Thursday, March 18, 2010

Green Velvet Cupcakes

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!
I present to you...
A HUGE thank you to my friend Jessica for sharing this recipe with me.

I had tried a few red velvet recipes but they were never as good as I had hoped, then she shared this recipe with me. Just the fact that it had sour cream in it made me fall instantly in love!!
And after one bite, you'll be in love too!!
Here's the recipe:

2½ cups flour

½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 tsp. baking soda

½ tsp. salt

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened

2 cups sugar

4 eggs

1 cup sour cream

½ cup milk

1 bottle (1 ounce) McCormick Red Food Color (or color of choice!!)

2 tsp. Vanilla Extract

Preheat oven to 350°. Mix flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt in medium bowl. Set aside.

Beat butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed 5 minutes or until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Mix in sour cream, milk, food color and vanilla.
Gradually beat in flour mixture on low speed until just blended. Do not overbeat. Spoon batter into paper-lined muffin cups, filling each cup two-thirds full.

Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted into cupcake comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire rack 5 minutes. Remove from pans; cool completely. Frost with vanilla cream cheese frosting (optional).

A note from me - I actually put buttercream frosting on these puppies because I didn't want to worry about refrigerating them (not that they would have lasted long enough to have any LEFT to refrigerate, but you see my point!!).

This batter makes A LOT...I made 2 dozen cupcakes AND an 8x8 single layer cake (in a Pyrex pan).

Please leave a comment if you try the recipe and let us know what you thought. Make sure you watch them in the oven, I could see where if these get overcooked they wouldn't be nearly as good as they could be!! They are VERY moist and I can guarantee you'll want to keep plenty for yourself!!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Birthday fun

OK, so for our son's first birthday I decided to save the $40 I would have normally spent on a character cake from Albertson's and make one myself. This was my first attempt at any kind of cake decorating - and let's face it - it was for a 1-year-old's birthday party. This means it was a very cheesy themed Cars cake with not much detail...but it was cute for the kid and it was fun to try!!

Experience breeds excellence and I learned A LOT from just this one decorating experience!!!

- Despite how easy it is to make, DO NOT use marshmallow fondant for decorating a sticks to EVERYTHING!!!!

- To get deep, rich colors you are going to use half the little container of colored gel dye....keep adding it, it will eventually turn the color you want - but don't be stingy on the amount!!

- It pays to have the right tools for the job - a rolling mat, a fondant roller, etc.

- You can never have enough powdered sugar when working with fondant, good thing it's cheap at Wal-Mart.

- A KitchenAid mixer has yet again proved to be a PRICELESS tool in my kitchen. I made the fondant in it, the frosting....the possibilities are endless!!

- Homemade buttercream frosting is 10 times better than any canned frosting!! And honestly, it is cheaper than the canned stuff in the long run!!!

- It's ok to use a box mix for the cake part - it saves you stress and allows you to focus on everything else!!

This was a lot of fun, and I can't wait to try again with all the new knowledge I've gained!! I already took a small cake I made and rolled out and covered it with some fondant. It was a bright yellow little piece of heaven!! It tasted yummy and looked super cute...I am working my way up to covering an entire cake with fondant!!!

A yummy looking recipe...

I haven't made these yet - my mother-in-law's recipe for cinnamon rolls is the best in the world and I don't want her to think I have abandoned her recipe....

This is a recipe for CHOCOLATE cinnamon rolls!!! How yummy does that sound?? Obvioulsy this was not meant to be eating as part of a healthy breakfast, I think it's more of a dessert.

So, sometime in the near future I will be trying these, and I will post pics!!

Chocolate Cinnamon Rolls