baking beast

a suspicious creature has been lurking around the streets, leaving behind delights that dreams are made of. what's to become of this baking beast?

Monday, January 16, 2006

Cupcakes, my new addiction



Mmm.. I'm DEFINITELY buying into the whole cupcake craze right now... they are soooo darn good. And cute. And fun and easy to make. And great to share with friends. :)

So, for all of the above reasons, I made cupcakes recently! (Twice, actually) Both times, I used cupcake recipes from Julie Hasson's 125 Best Cupcakes. Coincidentally, they were on the two pages that were right next to each other! And actually, both coffee-themed. :) I only got pictures of my most recent ones, and these are the Malted Espresso Cupcakes. I made my own frosting off of the cream cheese frosting from More from Magnolia adding dissolved instant coffee to it. I doubled the recipe to feed plenty of happy mouths. (And have plenty of extras for myself!) I wasn't sure what the malted milk was going to be like in a baked good since I have never done that before...but it turned out great! The flavor isn't TOO strong but it's still there and matches with the espresso quite well.

The other cupcake I made was the Cappuccino Cupcakes and I made half the recipe for Coffee Buttercream in her book as well. Except I wasn't really thinking at the time so I thought the 1 cup of butter it called for equaled 4 sticks of butter so when I was halving it, I ended up using 2 sticks when 1/2 cup is only 1 stick of butter!! But no matter...the extra stick of butter was certainly not noticed and actually everybody loooveed the frosting, so that extra stick is staying there! I have to say, I like the Cappuccino Cupcakes more..it was definitely coffee-packed but sooo good that way. It was quite moist and with the chocolate chips mixed in and the coffee buttercream on top... it was just way too good. But both cupcakes were FANTASTIC! :) I can't wait to make more out of this book... it is strongly recommended to any cupcake fan! I also can't wait until my most recent purchase... Cupcakes Year Round, comes! I'm all set to go to make batches upon batches of cupcakes and am now a cupcake addict.



Malted Espresso Cupcakes
From 125 Best Cupcakes
Makes 12 Cupcakes

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup malted milk powder
1/4 cup freshly brewed espresso or dark roast coffee
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla

1. In a small bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, and salt.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together malted milk powder and espresso until smooth.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, butter and eggs until smooth. Alternately whisk in flour mixture and espresso mixture, making three additions of flour and two of espresso, beating until smooth.
4. Scoop batter into prepared pan. Bake in preheated 350ºF oven for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown and tops of cupcakes spring back when lightly touched. Let cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely on rack. Top cooled cupcakes with frosting.


Cappuccino Cupcakes
From 125 Best Cupcakes
Makes 12 Cupcakes

1 cup all purpose flour
1 tbsp finely ground coffee
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp instant coffee granules
1 tsp warm water
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla
1 egg
2/3 cup sour cream
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

1. In a small bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and ground coffee.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together instant coffee and water.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, oil and egg until smooth. Whisk in instant coffee mixture and vnilla. Alternately whisk in flour mixture and sour cream, making three additions of flour mixture and two of sour cream, beating until smooth. Mix in chocolate chips.
4. Scoop batter into prepared pan. Bake in preheated 350ºF oven for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown and tops of cupcakes spring back when lightly touched. Let cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely on rack. Top cooled cupcakes with frosting.


Coffee Buttercream
Adapted from 125 Best Cupcakes
Makes enough to frost 12 cupcakes

2 sticks unsalted butter (The original uses 1 stick), at room temperature
1 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
Pinch salt
1 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp instant coffee granules
1 tsp hot coffee (I just used hot water)
1 tsp coffee-flavored liqeuer, such as Kahlua

1. In a small bowl, using and electric mixer on low speed, beat together butter, sugar, and salt until well combined. Increase speed to high and beat until light and fluffy. Add vanilla, beating until frosting is smooth.
2. In a small bowl, mix together coffee granules, hot coffee and liqeuer. Stir until dissolved and cool completely.
3. Add cooled coffee mixture to butter mixture, beating until smooth, creamy, and well mixed.
4. Spread icing over cooled cupcakes with knife or pipe decoratively.


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