I’ve never been a fan of icing, especially buttercream. This one, however, is great on top of white cupcakes, and with the addition of actual vanilla bean, it's hard to beat. It tints up great for cupcakes if you don’t mind the little black specks. If you’d prefer not to have the black specks, omit the vanilla bean and use more vanilla extract. Pair with Vanilla cupcakes.
1 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar (icing, powdered)
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 vanilla bean, scraped and 2 tsp of vanilla extract.
1 tbsp heavy cream
In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter until creamy. Add the icing sugar ½ cup at a time, continuing to beat until it comes together. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the vanilla. Continue to beat on medium, slowly adding the cream, then beat on medium low until creamy, about 5 minutes.
Makes enough to ice 12 cupcakes
Adapted from Martha Stewart