For Valentine’s Day my design program held a cookie baking contest. Since I’m not a cookie baker, I made cupcakes. I used the chocolate cupcake recipe with twice the optional coffee added and the buttercream frosting recipe with about a quarter teaspoon raspberry extract. I topped them with fresh raspberries and drizzled them with dark chocolate (1/2 cup dark chocolate chips + 1/8 cup heavy cream melted in the microwave and stirred until smooth). They were super rich, but really great. Bryan Anton said they were the best cupcakes he ever ate. I didn’t place in the contest, possibly because it was a cookie baking contest, but I still think I came out on top.
Today is Cory’s birthday, so I made a cupcake flavor especially for him. They were pineapple cake with pineapple cream cheese fosting, topped with a maraschino cherry. I used the golden vanilla cupcake recipe and added a 20oz can of crushed pineapple after mixing the batter. I drained the fruit from the juice and added about half the juice to the cream cheese frosting. The cupcakes were super moist, but didn’t rise much, so if you make these, be sure to fill the cupcake liners a little fuller than usual to ensure you get a good sized cupcake. Cory said they were the best cupcakes he had ever had, so success!
For New Year’s at my in-law’s house, I made cinnamon dolce latte cupcakes from a recipe I found on Pinterest. Bad plan. They look great, but might be the worst cupcakes I have ever made. They were super dry and dense. Perhaps I over-browned the butter. Maybe I should just trust cupcake recipes I have tested when cooking for large groups of friends and family. The frosting was really good though: my basic buttercream with about a quarter teaspoon of cinnamon added. I think I added a bit of ginger as well.
Halloween is my husband’s birthday, and my favorite holiday. This year I made two kinds of cupcakes: chocolate cupcakes with chili chocolate frosting and chocolate cupcakes with raspberry buttercream. The chili chocolate cupcakes were decorated with Twizzlers cut into devil horns. The raspberry chocolate cupcakes were decorated with marzipan zombie fingers which included almond sliver fingernails and colored corn syrup blood. The frosting was also dusted with coco powder to resemble dirt. I wish I could claim the idea as my own, but I got it from the book A Zombie Ate My Cupcake by Lily Vanilli.
These strawberry and raspberry cupcakes served a dual purpose. I needed some cupcake shots for a design project I was doing, and I thought it would be nice to bring cupcakes for all my classmates for Valentine’s Day. I used ol’ Martha Stewart’s recipe for the cake and this cream cheese frosting recipe. They turned out great!
I had been baking cupcakes for a while when my brother and his wife asked me to cater the cupcakes for their wedding. Baking in this scale really got me excited about production baking. I learned a lot and started to perfect the craft. Since then, when I bake cupcakes, I bake a lot. Here are the flavors I made for the wedding:
- Vanilla cake with fresh blueberries with almond cream cheese frosting
- Chocolate cake with peanutbutter buttercream frosting
- Lemon cake with keylime buttercream frosting