Linzer Cupcakes

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For the cake portion of the recipe use your go to vanilla recipe whether that be a from scratch recipe or a boxed recipe.

Linzer Style
Inspired by the Linzer torte cookie, this confection sandwiches fruit preserves between layers of cake. Follow these easy three-step directions:

1. Slice: With a sharp knife, remove the top from each cupcake. Use a small (1½-inch) cookie cutter to stamp out a favorite shape.

2. Sweeten: Place a small spoonful of preserves in the center of each cupcake. Sprinkle the tops with confectioners’ sugar.

3. Assemble: Holding it by the edges, carefully place each top on the bottom portion of the cupcake.

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Carrot Cupcakes

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A perfect snow day calls for a perfect recipe. Martha Stewart’s Carrot Cupcakes from her book Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes. I’m specifying as I’ve noticed that the online recipes vary from her book with ingredients and preparation.

Makes 24 cupcakes

Ingredients:

Carrot Cupcake:

1 Pound carrots, peeled and finely grated
3 large eggs, room temperature
1/3 cup buttermilk*
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup golden raisins (optional)
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

* I substituted buttermilk for the following : Measure 1 3/4 tablespoon cream of tartar plus 1 cup milk. Whisk to combine and let stand at room temperature for 5-10 minutes, until curdled and then stir.

** fun fact: I made my substitute buttermilk and accidentally used the entire 1 cup instead of the 1/3 cup that the recipe calls for. Was questioning myself as to why the batter was on the thin side. Ding ding ding ding. Turns out it made the carrot cupcakes SUPER moist. Sooo moist my husband states “wow, I’ve never had a carrot cake/cupcake so moist” I would recommend sticking to the 1/3 cup buttermilk but if you end up doing what I did it they are still edible.

Icing:

Recipe calls for Cream-Cheese Frosting, however I made mine with homemade vanilla frosting.

Cream-Cheese Frosting- makes 4 cups

1 cup (2 sticks) unsealed butter, room temperature
12 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1 pound (4 cups) confectioner’s sugar, sifted
3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat butter and cream cheese until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce speed to low. Add sugar 1/2 cup at a time, and then vanilla and mix until smooth and combined, scraping down sides of bowl as needed.

Vanilla Frosting- makes 4 cups

1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalaried butter, room temperature
1 pound (4 cups) confectioner’s sugar, sifted
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1. With an electric mixer, beat butter on medium- high speed until pale and creamy, about 2 minutes.

2. Reduce speed to medium. Add the confectioner’s sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down sides of bowl. After every two additions, raise speed to high and beat 10 seconds to aerate frosting, the return to medium. This process should take about 5 minutes. Frosting will be very pale and fluffy.

3. Add vanilla, and beat until frosting is smooth. If not using immediately, frosting can be refrigerated up to 10 days in an airtight container. Before using, bring to room temperature, and beat on low speed until smooth again, about 5 minutes.

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners. Whisk together carrots, eggs, buttermilk*, sugar, oil, vanilla and raisins (optional). In another bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt cinnamon, ginger and cloves. Stir flour mixture into carrot mixture until well combined.

2. Divide batter evenly among lined cups, filling each three- quarters full. Bake until a cake tester inserted in centers comes out clean, 23 to 28 minutes. Transfer tins to wire rack to cool 10 minutes; turn out cupcakes onto racks and let cool completely. Cupcakes can be stored overnight at room temperature, or frozen up to 2 months, in airtight containers.

3. To finish, use a small offset spatula to spread cupcakes with a mound of frosting. Refrigerate up to 3 days in airtight containers; bring to room temperature and, if desired, garnish with toasted coconut.

#cupcakethursday 8.2.12

Candied. Bacon. Cupcakes.

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Candied Bacon

1 pound bacon slices or thick-cut bacon slices. (I used low sodium)
1/3 cup (packed) golden brown sugar

Preparation

Position 1 rack in top third of oven and preheat to 400°F. Line large rimmed baking sheet with foil. Place large rack on lined baking sheet. Arrange brown sugar coated bacon slices in single layer on rack. I noticed if you sprinkle brown sugar on the bacon while already on the rack excess sugar will fall underneath the rack and start to burn. Bake until bacon is crisp and glazed, 15 to 18 minutes. Cool 5 minutes and serve.

#cupcakethursday 7.26.12

Salty & Sweet- Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel cupcake.

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#cupcakethursday 07.19.12

Pucker up. Lemon buttercream with lemon zest and lemon cake.

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Cupcake batter for this particular #cupcakethursday was a boxed mix. I tend to gravitate towards Duncan Hines for cake mixes, in a time crunch this is the way to go.

Lemon Buttercream Frosting

Ingredients:

1 cup unsalted butter, softened

3 cups confectioners sugar

1 tsp vanilla

2 tsp lemon juice

Pinch of salt

Lemon zest and nonpareil for garnish

Directions:

Beat butter, sugar, and salt until light and fluffy (3-5 minutes, depending on desired consistency). Add vanilla and lemon juice. Beat until combined.

#cupcakethursday 6.28.12

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Vanilla on Vanilla.

#cupcakethursday 6.21.12

Cool cool summer.

#cupcakethursday 6.14.12

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Get me s’mores.

This recipe is pretty simple. When you have a 2 yr old running around time is of the essence.

Ingredients-

Cake: Devils Food cake mix.

Marshmallow: Fluff from the jar.

Graham Cracker: Pre-crumbled graham cracker. Huge time saver.

Chocolate: Hershey’s milk chocolate bars.

Directions-

  1. Bake and cool the cupcakes.
  2. Spread a small amount of fluff on the cooled cupcake. To get a brown top / crunch I placed small batches under the broiler. I found that adding a few of the graham cracker crumbs pre-broil tasted best however  watch that they don’t burn. About 1 minute under the broiler should be fine.
  3. Now that the marshmallow has a toasted top I poked a small whole on the top to insert the Hershey’s chocolate bar.
  4. Add additional graham cracker crumbs
  5. Try to serve within a few hours of toasting the top. I found that a few started to soften and drip with marshmallow.

cupcakes love and sweets   xo

#cupcakethursday 6.7.12

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Pretty in Red Velvet

#cupcakethursday

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Every Thursday for the last month and a half I have been making cupcakes for my co-workers. The cupcakes are a combination of homemade and store bought ingredients.