Sunday, June 27, 2010

Gâteau au Yaourt avec Glace de Chocolat

I found the cake recipe at Chocolate and Zuchinni and it sounded delicious! I knew I had to try it immediately! So I did! The recipe doesn't call for frosting, but the cupcakes just looked so plain, I had to do something!! I decided I was going to make homemade fresh strawberry butter-cream frosting. Let me tell you, there have been some weiiiiiiiiird things going on in my kitchen... Things aren't mixing the way they should. So, instead I made the Chocolate Glaze, except that I didn't exactly have all of the ingredients (hee hee), so I improvised.

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Makes: 12 regular sized cupcakes

2 eggs
1 C plain yogurt
1 C sugar
1/3 C vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp light rum (I used Coconut rum)
2 C unbleached flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
2. In a large mixing bowl, mix the eggs, yogurt, sugar, oil, vanilla, and rum.
3. In another bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, and baking soda.
3. Mix the flour mixture with the yogurt mixture until completely mixed and there are no white streaks left.
4. Pour the batter into twelve cupcake wrappers, until 1/2 inch from the top.
5. Bake for 20 minutes.
6. Let the cupcakes cool before topping with frosting, or serve plain.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Makes: 2 cups of glaze

1 C heavy whipping cream
2 tbsp butter
3 tbsp light corn syrup *
9 oz semi sweet chocolate chips **
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
* I didn't have corn syrup, so I Googled a substitute and came up with honey
**I used about 2 1/2 C of chocolate, 4 oz being unsweetened because of the added sweetness from the honey

1. In a medium saucepan over low heat, heat the cream and butter, and corn syrup (or honey) until the cream is hot and the butter has melted. There should be tiny bubbles, and the temperature should read about 175°F. DO NOT LET THE MIXTURE BOIL.
2. Remove the pan from the heat and add the chocolate chips. Let the mixture sit for 30 seconds.
3. Add the vanilla and whisk the mixture until smooth and creamy, and all of the chocolate has melted.

Let me start out by saying this cupcake is rather plain. Next time I might use a Vanilla Yogurt, or glaze the top with a lot of sugar so it will brown. I may add fruits to it next time, as that will enhance the flavor. It is a dense but airy cake, and it is VERY plain. But you know what, it was an experiment, as all are my recipes and attempts at recipes.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Mississippi Mud Cupcakes

A treat for my dad for Father's Day! I had my parents over for Father's Day and made lasagna (I wish it was home-made, but I was exhausted after the days activities), garlic bread, and cupcakes. This recipe was rather easy, and my dad enjoyed licking the batter out of the bowl when I was done (something that was not allowed by my sister and me when we were kids). The recipe comes from Cupcakes! by Elinor Klivans.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Makes: 24 regular cupcakes

20 Oreo-like cookies, cut into 1/2- to 1/4-inch peices
6 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips
Classic Chocolate Cupcake Mix

Classic Chocolate Cupcake Mix:
3 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 C unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 C unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/4 C sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 C sour cream
1/2 C water

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
2. Chop the Oreo-like cookies. I used a Pampered Chef Food Chopper, once on two cookies, rotated and once more.
3. Put the chocolate in a double boiler, and stir until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Remove from the heat, and set it aside to let it cool
4. Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and set aside.
5. In a large electric mixing bowl, whip the butter and sugar until smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Stop the mixer and scrape the bowl if necessary.
6. On a low speed, mix the melted chocolate in the butter mixture.
7. On a medium speed, add the eggs, one at a time, until the batter is smooth.
8. Add the vanilla, mix about 1 minute.
9. Mix in the sour cream until completely blended, no white streaks.
10. On a low sweep, add half of the flour mixture.
11. Mix in the water.
12. Mix in the remaining flour mixture until completely smooth.
13. Put the cupcake wrappers in a cupcake tin.
14. Put enough chopped cookies to cover the bottom of the cupcake liner, in a single layer.
15. Put about 1 tablespoon of chocolate chips on top of the chopped cookies, about 8-10 chips.
16. Put 1/4 cup of batter in each liner, to about 1/3 inch from the top.
17. Cover the tops of the cupcakes with more chopped cookies and chocolate chips and pat them into the batter so they stick a little.
18. Bake for 22 minutes.
19. Let the cupcakes cool before serving.

The recipe called for drizzled chocolate on the top, but I didn't think it needed it because of the chocolate chips on the top of the cupcake.

The cupcakes came out looking great, and smelling even better! I finally gave in and tasted one of my creations, and ohemgee it was amazing!! I couldn't eat a whole one because I don't have much of a sweet tooth, so my dad finished mine, after his.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Homemade French Fries

Again, not cupcakes, but homemade! These came out tasty, and a VERY VERY BIG THANK YOU to my husband for cleaning up the kitchen after the adventure we had with the French fries.

Prep Time: 10-15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Makes: However much you want (I used 12 potatoes)

12 potatoes
1 gallon vegetable oil or peanut oil (I used vegetable oil)

1. Preheat the vegetable oil (or peanut oil) in a large pot (or stock pot).
2. Peel the potatoes (if you want), and cut the potatoes.
3. Drop the potatoes into the oil, and set sit for about 3-5 minutes, or until the texture you prefer (crunchy, soft, tender, etc)
4. Pull the potatoes out of the oil and place on a plate with a paper towel.
5. Salt as you like while the potatoes are still a bit wet from the oil.

I used the Pampered Chef Apple Peeler/Corer/Slicer to peel the skin, make curly fries, and make regular fries (from the core, cut into thin strips) and then decided to leave the skins on the curly fries for the second batch. I also took a potato or two and just made big slices, like big round steak fries.

For an this experience, I learned a lot, but I definitely want to make some more, they came out delicious!!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Homemade Corndogs!

So it may not be baking, but it is homemade, and I like homemade! They came out amazing, tasty, and the leftover batter turned into a nice big hushpuppy!!

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Makes: 14-16 corndogs

1 C yellow cornmeal
1 C unbleached flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
1/4 C honey
4 tsp baking powder
1 egg
1 C milk
1 quart vegetable oil for frying (** I used one gallon and a large stockpot)
1/4 C cornstarch or flour
14-16 all-beef hot dogs
16 wooden skewers

1. Preheat the vegetable oil in a large pot (or stock pot).
2. Mix the cornmeal, flour, salt, pepper, honey, baking powder, egg, and milk with an electric mixer. Stop the mixer and scrape the bowl if necessary.
3. Dry off the hot dogs, and lightly cover in cornstarch or flour.
4. Skewer the hot dogs.
5. Dip the hot dogs in the batter until absolutely covered in batter.
6. Drop the freshly dipped hot dog into the hot oil for roughly 2-3 minutes until the outside is nice and golden brown.
7. Pull the corndog out of the oil and let it dry on some paper towels.
8. I poured the leftover batter straight into the hot oil to make the hushpuppies. Attempt it all in one shot, because it will come out looking more like funnel cake than a hushpuppy.

This is a homemade hushpuppy. If you make them, and one comes out this big, cook it longer than you would think. The inside of mine was still uncooked, and I would have preferred a crunchier outside.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Vanilla Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes

This recipe is easy, and very fun to make! Follow the recipe and directions from here for the batter and three recipes from here and here for the frosting, then let your friends or family top the cupcakes as they please!

I filled ice cream cones about 2/3 full, instead of cupcake liners and baked the cupcakes for 26 minutes. Then I whipped up the Whipped Cream Cheese Frosting from here, and added some chocolate (which tasted like hot chocolate) to 1/4 of the batch, coffee to another 1/4 of the batch, and chocolate and coffee (for a mocha flavor), to another 1/4 of the batch and had four different flavorings to mix and match with! The flavorings came from here.

Sunday, June 06, 2010

Lemon Meringue Cupcakes

Let me start off by saying, this recipe was a lot different than I expected. I really didn't like the name of the original recipe, so I've changed the name as I've changed the recipe to my liking. The original recipe was called Lemon Coconut Snowballs, and I chose not to use coconut, but instead blueberries. I was originally going to do the Lemon Blueberry Cupcakes, but that calls for boxed cake, and I've decided to stick to homemade recipes.

Prep Time: 15-20 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Makes: 12 cupcakes (I tripled the recipe for 36 cupcakes)

The single batch is first, the triple batch is in parenthesis. 
1 1/3 C (4 C) Cake Flour
1 tsp (1 tbsp) Baking Powder
1/8 tsp (3/8 tsp) salt
6 tbsp (18 tbsp) whole milk
1 tsp (1 tbsp) vanilla extract
1/4 tsp (3/4 tsp) almond extract
6 tbsp  (18 tbsp) butter
1 C (3 C) sugar
6 (18) egg whites
1/4 tsp (3/4 tsp) cream of tartar

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and butter or line with paper cups 1 12-count muffin tin.
2. In a large bowl briefly whisk together the cake flour, baking powder, and salt. 
3. In a small bowl, mix the milk, vanilla extract, and almond extract. 
4. Mix the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Stop the mixer and scrape the bowl if necessary. 
5. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture into the batter, followed by 1/2 the milk mixture, another 1/3 of the flour mixture, the last 1/2 of the flour mixture, followed by the last 1/3 of the flour mixture until it is evenly mixed and there are no streaks of flour. Stop the mixer and scrape the bowl to incorporate any clumps of the flour mixture. Set aside this mixture. 

6. In another large bowl, using clean beaters (or a whisk), beat the egg whites and cream of tartar on low speed for 1 minute, then medium-high until soft peaks form. 
7. On a low speed, add the batter mixture to the egg mixture 
8. Fill each cupcake liner to 1/4 inch from the top.. 
9. Bake at 350°F on the middle rack for 23 minutes, so that a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean.

Lemon Filling:
Prep Time: 0 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Makes: 1 cup (I tripled the recipe to make 3 cups)

The single batch is first, the triple batch is in parenthesis. 
1/4 C (3/4 C) butter
1/3 C (1 C) fresh lemon juice
2 (6) eggs
2 (6) egg whites
1 C (3 C) sugar
2 tbsp (6 tbsp) cornstarch
1/4 C (3/4 C) water
1 tsp (1 tbsp) fresh lemon zest

1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter and add the lemon juice to the butter. Do not let the mixture boil.
2. Dissolve the cornstarch in the water and set aside.
3. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, yolks, and sugar. Stop the mixer and scrape the bowl if necessary. Then add the dissolved cornstarch.
4. Continue mixing the egg mixture and add the lemon and butter mixture.
5. Heat the entire mixture over medium heat and continuously stir until the mixture is very thick (about 6 minutes). Do not let the mixture boil.
6. Remove the lemon mixture from heat and mix in the lemon zest.
7. Move the mixture to a freezer safe bowl and press plastic wrap onto the surface of the filling and poke holes in it with a toothpick to let the steam out.
8. Freeze (or refrigerate) the mixture to let it cool and thicken.

**This recipe was tripled and made too much filling, so I filled the cupcakes and then topped the cupcakes with some filling and then frosting.

Prep Time: 0 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Makes: WAY TOO MUCH FROSTING!! (And I tripled it!)

The single batch is first, the triple batch is in parenthesis. 
1 1/4 C (3 3/4 C) sugar
1/3 C (1 C) water
3 (9) egg whites
1/4 tsp (3/4 tsp) cream of tartar
1 tsp (1 tbsp) vanilla extract
1/4 tsp (3/4 tsp) almond extract

1. Mix the sugar, water, egg whites, and cream of tartar in a double boiler with a handheld electric mixer on high speed.
2. Beat until stiff peaks form, about 7 minutes.
3. Remove from the heat and mix in the vanilla extract and almond extract.
4. Beat for 2 more minutes to further thicken the frosting.

**I didn’t have a handheld electric mixer, and you really need one. My frosting did not come out stiff like a meringue, but worked nonetheless.
**Tripling this recipe made WAY too much frosting. A double batch would have been good.

Putting the cupcakes together:

Using the Pampered Chef Easy Accent Decorator I piped the frosting in the center of the cupcakes, then topped the cupcakes with the lemon filling. I then topped the lemon topped cupcakes with the meringue. I zested some lemon peel with the Pampered Chef Zester/Scorer which created little curly q's that I topped the cupcakes with them and frozen blueberries. I suggest using fresh blueberries as there isn't a lot of juice coming out of the blueberry. Fresh blueberries were not available so I opted for frozen.