bring the mixture to a boil and then lower the heat to a simmer.  Make sure all of the sugar has dissolved.  Once it reduces slightly, remove it from the heat to cool.  Strain out the rose buds.

When it's cooled, brush a coating of syrup on each cupcake.  Once it dries and/or soaks in, brush them with a second coat.  

***TIP*** If you have some simple syrup left over, save it for your own cocktails!

For the frosting: cream the shortening and flavoring in a large mixing bowl.  Gradually add the powdered sugar in, a cup at a time, until the buttercream is somewhat stiff.  Place the icing in a piping bag and frost your cupcakes.

Add some embellishments - whether it's small rose buds or classy sprinkles. These cupcakes will be the talk of the town!