Posts tagged ‘cupcakes’

April 4, 2011

Teddy Bear Cupcakes for a Teddy Bear Picnic

 

Teddy Bear Cupcakes

I know I’ve been on a bit of a hiatus, but honestly, it hasn’t been without good reason. We’ve had some major life-changing events in the past few weeks that have kept me pretty busy.

A short summary of the past few weeks for us:

– I ‘matched’ into a surgical residency position. This basically means that I got my first job! I know that I’ll have to work harder than I ever have in my life, but the way I look at it is that I’ll be doing exactly what I want to be doing (surgery)…I’ll just be doing a whole lot of it. So I’m thrilled to start this new stage in my medical education.

-My husband graduated from his MBA program in the top 20 percent of his class. For the past two years, he’s been working full time and doing a weekend MBA program and I am extremely proud of him for graduating and doing so well.

-We started looking for a home. This was so exciting at first, but it’s been a bit of a roller coaster. We lost one home to another offer and are now in a bidding war on another home. Maybe it’s some sort of first-time-home-buyers curse? Anyways, I’m hoping it works out.

So as you see, it’s been busy, but hopefully things will slow down a bit and I can actually update it now since I have lots of great recipes waiting to be posted.

These cupcakes were made together with my good friend and great baking buddy Bree (who I know I’ve mentioned several times in this blog). Her daughter turned one last weekend and since her nickname is Brynne Bear, Bree thought that it was most appropriate to throw her a teddy bear picnic. She actually found this recipe in the Jewish Chronicle Online (a bit random) but these were  so adorable a cinch to make. For the base cupcake, we used my favorite Hershey’s Perfectly Chocolate Cake batter…always a winner.The frosting wasn’t overly sweet, which was a perfect contrast to the cupcakes. The only catch with the frosting is that the directions were in grams and while this was not a problem for me (since I recently purchased a kitchen scale to make macarons with), I know that many people do not own a scale. Bree and I were having a bit too much fun baking, chatting and sipping wine that I didn’t think to count how much chocolate and butter 75 grams is, but I will definitely take note of this next time.  And the decorations? Well, I think they speak for themselves. Bree reported back that everyone was very impressed, especially the birthday girl.

Happy Birthday Brynne!

Teddy Bear Chocolate Cupcakes

For the cupcakes

Ingredients

2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cups Hershey’s Cocoa
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake tins with liners.
Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes.
Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Fill cups 2/3 full with batter. Bake 22 to 25 minutes. Cool completely. Frost.

For the frosting:

Ingredients:

75g semisweet baking chocolate
75g butter
2 tsp powdered sugar
pinch of salt

Directions:

Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of warm water, then allow to cool for five minutes.
Beat the butter and sugar together with a pinch of salt, then beat in the cooled chocolate.
The icing will be very soft, so refrigerate for 20-30 minutes, stirring halfway through until firmer, but spreadable. Swirl the buttercream over the cakes using a palette knife.

For the decorations:

Ingredients:

Ready to roll white icing
Chocolate buttons
Chocolate M&Ms
Black writing icing

Directions:

Make small balls of white icing and flatten into oval shapes.
Place in the center of each cupcake and attach and M&M for the nose using a little of the writing icing.
Draw on a mouth using a tube of black writing icing and add chocolate buttons for ears and M&Ms for eyes.

Source: Hershey’s Perfectly Chocolate Cake , The Jewish Chronicle Online

February 5, 2011

Raspberry Cheesecake Cupcakes

 

Raspberry Cheesecake Cupcakes

I’m pretty sure that unless a person is lactose intolerant, there is absolutely no way for them to dislike cheesecake. So when my mother approached me the other day to make a dessert for her to take to work for a coworker’s birthday, I immediately thought of cheesecake cupcakes. Of course, Valentine’s Day is on my mind already so I couldn’t just make plain old cheesecake cupcakes, so I searched for a way to make them more festive, and stumbled upon Annie’s version of them that involved swirling raspberries into the top layer of them to create a beautiful finished marbled appearance.

After my mother called me the next day telling me that the cupcakes got rave reviews at work, I knew I had to bring them into work myself. Now, I have this rule about call nights. I always bring in baked goods when I’m on call. It makes call so much more pleasant for both myself (because seriously, who doesn’t want to be eating cheesecake on call between ICU admissions) and for the residents who are on with me.

Now, I usually don’t post blog entries on the weekends, but this post is for my mother….because her coworkers have been tirelessly asking her to bring the cheesecake cupcakes to work again. So here you go mom! Enjoy making these this weekend!

Raspberry Cheesecake Cupcakes

Ingredients

For the crust:
9 Honey Graham crackers
4 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted

For the filling:
16 oz cream cheese, softened
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup sugar

For the topping:
6 oz raspberries
2 Tbsp Sugar

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375° F. Line 12 cups of a mini muffin tin with paper liners.
For the crust, break the cinnamon graham crackers into chunks and pulse them in a food processor until they are fine crumbs.
With the crumbs in the food processor, pulse while slowly pouring in the melted butter until combined and resembling wet sand. Divide the crumbs between 12 cups of the prepared mini muffin tin, pressing the crumbs into the bottom and a little bit up the sides to form the crust. Set aside.
For the filling, beat softened cream cheese and egg in a medium bowl or in the bowl of a stand electric mixer until smooth and thoroughly combined.
Add vanilla and sugar, and continue beating until combined. Spoon the filling into each mini muffin cup, filling almost to the top.
To make the raspberry puree, combine the raspberries and sugar in a blender or food processor. Process until smooth, then pour through a fine mesh sieve to remove the seeds.
Dot a ½ teaspoon of the raspberry puree in a few dots over the cheesecake filling. Use a toothpick or a wooden skewer to lightly swirl and create a marbled effect.
Bake for 15 minutes, until the tops are no longer glossy and the centers are set.
Remove the cheesecakes from the pan and set on a wire rack to allow the cheesecakes to cool about 30 minutes at room temperature.
After 30 minutes, continue cooling the cheesecakes in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
Once cool, store cheesecakes in the refrigerator in an airtight container until ready to serve.

Sources: Adapted from: Craving Chronicles and Annie’s Eats

My mother's food styling of Cheesecake Cupcakes

January 21, 2011

Dark Chocolate Mocha Cupcakes with Coffee Buttercream Frosting

 

Mocha Cupcakes with Coffee Buttercream Frosting

Be forewarned, these cupcakes are rich and decadent and absolutely irresistable.

That’s why I knew when I brought them into the office last week for one of the attendings’ birthdays, they would go over well. To begin with, this particular attending has a serious  love of coffee. He buys coffee beans from all over the world and mixes it with crazy  ingredients and roasts it…and it’s delicious.

When I found  out that he was having a birthday lunch (note, when I find out that someone is having a birthday party, I get a compulsion to bake), I knew  I just had to make cupcakes with coffee in them. These don’t just ‘have coffee in them’, but there’s coffee in the batter and in the frosting. To top it all off (no pun intended), they are topped with chocolate-covered espresso beans.

Needless to say, everyone in the office thoroughly enjoyed the cupcakes …even though they had just plain Eight O’Clock coffee in them and not fancy Nicaraguan or South African coffee.

Dark Chocolate Mocha Cupcakes with Coffee Buttercream Frosting

Ingredients

Cupcakes
3/4 cup cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup cocoa powder
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1/3 cup buttermilk
1 large egg
1 egg white
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 tablespoons strong coffee (or three tablespoons warm water mixed with 1 tablespoon instant coffee)

Frosting
4 tbsp butter, softened
2 tbsp warm water
1 tbsp instant coffee
1 tsp vanilla
3 cups powdered sugar

Chocolate covered espresso beans for topping

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 F and line a 12-cupcake pan with liners.
Whisk together all the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, sugar, and cocoa) in a medium bowl.
Beat the egg and egg white gently with a fork, then stir in the buttermilk, vanilla, melted butter, and coffee. Pour into the dry ingredients and mix until most of the lumps are gone. Divide evenly among the cupcake tins and bake for about 15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean.
Transfer the cupcakes to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the frosting, dissolve the coffee in the warm water. Beat the butter, coffee-water, and vanilla in a stand mixer. Add the powdered sugar and beat until creamy and spreadable, adding a few drops of milk if too dry. Pipe onto the cooled cupcakes.

Top with chocolate covered espresso beans.

Adapted from: Cate’s World Kitchen