Butternut Squash Cakettes with Pearl Sugar

These bite-sized homemade snacks will be popular finger food at any picnic. This recipe yields a dozen cakettes.

Ingredients

1 cup roasted butternut squash, mashed (or pumpkin puree)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice blend
2 large eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup pure olive oil
1/4 cup pearl sugar (This can be found at most Scandinavian markets.)

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350 F.
Toss half-inch cubed raw butternut squash in a little olive oil and kosher salt and turn out onto a baking sheet. Roast for 25 minutes, flipping halfway through with a spatula. Allow to cool. Mash and set aside.
Prepare a standard muffin tin by buttering the individual molds.
In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and pumpkin spice.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, mashed butternut squash, granulated sugar, dark brown sugar and pure olive oil.
Gently incorporate the dry mixture into the wet mixture, stirring gently and being careful not to overmix.
Fill the muffin molds 2/3 full and sprinkle the tops generously with pearl sugar. Pearl sugar is very hard and will not melt at the high baking temperature. It adds a beautiful decoration and sweet coarse texture to the top of the cakettes. Bake 20-22 minutes.
Allow cakettes to cool completely on a cooling rack (about 30 minutes) before packing them safely for the picnic.

Tip: Try substituting pure olive oil when a recipe calls for canola or vegetable oil. Pure olive oil has a very mild flavor and is loaded with wonderful health benefits like Omega-3s. Also, it ensures an added level of moistness to whatever you are baking, taking the decadence to the extreme. 

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