Thursday, September 27, 2012

Peanut Butter Cookie Chocolate Cupcakes

If you've skimmed the recipes here, you have probably noticed KWeage and I pretty much adore anything peanut butter and chocolate.  While browsing Annie's Eats, my go to for cupcake inspiration, I saw this recipe again.  My co-residents this month had a heads up about my baking from a med school classmate.  As there are two days left of this rotation, I took advantage of my extra day off to spend a little extra time in the kitchen.

Peanut Butter Cookie Chocolate Cupcakes (from Annie's Eats)
Makes 28 cupcakes

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Its a boy!

This weekend a friend, AT, had a baby shower, and unfortunately because of a conference, I was unable to attend. But I was able to bake cupcakes and send them instead :) 

I talked to AT's husband ST, and he said that she really loved buttercream frosting, so I set out to find a cupcake with a great buttercream frosting.

I realized that most of the cupcakes I make a pretty girly, and the baby is a boy, so I went to my favorite food blogs for inspiration. I ended up finding a Lemon Blueberry cupcake recipe and thought it would be perfect. 

Lemon Blueberry Cupcakes. (inspiration from annie's eats, recipe adapted from
Makes 24 cupcakes.

Lemon Cake:

1 box of yellow cake mix (or lemon if you have it)
4 eggs
2/3 cup of oil
1 cup of milk
1 small package of instant pudding (I used vanilla, I would recommend getting lemon if you can)
1/2 cup greek yogurt (or sour cream)
2 teaspoons lemon extract (don't use as much if you used lemon cake mix or pudding)
zest of 1 lemon
1 small package of blueberries

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, line pans with cupcake liners and spray with non-stick spray.
Distribute the blueberries evenly between the cupcake liners.
In a large bowl, whisk eggs, oil, milk, yogurt, and extract together.
Add cake mix and pudding mix, stir until combined.
Pour mix over the blueberries (I usually use a 1/4c measuring cup to fill them.
Bake for 17-22 minutes or until inserted toothpick comes out clean.
(I ran into a small problem of the cupcakes collapsing a bit, so make sure they are really done... the toothpick did come out clean, but they were only in for 17 minutes...)

Lemon Buttercream Frosting:

3 cups of powdered sugar (plus a bit extra to get the consistency right)
1 stick of butter (cold)
1+ teaspoon of lemon extract
juice from 1/4 lemon
a dash of half and half
Food coloring

Using a stand mixer and the whisk attachement, beat the butter until it is smooth. Add in the powdered sugar slowly so it has a chance to blend well.
Add the extract and juice.
Taste and add more extract if needed.
Add food coloring to desired color
Add either half and half or powdered sugar to get it to the right consistency.
Pipe using 1M tip.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Happy Birthday, Kristi

This cake was sooooo worth the wait!  I think its been on my radar for two years, but I've never had the right reason to make it (after eating it, I'll make it again for no reason at all).  But Kristi's birthday was just the reason I've been waiting for.  And it didn't take much convincing at all to have her pick a dark chocolate cake with peanut butter frosting and chocolate ganache poured on the top.

She loved the chocolate to peanut butter ratio, I could have used a little more peanut butter and a little less chocolate.  But its all personal preference, I suppose.  I've altered the frosting recipe just a bit as I found there wasn't quite enough to prevent crumbs from peaking through.  As the original recipe suggested, I popped the cakes in the freezer for a bit before frosting as they are quite moist.

Don't make the same mistake I did... bake this up for your next party, not two years from now!
Chocolate Peanut Butter Celebration Cake (from Smitten Kitchen)
Serves at least 16

Cake Batter
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup Hershey's Special Dark cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup sour cream or greek yogurt
1 1/2 cups water
2 tablespoons white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix together dry ingredients, flour through salt.
Combine oil through vinegar in a mixing bowl.
Add beaten eggs.
Gently fold dry mixture into wet.
Divide evenly into 3 greased and floured 8" cake pans.
Bake for 30 minutes.
Cool on wire rack and then freeze until ready to frost.

10 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
4 cups powdered sugar

Beat cream cheese, butter, and peanut butter together with electric mixer.
Add powdered sugar one cup at a time.
Refrigerate until ready to use.

To assemble, frost each layer of cake and refrigerate.

Chocolate Ganache Topping
3 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
6 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup smooth peanut butter
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 cup half-and-half

Melt chocolate and peanut butter in a double boiler.  Stir occasionally.
Once melted, mix in corn syrup.
Take off heat and whisk in half and half.
Let cool briefly.  Pour on top of frosted cake while still warm and let drip over edges.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Happy Birthday to Me :)

My birthday was this past Wednesday, so I did what most people do, and I made cupcakes :) 
EWeage and I thought we should try something we've never done before, and given that I love chocolate, and coconut, and almonds, these seemed like a great choice. Everyone loved them! (Except for those crazy people who don't like coconut... :-P ) 

We had some difficulties with lighting and getting a good picture of these cupcakes... hence the picture with my hands because it had the best lighting!

Almond Joy Cupcakes. (from
Chocolate Cake:
1 box Devil's Food Cake Mix
4 eggs
2/3 cup oil
1 small pkg. chocolate instant pudding
1 cup milk
1/2 cup sour cream (or greek yogurt)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Coconut Topping:
1/4 cup butter, softened
8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups shredded coconut
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3-4 cups powdered sugar
2 cups chocolate Melts
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line pans with cupcake liners.
Spray liners with non-stick spray.
 In a large bowl, gently whisk eggs, oil, milk, sour cream and vanilla extract together
Add cake mix and pudding mix, stir until combined.
Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full and bake for 15-20 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Beat butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add shredded coconut and vanilla, mix again. Slowly add powdered sugar until you reach your desired consistency.
Spread topping onto cooled cupcakes.
Place chocolate melts in a microwave-safe bowl and melt and stir until smooth.
Dip cupcakes into chocolate and then place an almond on top.