Thursday, July 28, 2011

Coconut Cupcakes

Oh Goodness! Where has the summer gone!? I had such plans with my kiddos and better start packing it in over the next month!! I am having some friends over Sunday for dinner and am excited for the desserts I am making. Hope they are good enough to post and share with you. Here is a is chocolate and peanut butter and the other is fruity and light. They should balance each other perfectly! Also this weekend I am making some women's shoes sugar cookies...should be cute. Til then, here is the cupcake recipe to go with the key lime cupcakes I posted last week. The frosting recipe will come tomorrow along with a teaser list of recipes to come.

Coconut Cupcakes
Source: changed slightly from Restless Chipotle

3 sticks butter, room temp.
2 cups sugar
5 large eggs
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1 1/4 cup buttermilk
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. coconut extract
1 1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut
I stirred in an additional 3/4 cup sweetened shredded coconut

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line cupcake pans. Cream butter and sugar til light and fluffy. Switch to low speed and add eggs. Separately in a small bowl, mix together dry powder ingredients. Using a blender, blend coconut and 1 1/2 cups sw. shredded coconut. Stir flavorings into buttermilk/coconut mixture. Into your butter/sugar, add 1/3 of the dry ingredients from separate bowl, and 1/2 of the buttermilk. Repeat adding the flour in 3 parts and the buttermilk in 2 parts. This is where I added the additional 3/4 cup coconut. I just wanted mine a little more coconutty. Fill each liner 3/4 full. Bake for 20 minutes.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Sugar and Spice

So it truly feels like EVERYONE is having girls right now! My friend and I did a shower for one of our besties and I was sooo excited to make this fun and girly cake. We now have 2 friends, yes 2 friends, who are both pregnant with twin girls! One is identical and one is not. Here is to more girls and more fun showers! Side note: Since this was a shower for a friend who is not birthing her first child, we called it a baby sprinkle instead. So fun!

Go here for a tutorial on how to make this easy peasy ruffle cake!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Happy Birthday America!

So my friend had her baby on July 2nd of last year and decided to do a 4th of July themed barbecue for her little girl's birthday. Being the clever, caring, creative gal I am, I of coursed jumped at the chance to make a cake. I am too kind, I know. We got together and had quite the party creating this little concoction. A couple of hours and a bag of Twizzlers later, baby Gwyneth had this festive patriotic cake to celebrate her birthday, as well as that of this marvelous land. Hope you all had a safe and happy holiday as well!

This became a two layer cake covered in fondant. It was actually pretty delicious and all the kids at the party were quite impressed. We put sparklers in the top which was really fun. Maybe not super safe to do indoors, but super fun. And hey, fun is what I am all about!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Key Lime Coconut Cupcakes

The night before I left for Mexico I made about 100 of these babies for a customer. She requested key lime cupcakes because the party colors were green and pink. (we also did strawberry for her). I had never made key lime cupcakes before and all the blogs I truly trust didn't have a recipe for these. So...I found four recipes on line and made her samples the week before. Out of the four recipes, these are a combination of two and won the taste contest. Tried and true deliciousness from The Bakery Box. Any filled cupcake takes a little extra time. The curd can be made the day before to save a little time on baking day. I should do a post on how I fill a cupcake, shouldn't I? Hold on to your seats folks...that will be coming...!! These cupcakes introduce three new recipes for you. They are coconut cupcakes filled with lime curd. The frosting is Swiss Meringue Buttercream with lime curd folded in. Wow!!! Today I will share with you the recipe for the lime curd and then the recipes for the cupcakes and frosting will follow later in the week.

Key Lime Curd
Source: The Restless Chipotle

1 cup sugar
5 large egg yolks (save the will need them for the frosting recipe!)
1 cup key lime juice (I used regular lime juice)
1/2 cup butter, chilled

Mix the sugar and egg yolks in a large microwave safe bowl. (The first time I did this, I used a four cup glass measuring cup. It wasn't big enough and the curd kept bubbling over. It was sooo annoying. The second time I made this, I doubled the curd recipe and used a big plastic bowl. It didn't bubble over once. WAY easier!) Whisk in the lime juice. Microwave for about two minutes. Stop, and stir the lime curd well. Microwave for about 6-10 more minutes. BUT... stop and stir every 30 -60 seconds as you see it bubbling. You know the curd is done when the mixture is thick like gravy and sticks to the back of the spoon you are stirring with. Remove from the microwave and stir in the cold butter cut in cubes. Refrigerate until set. Should be the consistency of pudding.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Lego Cupcakes

I am not just saying this because I have three boys....but boy toys are SOOOO much cooler than girl toys. Any of you who have a little guy knows what I am talking about. It starts with the train stage. Nothing cuter than a boy and his train set. Then they start playing with "guys." Enter the world of super heroes...Star Wars, Superman, Batman, Spiderman, etc. We are now in the lego phase at our home. Sure they are all over the house and every time I sweep the floor I am yelling for one of the boys to rescue the legos in the pile before I throw them away, but REALLY! They are so fun. We went to the Lego store with Grandma and Grandpa over the weekend. Poor Ben. I obviously don't buy him a lot of toys because he was so confused that they wanted to buy him something. He kept saying what he wanted for Christmas. He walked out of there with eyes as big as saucers holding his bag of lego treasures. He plays with them all day. Who needs sunshine, right?!

Anyways, I threw him a last minute lego themed party before we left for Mexico. I made these cupcakes in about 20 minutes. (the toppers that is). I used a kit kat mold since the lego candy molds were only available online. I didn't have time for that since I threw the party together in an afternoon. This worked though! I used red, yellow, and green Wilton candy melts. Then, after they were set, I piped matching color dots on with royal icing. So simple and quick. And I didn't have to buy anything. Wa-la! Instant Legos!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Stiff Whipped Cream Frosting...

...that doesn't flop!!?? Oh, yeah baby! This stuff actually holds its shape and form, pipes beautifully, and tastes AMAZING!!! I love it paired with strawberry cupcakes. Or, you can eat it straight out of the bowl with your finger a spoon. My girlfriend Julie has been raving about this frosting recipe for like a year and about two months ago, I tried it. Since then, I have probably made it about 15 times. (I am not kidding) That is a lot of heavy whipping cream. Don't worry, I am not eating it all. I would be dead or 500 pounds if I was! Actually, this frosting is low sugar in comparison to most. Here is the recipe!

Whipped Cream Frosting
Source: Julie Fletcher found from allrecipes

1 block 8 oz. cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar- NOT powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. almond extract
2 cups heavy whipping cream

In your mixing bowl, with the whisk attachment, whip together the cream cheese and the sugar until nice and soft. Add flavorings and slowly poor in whipping cream. Whip for a few minutes until nice and stiff. Make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl a few times while mixing.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

My first fondant covered cake!

This was my final project for Cake Decorating III. Thought I would share with you! Those are gum paste cala lilies on top. I sure am going to miss the girls from that class. We have gotten to know each other pretty well after months of cake crafting together. And then there is Helen; our sweet, world, renowned little old lady teacher. She says things to us like, "Mommy fixy" when she makes a mistake. Love her!

On another note...this weekend we have company in town. My parents and some friends of mine from San Antonio. I actually lived with them for the year before I left on my mission. Haven't seen them since then and now their little baby is a teen-age girl. Where the heck did ten years go. I miss San Antonio. What a fun city. As everyone know, Texans have an uncanny pride for their state. I don't differ. Yee Haw for Texas!! We are going to have a blast this weekend. Today is the aquarium with the kids and then pick up a sitter and head to Elitch Gardens! Whoa Baby!

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