black sesame cupcakes

we ate velveeta and talked about messiaen. i offered a cupcake to the police man at the sobriety checkpoint and he declined it. i think i wore my apron cupcake wars costume for 10 minutes before taking it off, and then we said goodnight to the cows as we left emily and evan's. it was great! how was your halloween?? get any good candy? i got a jumbo tootsie roll. it was v nostalgic and chewy. almost as nostalgic as the velveeta.

tonight we have our first curling class!!!! i cannot contain my excitement. i've never done curled before. our town has a curling place (rink? stadium? school? i don't know what you call it) and after missing the beginner's level sign up last year, we jumped on signing up this year because how could you not try it at least once when you live in the north pole? do any of you curl? quick, give me some tips. i have no idea what i've gotten myself into.

here is a recipe that i contributed to food52's new baking book! it is an updated version of these little guys. they're nutty, not too sweet, and nestled in this book alongside all sorts of fun recipes, like marian's tomato soup cake and phyllis' brown butter cupcake brownies. these cupcakes are paired with matcha frosting in the book (you can find that recipe here) but for my halloween costume i stuck with a basic vanilla buttercream (like the one here) and decorated them on the theme of... sprinkles and teddybears? i don't know, i had trouble thinking up a good cupcake wars theme and there was marzipan and a teddybear cookie cutter sitting right next to me.

black sesame cupcakes

makes 12


1 1/4 c all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 tb unsweetened cocoa
6 tb black sesame seeds, toasted and ground in a spice grinder to a fine crumb
1/2 c unsalted buter, softened
1/4 c tahini
3/4 c sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 c milk


Preheat oven to 350ºf. Line a cupcake tin with cupcake liners and set aside.

Whisk together all dry ingredients in a medium bowl and set aside.

In a large bowl with an electric mixer, cream together butter, tahini, and sugar until pale and creamy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each. Add the vanilla. Reduce the speed to low and then gradually mix in the dry ingredients and then beat in the milk. Scoop into the cupcake tins and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Begin checking for doneness at 18 minutes. 

Let cool for 5 minutes in the pan and then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.

frost as desired with matcha buttercream (this recipe makes enough for 24 cupcakes, so you only need half!) or vanilla buttercream. enjoy!