Category Archives: cupcakes

Lemon Cupcakes with Lemon Curd and Coconut Butter Cream Icing

Frances’s favorite dessert flavor is coconut and lemon. This was the flavor of her wedding cake so it was only natural to make cupcakes in the same flavor to mark the birth of her new baby. These are very rich. The icing and cake are super sweet, but the very tart curd really balances out the full package. Eat these with a fork!

Lemon Cupcakes with Lemon Curd and Coconut Butter Cream Icing

Lemon Cake:
2 3/4 cups flour
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
¾ teaspoon baking soda
¾ teaspoon salt
2 cups sugar
½ cup butter flavored shortening
3 eggs
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon lemon extract
juice and zest of 1 lemon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin tins with cupcake liners.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine all of the dry ingredients and stir to combine. Add the shortening, eggs, milk and extracts and turn the mixer on low. Once the flour is combined turn the mixer on high and beat for at least 5 minutes so that the batter gets fluffy. Add the lemon juice and zest and stir to combine

Pour the batter into the cupcake liners and bake for at least 30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Cool the cake in the pan for 5 minutes then remove them to a wire rack and cool completely.

Lemon Curd Filling:
4 egg yolks
1 egg
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 lemons, juiced and zested
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 stick butter

Beat the eggs and sugar in a medium size metal bowl until the mixture gets thicker and a lighter lemon color.

Fill a small saucepan one third of the way full with water. Place on medium high heat and wait till the water starts to bubble and steam rises.

Add the rest of the ingredients, except the butter, to the egg mixture and stir. Place the metal bowl over the hot water and keep whisking until the mixture thickens, about 10 minutes.

Remove the curd from the heat and slowly mix in the butter. Transfer the curd to a plastic container and press the top with plastic wrap. Cool in the refrigerator until needed.

Coconut Cream Icing:
3/4 cup egg whites
1 cup sugar
4 sticks butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons coconut extract
2 tablespoons coconut cream
¼ teaspoon salt
1 7 oz package of organic coconut flakes
2 tablespoons light rum
.1oz vile of gold pearl dust

Combine the egg whites and sugar in a metal bowl. Beat with a balloon whisk to combine. Place the bowl over a pot filled with water and heat on medium heat. Keep beating the eggs to dissolve the sugar and the mixture will start to thicken and turn white. When the grit is gone from the eggs, about 20 minutes later, transfer the egg whites to a stand mixer and beat on high to form soft peaks.

Fold the room temperature butter into the eggs and continue to beat on high. Add the salt, extracts and coconut cream and beat one last time to combine. Refrigerate the icing mixture at least 30 minutes so that it starts to harden but doesn’t fully set.

Thanksgiving Mini Desserts

By the time I get to dessert at Thanksgiving I’m always stuffed. I want to try everything but it seems impossible since there isn’t any room in my tummy. This year I got smart and made everything as miniature bite-size desserts. Each of these deserts uses the same mini muffin tin for a consistent size. We had a sea of mini pastries, simply delicious.

Mini Stout Gingerbread 
Cupcakes

Gingerbead:
1 cup Young’s Double Chocolate Stout
1 cup dark molasses (not blackstrap)

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger

2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

3 large eggs

3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

3/4 cup vegetable oil


Boil the beer and molasses in a large pot. Then remove it from the heat and add in the baking soda. Whip the mixture and let it sit to cool to room temperature.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix together the eggs, sugar and oil. Then add the flour, baking powder and the rest of the spices. Pour in the beer mixture and mix to combine.

Fill cupcake liners to half way and bake in the middle of the oven for 30 minutes. Cool the cupcakes on racks. Make these cupcakes one day in advance and let them sit overnight at room temperature before frosting. The cake gets better after a day.

Caramel Butter Cream Icing:
1 cup sugar
½ cup heavy cream
2 1/2 sticks butter
3 large egg whites
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla Extract

Heat the cup of sugar on medium high heat in a heavy bottom pan. When the edge starts to turn brown and bubble, swirl the pan and keep heating to make an even caramel. The sugar will met totally and caramelize, take the sugar off of the heat and swirl the pan to make sure that all crystals dissolve and that the sugar doesn’t get too dark or burn.

Pour the cup of cream into the sugar and let it continue to cook. After 10 minutes, stir to pull the sugar off of the bottom of the pan and continue to cook so that the mixture thickens. Take it off the heat and set it aside to cool.

Beat the butter and margarine together on high, till fluffy, with an electric mixer, set aside.

In a heat proof metal bowl, over simmering water, like a double boiler, wisk the egg whites and remaining sugar. The sugar crystals will dissolve and the mixture will get thick and turn white. Be careful not to cook the eggs.

Wisk the vanilla into the egg whites using an electric mixer. The egg whites will thicken and form soft peaks. Add the egg whites and the caramel to the butter mixture. Beat on high until well combined and fluffy.

Using a star tip and a zip lock bag, pipe the icing onto the top of the cupcakes. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Mini Carrot Cupcakes

Carrot Cake:
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
½ cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups grated carrots (4 carrots)
1 cup flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Beat the eggs in a large metal bowl. Add the sugar, oil and vanilla. Fold in the carrots. Add the rest of the dry ingredients and whisk to form a smooth batter. Fill cupcake liners to half way and bake in the middle of the oven for 30 minutes. Cool the cupcakes on racks to room temperature before frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting:
1 8oz package of cream cheese, at room temperature
1 stick butter, at room temperature
1 package of powdered sugar (1 lb)
2 teaspoons vanilla

Beat the cream cheese and butter on high in an electric mixer until fluffy and combined. Slowly add the powdered sugar, stirring on low speed after each addition. Add the vanilla extract and beat it on high again for about 3 minutes till fluffy. Using a plain tip and a zip lock bag, ice the cupcakes. Store the finished cakes in the refrigerator before serving.

Mini Poached Ginger Pear and Chocolate Tarts

Crust:
1 ½ cups flour
1 stick of butter, slightly cooler than room temperature
1 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons sugar
¼ cup water

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large metal bowl, mix all ingredients, except the water with a fork or pastry cutter. The goal is to incorporate the butter until it is the texture of course meal. Slowly sprinkle in the water and quickly mix. Making sure not to put in too much water, briefly kneed the pastry so that it forms a cohesive ball. Pull out about 1 tablespoon of dough and flatten into a round, place it into a mini-muffin pan to form a miniature pie shell. Fill your pans and cook in the oven for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove to a wire rack and cool to room temperature.

Poached Pear:
½ cup rose wine
1 cup sugar
¼ piece of fresh ginger, pealed
½ cinnamon stick
3 cloves
water
1 ripe pear, pealed, seeded and cut in half
caramelized ginger

In a medium heavy pot, mix the wine and sugar and a little water to dissolve. Add the spices and pear. Add enough water to cover the pear, place a small plate over the pear to keep it submerged. Cook the mixture on medium heat for 30 minutes to cook the pear until tender. Cool to room temperature. Drain the pear on a paper towel. Cut the pear and ginger into small chunks.

Ganache:
1 cup dark chocolate chips or chunks
1/2 heavy cream

Place a small metal bowl over a small pan of water on medium heat. Heat the chocolate and cream until the chocolate melts. Remove the chocolate from the heat. Whisk, starting in the center of the bowl till it forms a silky ganache.

Fill the tart shells with a spoon full of the chocolate ganache. Place one chunk of pear and ginger in each tart. Serve at room temperature.

Mini Pumpkin Pie

Crust:
3 cups flour
2 sticks of butter, slightly cooler than room temperature
2 teaspoon salt
5 teaspoons sugar
1/2 cup water

In a large metal bowl, mix all ingredients, except the water with a fork or pastry cutter. The goal is to incorporate the butter until it is the texture of course meal. Slowly sprinkle in the water and quickly mix. Making sure not to put in too much water, briefly kneed the pastry so that it forms a cohesive ball. Pull out about 1 tablespoon of dough and flatten into a round, place it into a mini-muffin pan to form a miniature pie shell.

Pumpkin filling:
1 15oz can of pumpkin puree
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 stick butter, at room temperature
2 eggs
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon ginger
½ teaspoon salt
1 5 oz can evaporated milk
¼ cup sugar

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix all of the ingredients in a stand mixer until light and fluffy. Fill the mini pie shells 2/3 of the way full and bake in the oven for 30 minutes, until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack and serve at room temperature.

Mini Pecan Pie

Crust:
1/2 cups flour
1 sticks of butter, slightly cooler than room temperature
1 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons sugar
1/4 cup water

In a large metal bowl, mix all ingredients, except the water with a fork or pastry cutter. The goal is to incorporate the butter until it is the texture of course meal. Slowly sprinkle in the water and quickly mix. Making sure not to put in too much water, briefly kneed the pastry so that it forms a cohesive ball. Pull out about 1 tablespoon of dough and flatten into a round, place it into a mini-muffin pan to form a miniature pie shell.

Pecan Filling:
1/2 stick butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup Lyle’s Golden Syrup
2 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
¼ teaspoon salt
8 oz chopped pecans

Pre-heat the over to 350 degrees. Add all of the ingredients, except the pecans to bowl and beat with a whisk until combined. Fill the tart shells with the chopped pecans. Cover with a spoonful of the sugar minter. Bake for 30 minutes until the pies are golden brown and crisp. Cool on a wire rack and serve at room temperature.

Birthday Wishes

This weekend was Sean’s birthday. He requested peanut butter and chocolate cupcakes. I knew I had the prefect plan. After a killer BBQ on his and Sabrina’s roof, these where a the perfect sweet ending.

Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes:

Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes
1-1/2 c unbleached white flour
1/2 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1 t baking soda
1/2 t salt
1 c sugar
1/2 c vegetable oil
1 c brewed coffee
2 t pure vanilla extract
2 T vinegar

1. Preheat the oven to 375-degrees.

2. Mix together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt and sugar into a large bowl.

3. In a 2-cup measuring cup, measure and mix the oil, water (or coffee), and vanilla. Slowly and gently pour the liquid ingredients into the bowl and mix the batter with a whisk.

4. When the batter is smooth, add the vinegar and stir quickly. There will be pale swirls (and some bubbling) in the batter where the baking soda and vinegar are reacting. Stir just until the vinegar is evenly distributed throughout the batter (the color becomes more consistent throughout).

5. Pour batter into a lined muffin tin and bake for 25 minutes–testing with a toothpick. Remove to a cooling rack.

Peanut Butter Mousse
1/2 stick butter, room temperature
1 cups creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup heavy cream
pinch of salt

In a large stand mixer, cream the butter until it is light and fluffy. Ass the peanut butter and beat until incorporated. Stir in the powdered sugar and salt and continue beating. Add the cream and whip the mixture until its fluffy.

Chocolate Butter Cream Icing
1 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
¼ cup heavy cream
½ cup butter, room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla

In a double boiler, heat the chocolate and cream. Stirring with a whisk to melt. Once the chocolate is all melted and there are no visible bits of chocolate. Place to top pan in a bowl of ice water. Using a rubber spatula, stir the chocolate to cool.

In a stand mixer, cream the butter. Once the butter is fluffy, add the sugar and vanilla and beat until incorporated.

Add the cooled chocolate to the creamed butter and stir until fluffy. This should take at least 5 minutes. If the mixture is too loose, transfer into a large plastic bag and refrigerate for 30 minutes before frosting.

To assemble to cupcakes, cut a cone out of the top of the cakes using a paring knife. Remove the piece and cut off most of the point of the cone so that you just have a thin cap. Using the knife, dig out extra cake from the cake to create a larger pocket. Set all cake aside for a different use. Using a small spoon, fill the cake with the peanut butter and replace the cap on top of the filling. Frost the cakes and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

For love or chocolate

I started a new job for the month of January. To win over my co-workers I quickly whipped this up. It worked like a charm. This will melt anyone’s heart.

Raspberry Filled Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes:

Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes
1-1/2 c unbleached white flour
1/2 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1 t baking soda
1/2 t salt
1 c sugar
1/2 c vegetable oil
1 c brewed coffee
2 t pure vanilla extract
2 T vinegar

1. Preheat the oven to 375-degrees.

2. Mix together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt and sugar into a large bowl.

3. In a 2-cup measuring cup, measure and mix the oil, water (or coffee), and vanilla. Slowly and gently pour the liquid ingredients into the bowl and mix the batter with a whisk.

4. When the batter is smooth, add the vinegar and stir quickly. There will be pale swirls (and some bubbling) in the batter where the baking soda and vinegar are reacting. Stir just until the vinegar is evenly distributed throughout the batter (the color becomes more consistent throughout).

5. Pour batter into a lined muffin tin and bake for 25 minutes–testing with a toothpick. Remove to a cooling rack and frost.

Vegan Vanilla Icing
1 c shorting (transfat free)
3 c powdered sugar
½ T vanilla extract
1/8 c soymilk
4 drops of food coloring

1. Beat all ingredients on low, then high with an electric mixer, until fluffy.

Raspberry Filling
1 frozen bag of raspberries
1 cup of sugar
2 T corn starch
Water

1. Heat raspberries and sugar in a pot on the stove at medium high heat until bubbling.
2. Mix corn starch with just enough water to make a lump free slurry.
3. Add corn starch mixture to raspberries and stir, still on the heat, till the mixture is thick and clear and glossy.

Cupcake Assembly:
1. After cupcakes and raspberries are cooled to room temperature, you can start assembling.

2. Cut a cone shape out of the top of each cupcake. Cut the bottom part off of the cone of the cap, eat or discard.

3. Fill the cupcake with a spoon full of filling, place cap back onto to seal in the filling. This doesn’t have to be perfect.

4. Pipe the icing onto each cupcake

5. Decorate as you like.

Cupcakes A Go Go

November was super busy and I enjoyed a lovely 10 days in Mexico. It’s finals season so that has contributed to my cooking delinquency. However, the final project in my Social Entrepreneurship class is pitching my organic bakery concept, Patisserie Carbon. So with that in mind, I’ve been making cupcakes, like crazy.

I got these cute little mini muffin tins so that I can feed my whole class on my batch of cupcakes and people can taste both flavors without feeling guilty. I made vegan chocolate cupcakes, with a raspberry jam filling and a fluffy vanilla icing. I also made gingerbread cupcakes with a caramel butter cream icing. Of course everything is made with organic ingredients.

For the chocolate cake I used an old recipe from war times. It amazing me how good this tastes for being vegan, really.

Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes
1-1/2 c unbleached white flour
1/2 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1 t baking soda
1/2 t salt
1 c sugar
1/2 c vegetable oil
1 c brewed coffee
2 t pure vanilla extract
2 T vinegar

1. Preheat the oven to 375-degrees.

2. Mix together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt and sugar into a large bowl.

3. In a 2-cup measuring cup, measure and mix the oil, water (or coffee), and vanilla. Slowly and gently pour the liquid ingredients into the bowl and mix the batter with a whisk.

4. When the batter is smooth, add the vinegar and stir quickly. There will be pale swirls (and some bubbling) in the batter where the baking soda and vinegar are reacting. Stir just until the vinegar is evenly distributed throughout the batter (the color becomes more consistent throughout).

5. Pour batter into a lined muffin tin and bake for 25 minutes–testing with a toothpick. Remove to a cooling rack and frost.

Vegan Vanilla Icing

2 c shorting (transfat free)
6 c powdered sugar
1 T vanilla extract
¼ c soymilk

Beat all ingredients on low, then high with an electric mixer, until fluffy.

Gingerbread Cupcakes (Courtesy of Bobby Flay and The Food Network)
1 3/4 c all-purpose flour 

1 t baking powder 

3/4 t baking soda 

1/4 t salt 

1 T ground ginger 

2 t ground cinnamon 

1/4 t ground cloves 

1/2 stick unsalted butter, melted 

3/4 c brown sugar 

2 large eggs 

6 T black strap molasses 

3/4 c water

1. Pre-heat the over to 3:50 degrees.

2. Mix all the dry ingredients and set aside.

3. In an electric mixer, bead the butter, brown sugar, eggs and molasses will well blended.

4. Gradually add the dry ingredients and water, alternating to form a thick batter.

5. Pour the batter into muffin tins with paper liners and bake for at least 20 minutes, checking doneness with a toothpick.

6. Cool on a wire rack and frost.

Caramel Butter Cream Icing
1 c sugar
½ c heavy cream
2 sticks butter
2.5 oz margarine
3 large egg whites
1-1/2 c sugar
1 T vanilla Extract

1. Heat the cup of sugar on medium high heat in a heavy bottom pan. The sugar will met and caramelize, take the sugar off of the heat and swirl the pan to make sure that all crystals dissolve and that the sugar doesn’t get too dark or burn.

2. Pour the cup of cream into the sugar and let it continue to cook. After 10 minutes, stir to pull the sugar off of the bottom of the pan and continue to cook so that the mixture thickens. Take it off the heat and set it aside to cool.

3. Beat the butter and margarine together on high, till fluffy, with an electric mixer, set aside.

4. In a heat proof metal bowl, over simmer water, like a double boiler, wish the egg whites and remaining sugar. The sugar crystals will dissolve and the mixture will get thing and turn white. Be careful not to cook the eggs.

5. Wisk the vanilla into the egg whites.

6. Add the egg whites and the caramel to the butter mixture. Beat on high until well combined and fluffy.

7. Put the mixture into the refrigerator to cool. Stir occasionally until it is the right consistency for piping.