mini chocolate chips, chopped nuts (pistachios), and/or maraschino cherries
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line muffin pans with 24 paper liners.
Mix together flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon in medium mixing bowl until well combined.
Beat together butter and granulated sugar in large mixing bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time. Then beat in fresh orange zest and 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract until well combined.
Alternate adding the dry ingredients and milk into the butter and sugar mixture, beating after each addition until just combined.
Spoon cake batter into prepared muffin pans. Bake at 375 degrees F for about 15 to 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted into middle comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool completely.
For frosting, beat together ricotta and mascarpone in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until well combined. Beat in powdered sugar, vanilla, orange juice, cinnamon, and salt until well combined.
Frost cupcakes as desired and top with additional mini chocolate chips, chopped nuts (pistachios), and/or maraschino cherries. Store cupcakes in refrigerator until ready to serve.
SNAPPY TIPS: You can omit the orange zest and juice if you don't like citrus. Be sure the cupcakes are completely cool before frosting.SNAPPY SUBSTITUTIONS: Instead of vanilla extract you could use almond extract or Fiori di Sicilia.RICOTTA/MASCARPONE: For BEST results please use full-fat cheeses AND drain your ricotta overnight. See how to strain ricotta cheese for diretions if needed. It's not always necessary to drain it, but since there are many types and brands of ricotta, I strongly recommend draining it to be on the safe side so you don't have a runny frosting. If you can find it in your area, you can also try ricotta impastata (pastry ricotta).
Keywords: from scratch cake, homemade cannoli cream frosting