Sunday, March 30, 2008

Chocolate Love.

Cheers to my first try at chocolate transfers!!  After a slight panic over some minor smudging and cracking, all in all, I am fairly proud.  

For the cupcake, I adapted flavors of an Almond Joy candy.  I was looking for something to contribute to my pair of chocolate and coconut cream.  Thanks to my creative mother, a hint of marzipan sounded like a perfect component to complete her idea of an Almond Joy cupcake. 

I filled and frosted basic chocolate butter cupcakes with delicious coconut cream cheese icing.  For the hint of almond, I rolled and cut out disks of marzipan and capped the cakes under the icing.  My experimental, heart-shaped decorations accessorized their tops.  

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Pug Pup Round-Up

A couple of Sundays ago, my brother and I hosted a pug meet-up for Dizzee and her friends.  Of course we needed snacks!  I turned my ripe bananas into delicious banana cupcakes with velvety vanilla bean cream cheese frosting.  I made the daffodils out of royal icing.  We also made treats for the pups too!

Banana Cake:
5 ripe bananas
1 cup butter
2 1/2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
3 1/4 cup flour
2 teaspoons baking soda

In a standing mixer, combine softened butter and sugar until smooth.  And eggs, one at a time.  Beat in sour cream and vanilla, making sure to scrape the sides of your mixing bowl in between.  Add sifted flour and baking soda.  Scrape sides.  Fold in mashed ripened bananas until incorporated.

Bake at 350 degrees F.  20-25 minutes for cupcakes. 

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Key Lime Sublime.

After a successful attempt at mini Key Lime Mousse Pies, I needed another project to incorporate my left-over lime curd.  Solution?  Key Lime Cupcakes!!  The combination of the tang of the lime and simple vanilla cake and buttercream was absolutely delicious and light.  

I topped half the cuppies with shredded coconut.  I adore the look, but personally can't stand the texture =) 

For the non-coconut lovers, like myself, I topped the fluffy vanilla buttercream with a simple fondant flower.

Filling the cupcakes:
To fill the cupcakes, I cut a cone of cake out of the top of each cupcake.  I filled each cup with approximately 1 1/2 teaspoons of Key lime curd before replacing their caps and icing with vanilla buttercream.

Easter Cuppies

It seems as though I am constantly looking for new excuses to bake these days.  What better reason to whip up a couple batches of cupcakes than the celebration of Easter?  I took the opportunity to test out some spring flavors on my friends and family.  Success!  Nothing says Easter like coconut cream, apricot 'n honey, strawberry, and a bit of sugar.  I hope my taste-testers had as much fun munching as I did decorating =) The hand-made flowers were crafted out of fondant and royal icing.

vanilla cake with apricot filling and honey buttercream

vanilla cake with strawberry filling and strawberry buttercream

vanilla cake with coconut cream cheese frosting and toasted coconut flakes

Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting:
8 oz. softened cream cheese
1 lb. softened butter
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/2 tablespoon coconut extract
1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
3- 4 cups confectioners sugar, mix until creamy.