Tequila Sunrise Cupcakes

Tequila Sunrise Cupcakes
June 16, 2013
DSC_1626
This weekend, I realized that a mixer was the greatest investment I made in baking this month, and I cannot believe that I didn’t purchase one earlier. Even a cheap Hamilton Beach 6-speed hand mixer saved me so much time and energy. This tequila sunrise cupcake was so delicious and moist. While mixing the ingredients, it didn’t look so tasty, as the acidity and the milk mixed together and appeared to curdle. But after baking for 20 minutes, it tasted mostly like orange with a sweet, but not too sweet, hint of the grenadine.

In addition frosting was so delicious that I wish I could share how it was. There was a bit of everything, and not one flavor was overpowering. All I have to say is that it needs to be remade and added in all cupcakes (including the surprise inside the cupcakes).

Overall, this cupcake was so delicious. It tastes even better when you have it with a tequila sunrise cocktail with it! Enjoy!

Xo,
JJC

DSC_1645

Recipe
Cake, yield 16
– 1/4 cup orange juice
– 1/2 cup buttermilk
– 2 tablespoons tequila
– 1 tablespoon grenadine
– 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
– 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
– 1 cup sugar
– 2 eggs
– 1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
– 1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
– 1/4 teaspoon salt
– 2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest

1. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and orange zest.
2. In a medium bowl, combine the buttermilk, orange juice, tequila, grenadine, and vanilla extract.
3. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
4. Add the eggs to the mixture one at a time.
5. Add the flour mixture and the liquids alternately, beating well after each addition.
6. Fill 16 cupcake liners about 2/3 full.
7. Bake at 325F for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
DSC_1615
DSC_1616

Frosting
– 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
– 1 tablespoon milk with 2 tablespoons of dissolved cornstarch
– 2 teaspoons tequila
– 1 tablespoon grenadine
– 2 tablespoon lime juice
– 2 1/2 cups confectioners sugar

Whip the butter until it is light and fluffy. Then add the liquids and the confectioner’s sugar until it is at a desired consistency.

DSC_1618

DSC_1655

DSC_1631

Coconut and Lime Cupcakes

Coconut and Lime Cupcakes
June 8, 2013

DSC_1606

My sister’s birthday is coming up. And now that my family has realized that I can actually bake desserts, they have commissioned me to make a cake, even though I don’t bake cakes. So I took a recipe for the cupcakes I normally made and poured it into a cake pan. I would say that it was a success.

For this recipe, I adapted a normal vanilla cake and the mojito cupcake recipe to create what I thought would be something light and tasty. The cake was fluffy and had a sweet coconut flavor and a kick of lime. To make it even better, I might replace the buttermilk with coconut milk. Since this was also to be a cake for my sister’s birthday, I doubled the amount I normally make. There was enough batter to make 8 cupcakes and a 9 inch cake.

Between making the batter, baking, cooling, and decorating, these cakes and cupcakes took up the entire afternoon. But it was totally worth it. The cake was delicious and makes for a nice summery treat.

Finally, HAPPY BIRTHDAY SAMMY!

Xo,
JJC

Recipe
Cake, yield 1 9-inch cake+8 cupcakes

DSC_15952 sticks unsalted butter
2 cup of granulated sugar
4 eggs, room temperature
1 ½ cup shredded baker’s coconut
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 cup buttermilk
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons lime zest

1. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and lime zest.
2. In a medium bowl, combine the buttermilk, lime juice, and vanilla extract.
3. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
4. Add the eggs to the mixture one at a time.
5. Add the flour mixture and the liquids alternately, beating well after each addition.
6. Fill 8 cupcake liners about 2/3 full and pour the rest of the batter into a cake pan.
7. Bake at 325 until each is golden brown. The cupcakes took about 20 minutes, while the cake took about 45 minutes.

Frosting
DSC_1597– 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
– 4 tablespoons cornstarch dissolved 3 tablespoons of warm milk
– 1 teaspoon vanilla
– 3 tablespoons lime juice
~ 4 cups of confectioner’s sugar

Whip the butter until it is light and fluffy. Then add the liquids and the confectioner’s sugar until it is at a desired consistency.

DSC_1609

DSC_1613

DSC_1604

Piña Colada Cupcakes

Piña Colada Cupcakes
May 10, 2013

DSC_1596

Happy summer vacation and happy packing up the dorm! I wasn’t originally planning on baking more before heading back home to Massachusetts for the summer, but there were too many baking supplies left over in the kitchen to let go to waste (#JenProblems). So using the ingredients I had left over and a can of pineapple juice, we make piña coladas! As a fan of piña coladas, I enjoyed this cupcake. The only two changes I would probably make would be to replace the baking soda with more baking powder so that it gives the cake a light, tropical feel. The second is the garnish; instead of the leftover baker’s coconut, cute pineapples chunks, little umbrellas, or maraschino cherries would be nice additions, but we’re operating on a student’s budget here, so shredded coconut it is. Overall, it was pretty yummy. It’s even more delicious when you throw in a homemade piña colada with your cupcake!

Recipe
Cake, yield 12
– 1/3 cup Bacardi white rum
– 3/4 coconut milk with vanilla
– 1/4 cup pineapple juice (canned, from Trader Joe’s)
– 1 teaspoon vanilla
– 1 3/4 cups of all-purpose flour
– 1 teaspoon baking soda
– 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
– 1/4 teaspoon salt
– 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
– 1 1/4 cups of granulated sugar
– 3 large eggs
– 1 cup of shredded baker’s coconut

1. In a small bowl, combine rum, coconut milk, pineapple juice, and vanilla. Set aside.
2. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and vanilla. Set aside.
3. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. It should be a pale, consistent mixture.
4. Add the eggs to the mixture one at a time.
5. Add the flour mixture and liquids, beating well after each addition.
6. Fold in the coconut.
7. Fill the cupcakes liners to about 2/3 full.
8. Bake at 350F for 20 minutes or until a golden brown color.

Frosting
– 3/4 cups unsalted butter, room temperature
– 1 1/2 tablespoons white rum
– 1 1/2 tablespoons pineapple juice
– 1 1/2 tablespoons coconut milk
– ~ 2 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar

Whip the butter until it is light and fluffy. Add the liquid ingredients and mix carefully. Slowly add the confectioner’s sugar until the mixture is solid. Add flour/sugar accordingly until the frosting is a desired consistency.photo-1

Mojito Cupcakes

photo

Done with finals! Done with junior year! What better way to celebrate than with a cocktail and a cocktail themed cupcake. The recipe for the cake used was from BrownEyedBaker. We followed the recipe almost exactly, except that, in the first step, we forgot about the milk and the mint on the stove and kind of let the milk froth. It was funny, but don’t forget about the milk; it could end in a dangerous disaster. The batter itself was very light and airy. Upon baking for 20 minutes, the cake itself reflected the light airiness of the batter. I highly recommend this recipe, since the cake was light, not too sweet, and had a nice light lime and rum taste. The frosting, a buttercream thickened with powdered sugar added a nice sweetness to the cake.

Finally, thank you to Melissa for sharing this recipe with me and to Mari for making the cupcakes with me! I really loved this recipe (they just keep on getting better!). The garnish with a slice of lime and a sprig of mint was a nice addition and gave the cupcakes some nice color. It was especially nice with the actual mojitos to accompany the cupcakes. Not a bad way to kick off summer, if you ask me!

Xo,
JJC

photo-1-1

photo-2

Lemon Cake with Raspberry Filling and Lemon Vanilla Frosting

DSC_1274

First, thanks to Nicole for the recipe and making the cupcakes with me! This cupcake is one of my favorites (to date, the chai and espresso is my absolute favorite). I would definitely add more batter to each cupcakes (fill about 3/4 of the way full, as opposed to 2/3 of the way full). But other than that, I can’t complain!

Cake
The recipe used was from Saifou.com. We kept to the recipe for the most part, but used all purpose flour. We also somehow made 24 cupcakes instead of 18. As a result of not using the cake flour and making more cupcakes than the recipe said it would make, the cake didn’t rise as much as they should have. They were fun-sized, if you will. Regardless, we just added more frosting, and the cake itself was delicious. The cake was had just the right hint of lemon and was not too sweet.

Filling
Using an apple corer (my favorite), we made holes in the cupcakes and piped in my uncle’s homegrown and homemade raspberry jam.
IMG_1742IMG_1746

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Frosting
I still haven’t figured out the perfect vanilla buttercream. Every single time I am unable to record what exactly I used because I keep on adding more of a certain ingredient until it tastes “good.” The frosting started out with 12 ounces of unsalted butter, 4 tablespoons of milk, 2 teaspoons of vanilla, and a lot of confectioner’s sugar. We added some of the lemon juice from the recipe to make it not taste so much like powdered sugar and began to lose track from there. I really wish I measured exactly how milk, lemon juice, sugar, and flour we used because it was delicious. Any suggestions on vanilla butter cream would be greatly appreciated!

IMG_1748-1

Chai Cupcakes with Espresso Frosting

DSC_1270

Cake
The recipe that I used was from TasteOfHome. Though the smell of the chai mix was overpowering when in it was in one bowl (ground ginger? Cardamon? All in one? Oh my!), the cake was perfect. The only change I made was that I replaced the 2% milk with buttermilk by adding 1/4 teaspoon of vinegar to 1% milk. I found the batter a bit too thick for a cupcake, so I just added a bit more milk.

Frosting
The recipe I used was an ad-hoc one. I made it hoping that it would taste good by adding random ingredients. It was delicious, if I do say so myself.

IMG_1501– 1/2 cup of softened unsalted butter
– 1.5 tablespoons of milk
– About 3 teaspoons of ground instant espresso powder dissolved in 1.5 tablespoons of hot water
– A dash of cinnamon
– About 2 cups of confectioner’s sugar
– 1 teaspoon of all-purpose flour

 

To make the frosting, mix all of the above ingredients together until the mixture is light and fluffy. I add some flour because I think it would be too sweet with solely confectioners sugar.

Overall
Overall, the cake was delicious. The cake wasn’t too sweet, so I used the apple corer to to remove the center and fill with the sweet espresso frosting. So yummy. No further words needed.

DSC_1277

DSC_1275

Irish Car Bomb Cupcakes

photo

In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, we decided to make Irish Car Bomb cupcakes from Brown Eyed Baker. The delightful treats consisted of a Guinness chocolate cake, Bailey’s vanilla whipped cream, and filled with an Irish whiskey chocolate ganache. Thank you Kelsey (Champagne Tuesdays) and Denise for joining! As complicated as the recipe was, it was delicious. We added a bit more whiskey and Bailey’s than the recipe called for. As a result, the recipe was a bit watery, and we had to add flour to thicken the frosting and the ganache. When making it, I would definitely recommend to have lots of counter space for the number of pans/plates that were required.

Guinness chocolate cake
The cake was very moist and has a faint taste of Guinness. We used Ghiradelli’s hot chocolate mix instead of the Dutch cocoa powder. As a result, the cake was nice and light. This complemented the rich buttercream and dense ganache. The only issue I had with this cake was that it was extremely watery (I’m not sure if it was because we didn’t let the Guinness butter simmer long enough). To thicken it, we added flour, which led to a delicious cake.

Bailey’s Vanilla Whipped Buttercream
The flavoring on the frosting was not very strong, so we had to add more Bailey’s. Instead of adding more sugar, we thickened the frosting with about 2 teaspoons of frosting.

Irish Whiskey Chocolate Ganache
Very delicious. We made too much ganache for the amount for the fill, since I used an apple corer to create the hole. We ended up using the extra ganache to decorate the cake.

Xo,
JJC

photo (1)

Maple Cupcakes

Maple Cupcakes

Recipe from Countryliving.com

Cake
I added extra maple syrup (1.5 cups) and some extra milk to make the batter a bit more moist. However, the overall flavor was still too light for the amount of maple syrup I put in. I would recommend more milk or even more maple syrup if you want to spend the money on a full bottle of maple syrup.

Frosting
The frosting was a vanilla buttercream, with a dash of maple syrup. The dash of maple syrup provided a nice touch, so then the frosting wasn’t just sugary butter. The consistency of the frosting was perfect. The maple syrup provided some liquid, but it was also made it so the frosting was smooth.

Overall
I don’t think I would make this recipe again because the maple flavor was so light that it didn’t taste like anything. I would recommend to add maple extract to give it more flavor. The cake was also a bit dry, even though I added more syrup than the recipe called for. A more economic option would probably be to make vanilla cupcakes with a thick maple buttercream.

Xo,
JJC

Honey Chamomile Cupcakes

Honey Chamomile Cupcakes

First, thank you to Sophia for coming up with the idea and making such delicious cupcakes. It was a very light tasting cupcake, which would be good for afternoon dessert. I never knew you could make a cupcake out of tea leaves. Next on the list will be chai cupcakes!

Recipe from Joy the Baker

Cake
The cake was very thick, and I thought it would rise in the oven. While it did rise with the heat, the cake immediately sank once it cooled (note the frosting to fill the crater). I would definitely add more rising agents. Perhaps increasing the baking soda from 1/2 a teaspoon to 1 teaspoon would do the trick.

Frosting (glaze)
We followed the recipe, and it was delicious. It was a thick glaze that wasn’t overly sweet and provided a nice complement to the light-tasting cake.

Xo,
JJC

Banana Cake with Chocolate Espresso Frosting

photo (2)

If you like bananas and chocolate, you’ll love this one. The dark chocolate taste complemented the sweet banana cake. It was also fun to use the remainder of the batter to make a small cake. I used extremely ripe bananas, which made the bananas very easy to mash. It also made the cake very moist.

Recipe
Cake
AllRecipes

Frosting
– 1/2 cup unsalted butter
– 2 tablespoons instant espresso dissolved in 1 tablespoon hot water
– 2 tablespoons milk
– 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
– 1 3/4 cups confectioner’s sugar

Xo,
JJC

photo-1