Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line 12 cupcake cups with paper liners. In a bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder.
In a mixing bowl, thoroughly cream together the sugar and 1/2 cup of margarine until very well blended. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until thoroughly combined, and stir in the vanilla and almond extracts. Gradually beat in the flour mixture, alternating with the milk, in several additions. Spoon the batter into the prepared cupcake cups, filling them about 2/3 full.
Bake the cupcakes in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes.
To make caramel, Place the brown sugar, 1/2 cup margarine, corn syrup, and vanilla into a large saucepan over medium heat, and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer until thickened, 3 to 4 minutes; remove from heat and allow to cool to warm (not hot) temperature. Add the cream, a little at a time, until the caramel has the consistency of honey. Mix in the pinch of salt, and allow to cool to room temperature.
Beat the salted butter with confectioners’ sugar in a bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until the mixture is fluffy; slowly add and beat in the caramel, a tablespoon at a time, beating until the frosting is smooth.
Butter can be substituted for margarine, of course, but that’s just what I used. The milk could be any type; I used whole milk.
If desired, save back a tablespoon or so of the caramel from the frosting, for a drizzle over the top of the cupcakes.
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