21 March 2008

The Spring Break baking binge continues...

Sadly, my Spring Break is over and I'm back at OWU. And while that means no more baking for a while [or so I feared...], that doesn't mean I don't have anything to post. I did quite a bit of baking while I was at home last week - 3 batches of cupcakes and 2 batches of frosting, to be exact. Do I have a problem? Maybe. I don't think so, but others might. Baking actually serves as my personal therapy. The experience is calming for me and serves as an escape from everything else. The cupcakes I'm writing about tonight were especially therapeutic, considering they followed a horrible experience involving my keys being locked in my car...at a gas station. Okay, it wasn't that horrible, but I was shaken up. I was in a less-than-favorable location, my dad had to leave work to help me out, and I was convinced every guy at the gas station was going to attack me. So, obviously, some serious pastry therapy was necessary.

My second batch of cupcakes in as many days was a bunch of lovely Coconut Cupcakes, again from 52 Cupcakes. I had originally planned to make a cream cheese frosting to go with the cupcakes, but I had so much leftover chocolate buttercream that it see
med silly not to use that. I went a little light on the frosting this time around because I feared the chocolate would overwhelm the possibly subtle coconut flavor. I ended up with a great balance between the two, but I probably could have done with even less frosting - a little goes a long way with this stuff. The cupcakes were awesome - a light and fluffy cake and the coconut added an interesting and contrasting texture, as well as some additional sweetness. I slightly altered the recipe and substituted cake flour for half of the all-purpose flour and I also used only vanilla extract, rather than using vanilla and almond extracts. I definitely plan on making these cupcakes again and I am thinking about trying a pineapple cream cheese frosting for that batch...We'll see what happens!

11 March 2008

More vanilla cupcakes!

I know, I know...It's been quite a while since I last posted. No, I haven't forgotten about this blog. I just haven't been sure what else to do with it aside from posting cupcakes and other baking escapades. More than once I considered posting reviews of different food items - Diet Cherry Chocolate Dr. Pepper [never again will I touch a bottle of that drink], Chocolate Skittles [not as bad as I had anticipated, but definitely not tasty], and Wild Cherry M&Ms [okay...not too bad, but nothing great] - but I was afraid it would either be yawn-worthy or, well, silly. But now that I'm on Spring Break I can get back to the cupcakes!

I made plans prior to break to try a new cupcake recipe - Peaches and Cream cupcakes - but after much thought and deliberation [probably far too much of both], the vanilla cupcakes I made for my birthday were the obvious choice. Don't worry, I won't be posting the exact same cupcakes as the previous post. I opted to go with a chocolate buttercream frosting, rather than the vanilla buttercream. Oh my gosh. I could eat the entire batch of frosting with a giant spoon. Screw the cupcakes, give me the frosting! Sure, I'd be suffering later for my gluttony but I'd completely fail to consider that consequence. Mmm...

What was I talking about? Oh yeah, cupcakes. I stuck with "Billy's Vanilla Cupcakes" and paired them with the simple chocolate buttercream, creating a heavenly result. The frosting is light & fluffy, and the semi-sweet chocolate cuts the sometimes overwhelming sweetness of the powdered sugar. The cupcakes were light & soft & airy & every other adjective that could be used to describe fabulous cupcakes. The family is absolutely in love with this batch, especially the frosting. I caught my dad sticking his finger in the leftover frosting more than once and he ended up with some on his nose after diving into a cupcake earlier this evening.