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Curried Cupcakes

I love spicy and sweet together and this cupcake excels with that flavor combination by melding a softly sweet vanilla with the rich spice of a homemade garam masala mix (I make mine with chilies so it is hotter than I think is conventional--if you were making this with a commercial mix, you might want to warm it up with some chilies). To top it I mixed up a coconut buttercream and sprinkled it with lightly toasted coconut blended with a little more garam masala. I almost tried to work some pear into this experimental cupcake recipe because I love garam masala baked pears, but I didn't want to go back out to the store. Next time maybe I'll bake some pear to add on top of this cupcake, which I assure you I will be making again. It was the perfect ending to our impromptu dinner party of sweet potato curry, chana dal and spiced basmati rice with apricots and pistachios. I think dinners should always be developed around the dessert that you plan to serve!

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Taken on January 21, 2007