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+ servings

Sour Cream, Almond, & Saffron Cupcakes w/ Cardamom & Sumo Orange Cream Cheese Frosting

Sounds complicated. Fancy enough for a special occasion. But I promise you it isn't any more complicated than your regular chocolate cupcake.
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Servings 8


  • For the Cupcakes:
  • 4 oz unsalted raw almonds
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter softened
  • 3/4 cup semolina flour
  • generous 1/4 tsp saffron threads
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • pinch salt
  • 1/4 milk
  • 1/2 tsp sumo orange zest
  • 2 tbsp sumo orange juice
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 oz sour cream
  • For the Frosting:
  • 8 oz cream cheese
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter softened
  • 1 tsp cardamom
  • zest of 1 sumo orange
  • 1 lb powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract


  • Preheat oven to 350°F and grease a cupcake/muffin pan or line it with baking cups.
  • In a small bowl, stir together semolina flour, saffron, baking soda, baking powder, and pinch of salt. Set aside.
  • In food processor, grind almonds until sand-like consistency with finer and coarser bits.
  • Add butter and mix until creamy and well incorporated with the ground almonds. If necessary, take pauses to scrape off the butter from the sides of the food processor and into the mixture, with the help of a silicone spatula.
  • In a small saucepan, heat milk with sumo orange zest and juice over medium-low heat, occasionally stirring. (Do not let it boil.) Once it's warm, turn back on the food processor and slowly add the milk mixture.
  • Add eggs, 1 by at a time, until blended. Add sour cream progressively too. Then, gradually add flour mixture until the dough is homogenous.
  • Pour dough in baking pan/baking cups and bake until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a cupcake comes out clean (25-30 minutes).
  • In the meantime, prepare frosting by mixing all the ingredients together. Once the cupcakes are baked and have cooled down, you can start decorating!
  • Enjoy ;-)


While I used a food processor for all the steps due to convenience, you can also mix the ingredients by hand or with a regular mixer, but you'll have to get ground almonds rather than whole ones.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!