Wednesday, January 28, 2009

I Love This Rocking Out Asparagus.

You're awesome, myzoetrope.
I found this browsing Etsy during lunch.
It speaks to me.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Banana Cupcakes with Caramel Filling and Bourbon Buttercream Frosting WHAT

It was like magic.
I didn't even know what was going to happen.

I've never made cupcakes from scratch before, so I wasn't sure how things were going to turn out.

A comment on these cupcakes from a taste tester: "Damn!"

That's what I was aiming for, and I didn't even know it.

The magic recipe for Jan's Banana Cupcakes with Caramel Filling and Bourbon Buttercream Frosting (Drunk Monkeys, perhaps?):

I used this recipe for the banana cupcakes. Magnificent and easy, thank you a million cupcakes, I came out with 24 mini cupcakes and 11 regular size.

Then I made the buttercream like this:

1 1/2 sticks of unsalted butter
2 cups of powdered sugar
4 tsp bourbon
2 tsp vanilla (the good stuff)
2 tbsp milk
pinch of salt

I creamed the room temperature butter, added the powdered sugar (I started with 1 1/2 cups but had to add more later). I added the liquids and beat the heck out of it. I put some bourbon in my tea and continued on my adventure with a spring in my step.

Once my cupcakes were cooled off on the rack, I had the wild and crazy idea to use some of the some kind of brand of caramel ice cream topping I have in the fridge for making coffee drinks to fill the cupcakes. Because go big or don't go at all, right? P.S. The store bought caramel sauce is the only component of these bad boys that is fat free WORD.

The caramel is in a squeeze bottle, which I believe made my life (or just filling these cupcakes with caramel) easier.

I cut little cones out of the tops of the minis with a paring knife, leveled off the cut-out piece to just a lid, filled the cakes up most of the way with the caramel sauce, and popped the lid back on. Easy!

Then I tried it with the bigger guys - still easy!

I loaded the buttercream up into a ziplock, cut a hole in the corner and went to town. The icing didn't turn out pretty on every cake - I definitely need to figure out a better consistency for my own liking, but I couldn't find a recipe for bourbon frosting that didn't have cream cheese or wasn't a glaze. I did not want or have cream cheese. I did not want a glaze. Necessity being the mother of invention, I just spread those mothers out when they didn't pipe right. Excellent!

Here is photographic evidence that all of this happened:

That's what I'm talking about.

Janice with cupcake
both of us full of bourbon
happy together

Cupcake haiku YES!


I've got supplies!

I went to Williams Sonoma on Saturday and used the gift certificate my company's attorney gave us for Christmas. I got a mini muffin tin and some vanilla bean paste and some fancy honey.


I got flour and butter and confectioner's sugar and chocolate chips!

I'm pretty excited about making a few different kinds of cupcakes. I'm a long time cupcake eater, first time cupcake maker. Well, first time from scratch. I make lots of cupcakes from mixes, and they're alright, but I know that I'm missing something not making the cake and frosting myself.

I also really like to make tiny sculptures and I could totally make tiny cupcake sculptures with fondant. How cool would that be? Totally.

I have some funky old bananas lying around the kitchen, being good for nothing but throwing into the woods, that might find their way into a batch of cupcakes with some bourbon frosting once I find a bourbon frosting recipe that doesn't have cream cheese in it and/or isn't a glaze. You try it. It's hard.

It's good to have a hobby, and with my hobby of late being bead embroidery my eyes are starting to cross and I'm poked all full of tiny holes from the sewing needle. So I'm going to have two hobbies: Cupcakes and Bead Embroidery. I capitalized those words because they are Important.

Onward and upward!