Post #21: Strawberry Cheesecake Cupcakes

I wanted to make something sweet, but was having a hard time choosing between this recipe, and a recipe for a raspberry chiffon pie - both look summery, sweet, and yummy, and I had everything I needed for both of them!  (Usually that's how I decide...but I even had the Sure-Jell on hand, go figure!).  Essentially, I chose to make these cupcakes because I love - LOVE - buttercream and cream cheese frostings, and this one is BOTH!  Fat booty, here I come!  I'll just make the pie for a family gathering in the future... ;)

Strawberry Cheesecake Cupcakes
Recipe from: Joylicious

(Prep time: 45 minutes; Total cooking time: 2 hours)
makes approx. 20 cupcakes
    1 package graham cracker crumbs
    1 1/2 sticks of butter (12 Tbs), room temperature
    1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
    1 tsp baking powder
    1/2 tsp salt
    12 Tbs unsalted butter, room temperature
    1 cup + 2 Tbs sugar
    1 tsp vanilla extract
    1/2 cup sour cream or plain yogurt4 large egg whites
    2 cups fresh strawberries, hulled & coarsely chopped
Preheat oven to 350 F and line 16-18 muffin tins with cupcake liners. Mix one box of graham cracker crumbs with butter using a food processor. The mixture should hold together when pressed with fingers, add more butter if needed. Sprinkle about 1 tablespoon of the crushed graham cracker into the bottom of each prepared muffin tin. Press down using fingers and bake for 3-5 minutes or until slightly browned. Remove immediately from oven and set aside to cool.
In a medium bowl beat the egg whites until stiff, glossy peaks appear, about 3-4 minutes, be careful not to overbeat. Set aside.
In a small bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder & salt. In a large bowl, cream together butter & sugar until light & fluffy and then add the vanilla & beat on a low-speed. Then add half the flour mixture until incorporated then mix in the sour cream or yogurt. Add remaining flour & mix until just blended.
Gently fold 1/3 of the egg into the batter until combined, do not over mix the egg whites or the cake will fall flat. Add remaining egg and fold in the chopped strawberries. Fill each muffin tin about 3/4 of the way and bake for about 20 minutes depending on your oven. You can test the doneness by sticking a toothpick through the center, if it comes out clean it is ready to take out!
Ingredients for Cream Cheese Frosting:
2 packets of cream cheese (16 oz)
2 sticks of unsalted butter (16 Tb)
3 3/4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1 tsp vanilla extract
In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla together until smooth. Add the sugar slowly in small batches, beating on low speed until incorporated. Once all sugar has been added, increase the speed to high and mix until light and fluffy. Refrigerate for 1 hour. When ready to serve, spread icing on cupcakes or use a pastry bag with a star tip. Garnish with freshly cut strawberries and graham cracker crumbs and refrigerate until ready to serve.