Category Archives: cupcake

Apple Crisp Cupcakes

So, you know how some people are like, “Oh, hey, I meant to call you but I’ve been busy…”? Well, I am probably one of the only people you’ll ever meet in your life who IS genuinely busy. And uh, yeah, I meant to call you, he he.

But seriously, I just started school full time, I work part time, and I have one toddler and two teenagers who I have to drive here, there, and everywhere, otherwise I’m made to feel like an a-hole. This is the reason I all but stopped my side baking business with an exception now and again- like today.

It’s Superbowl Sunday! I have to work and I’m bringing in these delicious apple crisp cupcakes. The recipe is pretty basic- take the vanilla cupcake recipe from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World and cross it with the Apple Crisp Cupcake from Julie Hasson’s 125 Best Cupcake Recipes. Totally vegan and totally delicious! Simply add 1 cup of peeled, chopped apple to the batter of the vegan vanilla cupcake. Then make this streusel…

Streusel:

3/4 cup brown sugar

3 Tbsp Earth Balance

1 tsp cinnamon

pinch salt

Mix together until you have coarse, wet crumbs. Fill your lined muffin cups half way with the batter. Place a dollop of the streusel mixture in the center then fill to the top with more batter. Bake at 350 for about 26 minutes, possibly more, if your oven sucks. Let cool completely. Yes, they will be very sticky and gooey but seriously, if anyone actually complains about this, remove the cupcake from their hand, toss it in the trash and say “There. Not so sticky now, is it!?”

Apple Crisp Cupcakes

Oh and I tried to download the cupcake toppers my friend Natalie posted in her blog but I have this new-ish printer that apparently doesn’t have magenta ink, thus being the reason why it was given to me, i guess. Alas, no toppers.

Enjoy these!!

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Another Bridal Shower

Can you believe it? someone actually found my website and called to order! I was shocked, too, honestly. I put up that website so my friends and family members could all get a good laugh out of my rudeness. I had no idea someone would actually take any of it serious.

Alas, along came Jan, searching the web for treats for her daughters bridal shower. She remembered having my goodies at a friends son’s christening in which the cupcakes were in the shape of a cross-I kid you not. Not individual cross-shaped cupcakes, nooooooo. She wanted them on a very large platter placed neatly to resemble her saviour’s crucifix. Hey, man, if you’re paying me, I’ll put them in the shape of an inverted pentagram. Whatever.

So Jan read my website thoroughly and called to discuss numbers and flavors. She says, “I read where you put that you only do full dozens and I want you to know, that’s okay. I understand.” It was nice to hear someone agree in the face of the naysayers telling me I should kiss as much ass as possible and just give people what they want. Nah, says I. Not gonna happen.

She ordered strawberry with strawberry cream cheese icing, white chocolate macadamia with orange cream cheese icing, chocolate with chocolate icing, cappuccino chip with coffee buttercream, lemon scented angel food cakes with lemon cream cheese icing, red velvet with plain cream cheese icing, and strawberry margarita. there was something for everyone, including the already-drunk-when-she-walked-in mother of the groom.

I was trying a new cappuccino chip recipe and there weren’t enough to taste so I hope they were good. I always encourage honest feedback from my customers, I hope they don’t just blow smoke up my ass. This recipe called for finely ground coffee in the actual batter which sounded a bit weird and possibly gritty to me, so who knows. She told me everything was fabulous and I really hope that it was. It sure looked good!!

So even though this is a mostly vegan food blog, not one of these recipes is vegan. This blog started out as me complaining about my kids, then went into my small-time baking projects, and THEN went vegan so I feel I must stay true somewhat to my roots and post pics of the stuff I do for others special events.

Oh, and if anyone has any advice on how to make strawberry cream cheese icing pipeable, hit me up. I’m dying over here. All I can ever manage is to put a blob on each cuppie and hope that it doesn’t drip too much. I had so much frosting go to waste because I didn’t know what else to do with the leftover. The very first time I made it, it was phenominal and I don’t know what I did that was different. Oh well!

Here’s the recipe for the angel food cupcakes. I get a lot of peeps asking about this one.

Angel Food cupcakes

½ cup cake flour

¼ cup confectioners’ sugar

5 large egg whites, at room temperature

¼ teaspoon salt

½ tsp vanilla

½ teaspoon cream of tartar

¼ cup plus 2 Tbsp granulated sugar

1-2 tsp grated lemon zest (optional, for lemony angels)

Oven at 325.

Line muffin pan with foil liners. In a small bowl, combine the cake flour with the confectioners’ sugar. In a large bowl, combine the egg whites with the salt, vanilla and cream of tartar and beat until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in the granulated sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the whites are firm and glossy. Sift the flour mixture over the egg whites in 2 additions, folding gently until incorporated.

Spoon the batter into the muffin cups. Bake for 13 to 15 minutes, shifting the pan from front to back, until the cupcakes are springy and golden. Transfer the cupcakes to a rack to cool.

To make them just lightly lemon scented, add 1-2 teaspoons of grated lemon zest to the batter.

To make them a lot more lemony, add ¼ cup thawed frozen lemonade.

I like to be decadent since the cake itself has pretty much no fat. I make my favorite cream cheese icing and when you would normally put in a tablespoon or two of milk to soak up the dryness of the powdered sugar, I put in a tablespoon or two fresh squeezed lemon juice. It’s so tangy you think your lips are going to stay in that puckered butthole position for awhile, but they won’t, don’t worry.

Oh, and If you aren’t feeling decadent at all, just slice strawberries and put those on top, lame-o.

Enjoy!

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Just Desserts going vegan?

Nah…but I am going to dabble. Okay, here’s the deal.

Over a year ago my daughter decided she was done eating things that were once alive. She was surfing the web one day and came across the infamous PETA video of minks being skinned alive so that J-Lo may wear their precious fur. She was inconsolable. She said it made her feel guilty, and honestly, like she wanted to throw up all the meat she ever ate in her life. I supported her and tried to make things that i could easily set aside a portion of before i threw the meat into. You know, spaghetti, stir fry, that type of thing. I ended up buying her pre-made vegetarian stuff that while tasty, was not nearly as healthy as it should have been. She informed me that she wanted to do it the healthy way so i told her to go look at my cookbooks, since i have an arsenal of vegetarian and vegan cookbooks from my days as a person who once gave a crap about the environment.

That was so long ago, almost 8 years since i gave it up. Like all new vegetarians, i armed myself with the PETA starter kit-complete with stickers and a list of things that would be different if people would stop eating meat- and a brand new attitude about the sanctity of life. I was ready to be a good vegetarian, to have a plant-based, peace loving life.

I was shot down by about every single stinking person i came into contact with. I got laughed at, called names, had burger patties thrown at me. Yes, these were actual adults stooping to this level of childishness. I worked in a restaurant and no one there had any patience for a person like me. I was basically against everything they stood for, i suppose. I started to question the aforementioned sanctity of life thinking, “if i shanked one of these jagoffs, would anyone notice? Really?”

Anyhow, I was a vegetarian for quite a few years. I went vegan for about 8 months but I became skeletal because of my work schedule as well as my finances. I was too busy to make things and too broke to buy things pre-made. There was just nothing i could eat so i started eating cheese again and after about a month’s worth of shakes from Steak and Shake, i gained all my lovely weight back. Hooray!

I then met my now husband. He thought it was ‘cute’ that i didn’t eat meat so he tried to have meatless frozen dinners for when i would come to visit. Mmmm. Yummy. Not! When we moved in together, we settled into those sickeningly domestic roles of “I’ll cook and clean, you mow and take out the garbage.” It got too difficult to make two separate meals so i gave in and started eating flesh again. Fast forward almost 8 years and I’m ready to make my move against meat.

As you may have read in an earlier post, my hubby and i started the Nutri-system diet and i have chosen the vegetarian option as a precursor. I have many reasons for doing this. One of them is that my toddler won’t touch meat no matter how i cook it. She chews it, then spits it out. Another reason is my middle child pretty much goes with the flow and as long as there’s food, she’ll eat it. Myself, well, I’ve always been lactose intolerant so cheese hurts, as does a milkshake. I’m wheat intolerant, too, but that one i’ll deal with accordingly. I think the main reason is that whole environmental thing. Going green. You can’t avoid it anymore. Even celebrities are like “i like meat and all, but if it helps get Obama elected, I’ll stop” or whatever lame reasoning those creeps have. I don’t even care anymore, as long as people start doing something. Anything, really. I even called my garbage company and asked for two more recycle bins because i know i can throw more stuff in there and NOT in the local landfill.

I’m listening to my beautiful, wonderful Edward Norton narrate and host a program on channel eleven that i am DVRing to watch later. He’s talking about our country going to shit. Depressing. He said “it’s not enough to do just one thing anymore, we have to do more, but if only one thing is what you’re willing to do, then stop with those little plastic grocery bags. Many countries have banned them already. Why not us, also?” I love him.

Vegan is definitely the ultimate goal, or at least mostly vegan so i bought an arsenal of books online tonight, all of which i have posted in my blog for you to look at and then go purchase for yourselves.

Here’s a link to cupcakes made by my friend Natalie. They are vegan cookies and creme and i think she did a nice looking job, don’t you? you should tell her so. Chicks love compliments. And presents.

Vegan Cookies & Cream Cupcakes

So this will conclude my post on hopefully going vegan. My only issue will be dealing with all the extra gas from all those delicious veggies. I’m gonna have to buy up some stock in beano. Ahem.



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Update coming soon…

Thanks for being so patient with me, i know i haven’t written in a while. My ultimate goal is to post twice a week, include lots of pictures and complain diligently about how terrible i am at my chosen path in life- food preparation for others. I have a few personal issues to work out but once those are done, I’m all yours!

Coming up- My daring bakers challenge. I know we aren’t allowed to post any details about it until the end of the month, so that stinks, but fear not! It will be sooooooooooo worth it.

I have a tasting Friday. For a young lady’s bridal shower coming up in August, she would like to try my edible white chocolate cups with chocolate mousse and fresh berries on top. I’m going to present it on my stackable cake plates of course, with whatever flowers she likes (in her wedding colors, also) placed appropriately in between all to resemble a beautiful shower cake. It will be awesome.

In a few weeks, i have a bridal shower with an English tea party theme, also with an advice theme. She’s asked me to make flags for some of the cuppies that say things like “don’t go to bed angry” and blah blah blah. I actually picked out a few more risque ones, but I’m not going to tell her. She’ll get a kick out of them. I’m also going to make lemon angel food cupcakes, as well as banana walnut, cappuccino chip, and carrot all in mini cupcake form. did i mention i will also be doing her scones, devonshire cream, and cucumber finger sammies? she’s a good friend, so i figured why not. If you wanna pay me to make gnome food, cool. I’m down with that.

I also have a few orders for mother’s day. I hope i get to see my own mommy, as i will be working that day, bringing food to other people’s mothers at one of my other jobs. ( i currently hold three part time jobs)

Here’s what I’m working on for tomorrow…

raspberry cupcakesMy best friend is going to bring two half dozens of my favorite flavors to the doctors office where he and i both know people but I’m too shy to do my own dirty work. i guess in this area of my life, i have a tiny self-esteem issue when there was not one before. I’ll get over it but until then, he can be a trooper and help me out.

The first one is a chocolate cupcake filled with raspberry ganache and topped with chocolate raspberry buttercream. The recipe is as follows but to be honest, you can use which ever your favorite is because the real star of this show is the ganache you plop inside right before baking, and of course the frosting. Mmmm….i can almost taste them now…

Chocolate Cupcakes

1 & 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

3/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1 cup granulated sugar

1/3 cup vegetable oil

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla

3/4 cup buttermilk

Oven at 350. Line pan with paper liners. Mix dry stuff in one bowl, mix wet stuff in bowl, minus the buttermilk. Alternately whisk in flour mixture and buttermilk into butter mixture until smooth. Scoop batter into pan.

I would highly recommend having the ganache made and hardened already before you get started on the cupcakes, but hey, if you like wasting your oven’s precious time, knock yourself out.

Easiest ganache ever

3/4 heavy whipping cream

8 oz semi sweet choc chips

1 tsp vanilla

2 tsp raspberry liqueur (don’t worry, the cheap stuff is fine here, don’t run out and buy a $40 bottle of chambord for this. I bought a $7.99 bottle of creme diCassis and it was fabulous. razzmatazz works fine here also.)

Basically, heat the cream over low to medium heat until it is nice and warm. Take it off the heat and stir in those chips. Keep stirring! What are you stopping for!? They need to get smooth and shiny and then you can add your vanilla and liqueur. Now, you get to wait. resist the urge to eat half the bowl like i did the first time i made this. Since you will be filling cupcakes with it, you need to put it in the fridge for an hour. Let it get nice and stiff. Oh, yeah. If you don’t, then when you go to glob it into your cupcake batter, it will fall to the bottom and instead of cuppies filled with ganache, you have some sort of black-bottomed nonsense that i don’t particularly approve of. If you want my recipe for black-bottomed cupcakes, let me know. These aren’t them, so don’t screw this up.

Once it’s hard, grab your one ounce ice cream scooper and get scoopin’. Don’t drop the stuff, place it nicely on top of the batter, otherwise it will fall and blah blah blah read previous paragraph. Oh, and you won’t need the entire scoop filled with the ganache. You can i guess, that would make these super chocolatey though and while i have no problem with that, well, you’re also going to be frosting these, so ease up, all right?

Bake in the oven for about 20-25 minutes. My oven defies the laws of physics and things seem to cook stupid fast so pay attention to your stove. you’ll see the ganache sink and a few minutes later, they’ll be done. About 20-25, like i said. Let them cool for 5 in the pan, then cool completely before frosting.

The frosting is basic chocolate buttercream mixed with a tbsp of seedless raspberry jam and garnished with a frozen, thawed raspberry. The raspberry tends to release a bit of liquid that drips down over the frosting and looks absolutely amazing. I mean you see it and you just have to have it, like when i see a new MAC lipglass in some ugly color of purple.

So here they are. I can’t imagine a bunch of overweight office types NOT liking these, but one of these days, i may actually be surprised by human behaviour. I doubt it though.

I had every intention of publishing the other flavor of cupcake i did tonight that my friend will be bringing to the dentist office but i’m stinking tired. You understand, right? When i get up in the am, this will be the first thing on my to-do list, i promise! Cappuccino chip cupcakes…mmm…

Dream about them until then!

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Strawberry cupcakes, why do i bother?

So Mia’s birthday was last week, but they aren’t having her party until next week because of the crummy not-spring like weather we are currently having. However, yesterday was not too bad, and today will be even better, i hear. Mia is the daughter of one of my best friends in the whole wide world, Britt. Britt and i moved to Las Vegas together. Let’s just say we’ve been through a lot as friends and there’s one thing in particular that she did for me that only a true friend would do, so i will always keep her in my life. Please don’t ask what it was, suffice it to say that it was the equivalent of holding someone’s hair back when they’re puking.

I decided that since Britt was the one who got me the happy cupcake feet for my birthday, i would test them out on her daughter. I was going to make delicious strawberry cupcakes with strawberry cream cheese frosting. Yum! What kid wouldn’t like those? And even better, i was going to shape out to look like a caterpillar, and put candy on them. Mia’s dentist, beware!

So if you have read any of my other posts, you know that i have tried out about 6 different strawberry cupcake recipes in search of one that blows me away. Honestly, they’ve all been pretty lame. This one is my seventh attempt. I used the vanilla cupcake recipe from this book but halved it because i only wanted twelve. The recipe is as follows, with my notes and comments, of course.

1 stick butter, soft

1/2 cup sugar

1 cup self-rising flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

2 eggs

1/2 tsp vanilla

*1 tsp strawberry extract

*1/2 package strawberry gelatin

*1/2 cup frozen, thawed, chopped strawberries

*this means it wasn’t in the original recipe, i threw it in there

I put the oven at 350, mixed wet, then dry, then mixed it all together, then baked them for 19 minutes. They came out nice and pink and smelled wonderful but there was not even one extra so i couldn’t taste them. I used this very basic recipe for strawberry cream cheese frosting to put on top.

1 pack 8 oz cream cheese, soft and mushy

1/2 stick butter, soft and mushy

2-3 cups powdered sugar

1 tsp strawberry extract

1/2 cup frozen, thawed, chopped strawberries

1 drop red food color, for that extra push over the cliff

You mix the butter and cream cheese together until smooth and somewhat fluffy then start adding in the powdered sugar. Wait until the end to fold in the berries. Try not to get any of the juice in there or you’re going to have to add more powdered sugar and it may get grainy on you. Or stiff. Some people like things that are stiff so if that’s okay with you, enjoy. When i was done frosting them, i rolled them around a plate of tiny round decorative candies just so it was on the edges.

Then i pushed two strawberry creme savers in the top of each one to look like the “spine” of a dragon, or dinosaur, or something else cool a seven year old would like. At this point i couldn’t decide between dragon without wings, or caterpillar with a tail. Whichever, i guess. I also made fondant tail which i rolled around in red food paste until it was a very sickly color of redpink. Shudder.

I then realized that i couldn’t bring them to her until the next day so i stuck them in my wilton cupcake carrier and popped them in the fridge. Guess what happened? I guess any moron with two brain cells to rub together could have seen it coming but alas, i have only one brain cell. Too much pot in high school.

The damn creme savers melted and got all over the tops of the cupcakes! Oh well, i guess that just makes them more strawberry tasting, right?

Here is what they look like after i got to her house and assembled them on her counter. Warning! These are not my prettiest work! I am saved by the fact that she is a kid and anything with sugar is good until you reach a certain height. Lucky! Also saved by the fact that I got her one of those butterfly garden things and some sidewalk chalk. Who wouldn’t want worms on their birthday? I know i would!!

So, happy birthday sweet girl. I hope all your wishes come true. I love you!

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Things I love, part deux

I just found a bunch of cute cupcake related items so i thought i would post them here with, as always, my comments. This is the book i use mostly for recipes. So far, the only one that blows me away is the vanilla. Very basic, but excellent every time i use it. Otherwise, i think her devil’s food recipe came out dry, and i hate using self-rising flour. I like to put all the ingredients in myself, so i know what the hell i’m doing wrong. These plates are super cool. they are ceramic, shaped like cupcakes, and painted all cute and stuff. If i wanted to be completely queer and make my kitchen cupcake themed, instead of it’s current theme, coffee, i would buy these and hang them on the walls. More plates. Also very cute, but i can see these breaking and then me getting angry and yelling “who broke my cupcake plate?” and my housemates thinking I’ve lost it. This is Wilton’s new giant cupcake cake pan. To be honest, i have no interest in this. I don’t do cakes. Not even ones that are shaped like cupcakes. the whole point for me is to not only get out of doing the dishes(have i mentioned i am supremely lazy?), but make something that will fit into the palm of your hand, and that you don’t have slice and portion out. When i try to cut cakes, they end up all lopsided and one person will have a nice little sliver while another will have a giant wedge. Plus, look at the obvious difference from one side of the pan to the other. How’s that work? thanks Wilton, but for almost $30, you can keep it.

these just look adorable. Right? My friend over at Bake and Destroy! said she bought them for her niece and they’re super cute. It’s a little shape sorter where you have to match up the cuppie with the frosting. Adorable. what will they think of next? Is there no end to the alarmingly trendy cupcake craze?

My next pick for super cute is this awesome little rain boot. I have no use for rain boots. Not that it doesn’t rain, but I’m actually okay with my shoes getting a little wet. Also, if it’s raining, i tend to stay indoors like most people.

I found all of these things on http://www.target.com. I don’t get out that much so i do a lot of online shopping and I don’t think people realize how much more stuff Target has available as opposed to what’s in their stores. check it out! Oh, and I know I’m supposed to be in support of the little guy and all that jazz, but Target does indeed give back to each community and I’m okay with that.

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stackable-cake-plates.jpg I bought one of these today and I am very proud of myself. I have two occasions coming up where I’ll need a stackable cake plate and for about $36 plus shipping to my house, i don’t even have to think about it anymore.  I already have four of these cupcake-tree.jpg but i wanted something different, something a little nicer for the occasional anniversary party or wedding shower, or gasp, wedding. Now all i have to do is pick up some fake orchids from Micheal’s, cut them to fit and viola! Cupcake wedding cake. Incidentally, Target.com had a very cute as hell cake plate that was all painted in gay little pastels and it had a cupcake and piece of pie painted onto it, but for 40 bucks? It wasn’t that cute.

So i do have a couple of jobs coming up and i am very excited for them. It got me thinking though, why don’t i have more jobs coming up? Here’s why- I live in the armpit of Illinois and my services don’t come cheap.  I’m not the most expensive hussy out there by a long shot but when these big fat trashballs know they can go wal-mart and pick up a box of mix and a can (gross!!) of frosting for less than$4, why would they pay $2 per cake from me? This is what i struggle with daily and sometimes i get down about it, but i still love doing it, so screw cheap jerks. My cupcakes are yummie. Like, really yummie.

I have a friend who does the same general baking business out of her home but she gets to sell to local cafes. So jealous! We have nothing like that around here. Any type of little coffee shop already has a donut den located inside. I guess i will just have to persevere and keep looking.

Next on my list- a logo! And then maybe cutie pie shirts! And then who knows!

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