pear and black sesame cupcakes

Pear and Black Sesame Cupcakes

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup almond flour or almond meal
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup black sesame seeds
1 1/3 cups sugar
Raw sugar to sprinkle
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
3/4 cup buttermilk
1 (medium) firm but ripe Bosc pear, peeled, cored, cut into 1/4-inch cubes

Preheat oven to 325°. Line a cupcake tray with 18 cupcake cases.

Whisk 1 1/2 cups flour, almond flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and 2 tablespoons of black sesame seeds.

Grind the remaining 1/2 cup of sesame seeds in spice mill to form a thick paste, about 2 minutes (I don’t have a spice mill so I ground the sesame seeds in a food processor and then finished off in a a pestle and mortar).

Beat the butter and 1 1/3 cups sugar in a large bowl until well combined, 2–3 minutes. Add sesame paste and beat, occasionally scraping down sides of bowl, until blended, 1–2 minutes. Add egg and egg yolk. Beat until pale and fluffy, 3–4 minutes. On low speed, beat in flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with buttermilk in 2 additions, beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Toss pear with remaining 2 tablespoons flour in a small bowl; fold into batter.

Spoon the batter into the cupcake cases and sprinkle with raw sugar. Bake until a skewer comes out clean, approximately 20 – 25 minutes.

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