Showing posts with label cupcake. Show all posts
Showing posts with label cupcake. Show all posts

Monday, June 20, 2016

Celebration Cupcakes

I'm constantly on the hunt for the perfect chocolate cupcake recipe. I think this one comes pretty close to perfect! The cake is soft and fluffy. The flavor is rich, with the perfect combination of chocolate and coffee. They bake up round and don't fall when cooling. I think I've found my new favorite chocolate cake!

I've called them celebration cupcakes simply because they make me so happy! The fluffy, white marshmallow frosting paired with the shiny chocolate drizzle and colorful sprinkles make this cupcake the perfect one to bring to any special event. Even though they look like they took all day long, each component of the cupcakes comes together really fast! 

I made the cupcakes while my lunch was heating up in the microwave. The frosting requires a bit of attention to heat the eggs, but then you toss it in the stand mixer and walk away. The chocolate glaze is as simple and melt, mix and drizzle.  Trust me, you can make these treats in under two hours. If you have helpers, you can probably knock them out in an hour!

I don't really have anything special to celebrate right now, so I'm sending these cupcakes to work with the boyfriend! Otherwise, I'll eat the entire batch. Maybe in a few weeks we'll have something to celebrate in the Wilde household. Until then, I'll try to eat healthy this summer and keep my cupcake consumption down to one per day!

One year ago: Celebration Sprinkle Cake
Two years ago: Neapolitan Cake
Three years ago: Momofuku Celebration Cake
Four years ago: PB&J Mallomars
Five years ago: Chocolate Cupcakes with Strawberry Buttercream

Monday, June 22, 2015

J@H - Homemade Snoballs

I'm a few challenges behind on my Junk at Home 2015 challenge, due to travel and work, so I thought I should get back to it with a bang! This week I was scheduled to make my own version of Hostess coconut snowballs and I decided to make it all from scratch.

Even though I had to made four different things for this recipe, it all came together pretty quickly. Aside from the shredded coconut, you probably already have all of the ingredients in your pantry. Well, as long as you're a baker, if you don't bake a lot you may need to head to the grocery story for a few things (unsweetened chocolate, marshmallow creme, Greek yogurt).

While you can get Snoballs at the store once again, you should definitely try making them at home. It's so much fun! Look at these adorable little purple puffs! The colored coconut is so easy to make. Simply place a bag of sweetened, shredded coconut into a large zip top bag. Add a drop of gel food coloring and squish it around until the coconut is evenly colored. Alternatively, you can add the coconut and food coloring to a food processor and pulse until the color is even and the coconut is slightly smaller.

The big question - do they taste like the original? With the combination of marshmallow, coconut and chocolate, there is no way for these to taste like anything else! This was definitely a winner in my book.

Two Years Ago: Strawberry Bacon Pizza
Three Years Ago: Pesto-Yogurt Chicken
Four Years Ago: Baked Pasta Casserole

Thursday, August 14, 2014

CTB 2014 - Marshmallow Madness!

I hate to admit this, but I haven't sat by a campfire in 4 years. The last time I sat with friends and toasted marshmallows was the summer of 2010. Weeks away from picking up once again and moving from Boulder, Colorado to New Haven, Connecticut, I just spent the day on the reservoir with my fitness family.

With the sun setting over the Rocky mountains, we settled into foldout chairs with fuzzy blankets and bags of marshmallows, graham crackers and Hershey bars. I learned that the best way to enjoy a s'more is to stuff a Milk Dud into the center of a marshmallow before toasting it. Chocolate, caramel and marshmallow. So amazing.

Since moving from Boulder to the East coast, I haven't found myself in the presence of a campfire. You aren't really allowed to start fires in an apartment building. In order to fully enjoy this summer, I wanted to recreate a summertime treat in my kitchen. No fire required.

This s'mores cupcakes was the perfect way to reminisce, without setting fire to my kitchen. Though I'm not going to lie, there totally was a series of small fires when I made these beauties. Did you know that cupcake liners are flammable? When toasting the marshmallow frosting, be careful not to light the actual cupcake on fire!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

OXO Good Cupcake - Pumpkin & Caramel

First - remember to enter my Fall picnic giveaway!  Last day to enter!!!

With the official start of Fall this past Sunday, I'm ready to break out the apples, pumpkins and fennel.  While at the grocery store this week I decided to stock up on canned pumpkin for the inevitable pumpkin recipes that I want to make.  And believe me, I've got a list of sweets and savories that I want to whip up before everyone gets fed up with pumpkin.  My first pumpkin-filled treat is for the OXO Cookies for Kids' Cancer - Bake a Difference campaign!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Peanut Butter and Banana Cupcakes

It's been four days since BF and I hiked in and out of the Grand Canyon and my calves are still killing me!  I guess that's what happens when you hike a progressively steeper seven miles.  I'm hoping that our crazy hike will help with training us for our upcoming Spartan race.

To help recuperate some of the calories I burned on our hike, I made some cupcakes.  Then proceeded to eat a whole bunch of them.  Okay, three.  Then I sent them to work with BF.  I knew I couldn't be left alone with the remaining nine cupcakes.  The combination of banana and peanut butter chips in these cupcakes reminded me of my favorite breakfast (waffle sandwich!).  You could actually leave off the frosting and have these for breakfast.  Because a cupcake without frosting is a muffin, right?  Totally healthy.

But really, after climbing out of the Grand Canyon I feel like I deserved a few unhealthy treats.  And so do you!  Make yourself some cupcakes, or "healthy" muffins.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Brownie Cupcake Sundaes

We are only days away from Christmas.  It's been really easy to tell how many days are left before the holiday weekend begins because of the following.  Each day this week...

My morning train has been emptier and emptier.  Friday morning promises to give me a three-seater all to myself!

There have been fewer and fewer people in the halls at work.  My company is closed next week for our winter shutdown and some people choose to extend this vacation by taking a few days this week as well.  I'm pretty sure there will be 10% of the people in the building and maybe 1% of them will be doing actual work.

My evening return to the city each night has become more packed with families.  They are all dressed up in their winter best, heading to the city to see the Rockefeller tree, shop at Macy's and view the holiday windows.  Oh yeah, and be loud and noisy on the train.  Shhhhh...

T minus five days - Boyfriend has fled the cold weather to visit his parents in Florida.  This is a good thing.  While we will be spending Christmas apart (I'll be heading to Buffalo this to visit my own parents), I get to use this time to shop and wrap for the guy. 

I finished my holiday shopping last night after work.  My antibiotics have helped me kick the bronchitis that took up residence in my chest.  And Perry's Ice Cream sent me two containers of holiday flavors.  It's time to celebrate!

Actually, the container of ice cream pictured is not the original one that they sent me.  I accidentally ate all of that one.  All by myself.  Don't worry, it took me almost two weeks to eat the whole container.  BF and I had to make our way to the New Jersey Wegmans and buy the last container of peppermint ice cream.

Before I ate all of the ice cream, I had plans to make these little brownie cupcakes.  These dessert treats are really simple and perfect for a complicated holiday dinner.  Make some brownie cupcakes, top them with your favorite mint/peppermint ice cream and add a dallop of whipped topping.  Hello delicious.

Happy Holidays everyone!  I hope that you get to spend some time with the ones you love.

Many thanks to Perry's Ice cream for helping it feel like home, all these miles away from Buffalo.  I've also found that if people know about Perry's Ice cream, they love it.  If you can find it, give it a try!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Chai Cupcakes with Chai Cream Cheese Frosting

When you collect your race packet and written in large red letters is the following "There is a real possibility that YOU MAY DIE or be catastrophically injured," you may be wondering what you got yourself into.  I was staring at these exact words this Saturday when boyfriend and I got ready to run our very first Spartan Race. 

Registering for the Spartan Race was not my idea.  Four months ago, Boyfriend found the race through a Living Social deal and signed us both up.  I went to the website and was presented with a video of fit looking people crawling under barbed wire, scaling ten foot walls, leaping over fire and jumping into giant pits of mud.  On top of all of this, the runners were confronted with armed gladiators in the last 100 feet.  What did I get myself into?

Saturday morning we drove through rainstorms and wound up at the Mountain Creek Ski Resort, in beautiful and sundrenched Northwestern New Jersey.  We donned our race numbers and lined up at the starting gate.  I jumped up and down, arooing at boyfriend.  He stood there and told me I was acting crazy and to stop it.

The siren blared and we were off and running!  For the first 500 feet.  Then we were faced with a very daunting, very steep, very tall hill.  A black diamond ski slope to be exact.  The 250 racers in our heat quickly turned from a group of excited, cheering athletes, to a mass of red-faced, short-of-breath ninnies.  What am I saying, I was right there with them.  This hill just kept on going up, it took me 2/3 of the way up to control my breathing and get into a good place.

After the first two miles, boyfriend and I found our pace.  He pushed me to keep going up those hills and I kept him running through the woods.  We swam through a lake, climbed over wall, flipped huge tractor tires but at mile 7, I was on my own.  Boyfriend was struck down by a serious migraine and I had to finish the last four miles on my own.

Luckily there was lots of fun to be had in the last four miles, including a 200-foot rock scramble to the top of the last hill, 9 & 10-foot walls to climb, monkey bars, mud slides, A-frames and...  a torrential thunderstorm.  With only two miles to go, the heavens opened up and the racers and I were sprinting to the finish line through sheets of rain, it was way dramatic.  Good thing I didn't know about the tornado warning.

I crossed the finish line, accepted my fancy medal and located my sad boyfriend.  Now I'm nursing my wounds and walking very slowly down the stairs.  And I'm eating cupcakes.  Because I ran eleven miles on Saturday and totally deserve them.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Oreo Cupcakes

Did you know that New Jersey is actually quite hilly?  Up until a few weeks ago, I didn't realize this either.  I came to this revelation after boyfriend and I decided to take a ride to the zoo on our new bikes.

This was a few weeks ago, just after boyfriend and I had assembled our brand new bikes.  Personally, I like to just go out and ride my bike.  Boyfriend is more of a destination rider.  He likes to have a goal, rather than an open-ended ride.  It helps him strive to get there faster, since he knows there is an end in sight.  It was a hot and sunny Sunday afternoon and boyfriend suggested we head to the zoo for an afternoon of animal watching and llama petting.

The ride looked totally feasable, just over five miles, pretty direct route and wide sidewalks, this would be a breeze.  Too bad we didn't plan properly for the ride we were about to take.  First, the temperature quickly topped ninety-five degrees over the course of our ride.  Next, to make the extreme heat even worse, we managed to leave our water bottles on the counter. 

Things only got worse as we continued biking away.  With the mercury in the thermometer bursting out the top, our final right turn brought us onto a freshly black-topped road.  Heat was emanating off of the dark road, you could see waves in the air.  And there was one last bit of torture for the ride...

That's right, a big, scary hill.  I just about died.  We kept thinking that the hill would eventually come to an end.  Or that we would find a convenience store where we could buy some water.  Or that someone would be watering their lawn and we could lay down in the sprinklers.  Sadly, the hill went on and on. 

Yet when we made it to the top (not without stopping to walk our bikes for a good portion!) we were proud to make it to the top and happy to see a McDonalds.  These days we are sure to bring lots of water with us when we hit the road and to check a topographical map before we leave home!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Cinnamon Roll Cupcakes

Are you like me?  Can you have breakfast for any meal of the day?  Omelets for dinner.  Bagels for lunch.  Pancakes for a late night snack.  Breakfast, the best meal of the day.  Well, almost.  I don't really like eggs for breakfast.  Eggs - fried, scrambled or over-easy - are dinner fare.

I decided that this week, rather than making pancakes for dinner, I would make a true breakfast for dessert.  Cinnamon roll cupcakes!

A simple vanilla cake, with layers of cinnamon-brown sugar, topped with a layer of cream cheese frosting.  These little treats tasted just like the breakfast buns I can't keep my hands off.  Whenever I make a batch (or can if I'm in a hurry and have a big craving) of cinnamon rolls, I always have at least two.  I know they are about a million calories each, I can't help myself.

These cupcakes were just what I wanted and I was totally satisfied with just one.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Sponge Candy Cupcakes

Boyfriend and I got to have a little fun in the city this Tuesday.

First, I got to buy this new cookbook...

Then, I got to see this lady give a nice powerpoint presentation...

And I got to have a little talk with her!  Ree said boyfriend was a good sport for coming along.

On a side note... can you see my new braces???
Finally, boyfriend and I went and got noodles and pork buns for dinner.  It was an excellent day.

It was only made even better because these little beauties were waiting for me at home.

These cupcakes were actually an idea that came from my mom!  There is a small bakery back home (Hello Cupcake Orchard!) that makes a sponge candy cupcake on a limited basis.  The only thing that would have made mine just as delicious as theirs?  Original Watson's sponge candy crumbled on top.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Why Bother? 2012 - Fondant

Sorry for the delay in this challenge post, my kitchen was all in boxes from our move!  Believe me when I say, this was worth the wait!

Fondant is a strange concept.  When explaining what I was making to my friends and coworkers, they were all confused.  They asked "What is fondant?"  "Is it that stuff you peel off of wedding cakes?"  "Why would I want to eat solid frosting?"  Those who watch too much Food Network knew exactly what I was talking about, most were still confused until I brought in the goodies.

 I'm sure you've all had an experience with fondant.  Generally it covers wedding cakes and has a minimal amount of flavor.  Mostly sugary, sweet, stretchy and tough, most people I see at weddings have removed the outer shell of the cake to eat the insides.  So I wondered, does fondant have to taste so gross?

I looked through several of my cake cookbooks, searched the internet and read through old baking magazines until I found two different fondant recipes.  Traditional fondant, made with gelatin and glycerin as additives, is pegged as the trickier version to make.  Marshmallow fondant, made with marshmallows and powdered sugar, is billed as the "everymans" fondant recipe.  I found this to be exactly the opposite.

I started the day with making the marshmallow fondant.  The recipe calls for melting an entire bag of mini marshmallows in the microwave.  Once the mini mallows are melted you pour in almost a whole 2 pound bag of powdered sugar and start mixing.  Then comes the messy part, you have to knead all of the sugar into the marshmallows, by hand.  Even with repeated greasing of my hands with shortening, I was a big mess.  The fondant was sticking to everything it touched.  It took a good fifteen minutes to incorporate all of the sugar into the marshmallow and form a smooth fondant.  My arms were tired.

Once the marshmallow fondant was safely in a zip-top bag, I started with the traditional recipe.  The most difficult thing required of me was to microwave some gelatin in water.  The remainder of the hard work was complete by my stand mixer.  Everything mixed together much more easily that in the marshmallow recipe and required only two minutes of hands on kneading to finish.

You might be wondering if there was a difference in the outcome of the two recipes.  First, they both rolled and shaped easily.  Other than a modest color difference (the traditional fondant was pure white, while the marshmallow fondant was slightly off-white), I found no physical difference in the recipes.  The major difference came with the taste. 

The marshmallow fondant tasted just like a marshmallow, like vanilla.  I used this fondant to cover the cookies and they were a smash hit.  People were raving about how good the fondant was and how delicious the cookies were (Click here for the cookie recipe).  The traditional fondant had the same texture, it was just almond-flavored (because I added almond extract).  I enjoyed the fact that I could flavor the fondant with whatever extract or oil that I wanted.  Imagine chocolate cake, covered in mint fondant or red velver cake covered in cheesecake flavored fondant.  So many possibilities!

In the end, I think that I preferred the traditional fondant recipe for two reasons.  1. The ease of preparation.  This fondant came together so much quicker and cleaner than the marshmallow fondant.  2. The flavor.  Being able to add different flavors to the fondant open up a whole world of possibilites. 

I don't think that I will be buying prepared fondant in the future.  Comparing all three recipes, the store-bought stuff comes out as a definite loser. 

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Mini Reeses Cupcakes

If my blog were a person, it wouldn't be my friend anymore.  You might be asking why this is the case?  Well, I kinda forgot it's birthday.  And I'm not just talking a few days late here.  My blogs birthday was way back in July!  I feel like such a terrible blog momma, how can you forget your own blog birthday?  I'll tell you how...

July 6th I began my new job.  While my new job came with the perks of evenings and weekends off (something that I haven't had in almost eight years), it also came with lots of new information that I had to cram into my brain.

June 30th I moved in with boyfriend.  After seven years of living long distance and making it work that way, boyfriend and I decided to give a go of it and live together.  While things have been working out grandly, he takes up a whole bunch of my time, in a good way of course.  We go out and do things on my newly free weekends.  Also, while I cook two or three times as often as I did before, I've been going for old favorites of mine, rather than striking out with something new each night.

July 1st I bought my first monthly rail pass.  A monthly rail pass to where?  Why, to New York City.  This makes it extremely easy to just hop on the train and head into the city on these newly free weekends.  What happens when you go to the city on the weekend instead of spending time in the kitchen?  You wind up celebrating your blogs birthday three months late.

I'm sorry blog, I love you!  Happy birthday!  Have some cupcakes!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Chocolate cupcakes with Strawberry Buttercream

I am and oxymoron.  My job title is "synthetic organic chemist."  When I tell people this I get many, many looks of confusion.  As an explanation I tell them that I make chemicals synthetically that are naturally found in nature.  Are you confused yet?  Most people just walk away.

You can also call me a natural products chemist.  Is this any less of an oxymoron?  I'm not really sure.  As a graduate student and postdoctoral associate I have been making natural products for the past eight years.  Here is a step-by-step explanation of why a synthetic organic chemist does what they do...

1. Sea sponge (or plant or animal or dirt) is collected by isolation chemists

2. Sea sponge is extracted and lots of neat-o chemicals are found inside of the sea sponge

3. Neat-o chemicals are tested against many, many cell screens.  The biologists look for activity against human disease

4. Neat-o, disease-killing chemical is published and given a fancy name like Neatoside F

5. Synthetic organic chemists (like me!) decide it's a worthwhile target and try to make neatoside F

6. On Friday, June 17th, they succeed in making neatoside F and celebrate with cupcakes!

That's right, after months of hard work, I finished my target.  It's a big day in the life of a synthetic organic chemistry, the day you bring your molecule into the world.  You've watched it grow, seen it make bad choices and even seen it fall apart in the face of tough conditions.  The SOC continues to nurture their target until finally it comes shining into existence.  There is no prouder day in the life of a SOC, until that work finds it's way into a major publication, of course.  It's like a birth announcement.  Welcome to the world neatoside F!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Cheesecake brownies

I wanted to thank you all for reminding me of the great things that come along with living in a university town. Examples. Most university towns are home to some of the greatest ethnic eats! It must have something to do with the wide variety of backgrounds of the people living and working at the university. While walking down State street you will pass Ethiopian, Laotian, Greek, Italian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Brazilian, Afghanistani, Mexican and five ice cream shops. Just to name a few. And yes, ice cream is its own genre of food.

They also have the best options for grocery shopping. To go along with the traditional mega grocery store, you can find the wholesaler, the food co-ops (yes, plural), the employee owned warehouse store, the organic grocery and Trader Joes. Love it. There are also multiple Asian and Indian markets. My favorite places to go and buy random food products, often with non-English labels. Just remember your cash, the international markets rarely take credit.

There are also the great events that take place through the year. There is “Kites on Ice” in the winter, Arboretum tours in the spring and Hippie Christmas in the summer. Hippie Christmas you ask? Well, I’m sure that it happens in every university town, right around move-in time. In Madison, hippie Christmas is always the week of August 15th.

The vast majority of leases end at noon on August 14th and you move into your new apartment as soon as you can get keys on the 15th. The night of August 14th, it is very likely that you will find people either a. partying all night, or b. sleeping on their front lawns guarding their stuff. The streets are piled high with some of the funkiest couches you have ever seen and each year I wonder how there can be more 1970’s couches. Do old couches come to Madison to die? Not only do you find couches, but you also find beds, shelves and other furniture, cookware, clothes and the list goes on and on.

Those not afraid of picking through piles on the side of the road view this stuff as gold. The Madison hippies love August 15th. When I moved from one apartment to another in the summer of my first year I put a bunch of stuff at the curb on top of an already huge pile. When I came out twenty minutes later to deposit more hippie gold, my bookshelves were already gone. Way to pounce hippies, I hope your books enjoyed their new home.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Sponge Cupcakes with Chocolate Swiss Meringue Frosting

Let it be known that I have never had a real job. Nope, not ever. I’ve never had a nine-to-five, five day a week, holidays off kinda job. Sure, I’ve been employed since I was thirteen, but I can’t seriously call any of my jobs a profession.

My first job was as a coat check girl at my mom’s hotel. I would take the coats and give out the tags. For the next three hours I would guard the coats and read a book. At the end of the night I would return the coats to the correct ticket holders and reap the rewards. Drunk people and guys with fancy hats were good tippers. Once everyone was gone my mom and I would head home, my pockets full of one dollar bills. And yes, jokes would be made as I paid for things, through the week, with lots of ones.

Eventually, I got myself a job with a paycheck. A job with tips. A job with an awesome title. I was a Soda Jerk. I spent evenings working at a diner, making ice cream sundaes, chocolate milkshakes and brown cows. I wore my hot pink t-shirt and a pony tail. I ate way too much ice cream every night and came home with caramel in my hair and down my leg and on my back. Not quite sure how it got where it did. I would inevitably slip on some ice cream, entertaining all of the customers with my mad falling skills.

The job I held for the longest actually started out as my senior internship. In high school, I decided that I wanted to be a photographer when I grew up. I was going to zip around the world and shoot for National Geographic. Since Nat Geo didn’t have a local branch, I got an internship at a portrait studio. I got to learn the ins and outs of taking portraits, camera equipment and running a studio. I learned so much more as the years went by and I became great friends with the owners. People I’m happy to say I stay in touch with, even though I haven’t worked at the studio for eight years.

Eight years ago is when I held my last real job. Now, I haven’t been unemployed since then, I entered into the world of academia. Academia is a totally different world from the industrial or consumer world. I’ve passed from undergrad in a lab to graduate student with a hood of my own to postdoc on a mission. Working seventy-hour weeks, seven days a week, getting one paycheck a month and eating very haphazardly.

The most noticeable thing about academia is the constant flux of people. Every year there are new people coming and old people leaving, someone never being around for more than five years. Your facebook friends list gets longer and longer as your labmates shift through the years. It seems like you’re either saying hello or goodbye to someone, just like today.

Ignore that missing one, I don't know what happened to that cupcake. 
Must have wandered off...
Today is the last day of a labmates academic life. I know, it sounds dramatic, but it is a great thing! He’s leaving us for a job in the real world, with all those real world benefits and pitfalls. It’s the day that everyone in the academic bubble dreams of. (Unless you want to be a professor, then you’ll live your life in the academic bubble!) To celebrate his departure I made him cupcakes. Good riddance! Get out of here! We won’t miss you! I’m just kidding, you’re awesome, but then again, you already knew that. It says so on your laptop.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Green Velvet Cupcakes

Sorry mom, I’ve been bad this week. I haven’t eaten dinner all week. I know, I know, I’m terrible but I have some really good excuses! Let’s go through my week.

Sunday – Travelling back from New Jersey after a long weekend of unpacking boxes and moving furniture. My huge, strong, girl muscles were tired and it was all I could do not to fall asleep on the train. Making dinner was near impossible, so I decided to eat a brownie. Not even a good brownie, one that I had bought on Friday and was in my purse all weekend. I’m gross, I know.

Monday – Girls night! Okay, I actually did eat dinner Monday night, but it was not of my own doing. Recently I’ve been hanging out Monday nights with some awesome ladies from my department. We eat dinner, we gab and we watch silly girl TV. It’s excellent and a fantastic way to start the week. There are usually baked goods too, awesomeness.

Tuesday – I finally made it to the grocery store! I had big plans to leave work by six o’clock. This way I could walk home, get my car and be to the grocery store by six thirty. Thanks to a major accident on the highway, (right before my desired exit!) I didn’t make it to the store until seven thirty. Grocery shopping (plus a much needed trip to TJ Maxx!) done and I’m home by nine. Dinner was a banana. No, I’m lying; it was those rice crispy treats I showed you on Wednesday. They were delicious.

Wednesday - I’m now halfway through the week and you’re thinking I haven’t had a single real meal. Not true! The first two days of the week I had lunch at the food carts. Chicken and veggies over rice , it’s like having dinner for lunch. Which is good, because Wednesday I had Lettuce for dinner. The reason? I had grand plans of heading to the gym. With my gyms shoes on I get ready to head out the door and I glance at my computer. At some point in the evening I had picked up some malware and my computer was all jacked up. I spent the next two hours trying to restore my computer. Gym and dinner plans are thrown out the window.

Thursday – I decided I’m just going to start over next week with real food and I had toast for dinner. I slathered it with my own raspberry-peach jam. Then I made these, which will be quickly devoured by my coworkers. Then everyone will have green tongues. So festive!

Don’t worry mom, Friday comes with big plans! I’m taking the train to visit boyfriend and we’ll go out to dinner. I’ll have some protein and a whole lot of vegetables. I’ll even pay! I’m such a good girlfriend. Let’s not pretend that we’re going somewhere fancy though. Boyfriends new apartment is right around the corner from Panera and I’m going to get a salad.

Friday, February 25, 2011

S’mores Cupcakes

I don’t know about everyone else, but these are the facts of my life. Once I moved out of the house, my parents got all sorts of cool toys. I’m not saying that I was a deprived child (other than my sad cable tv-less existence), I had plenty of things to fill my childhood days with fun. I played the flute and my parents bought me a fancy flute with open keys. I still have it and think about trying to play it once and a while. I was a baton twirler and went to competitions all over the country. My trophies are still in residence at the Wilde parent household. My brother and I spent summers camping out in the backyard and riding our bikes along the creek.

Look at that chocolate ooze!

What I’m talking about are the cool toys that would have made our childhood even more carefree. It started slowly, with the John Deere. Johnnie showed up when I was in College and he was my dad’s new best friend. They would ride around the lawn in the summer and plow clean canyons in the snow in the winter. What Johnnie didn’t know, was that he was taking someone’s place. He was replacing my brother and I, Johnnie didn’t complain when he had to plow two feet of snow from a very long drive-way. Dad just had to feed Johnnie some gasoline and away he went to chew up the snow or grass.

Then came the boat, the hot tub, the air conditioning. The current toy that I’m totally jealous of is a fire pit. I think that is what I was thinking of when I threw together this recipe. Spring is coming soon, I can feel it trying to sneak up on winter, and spring is when the fire pit comes out. My dad gathers the firewood, the dog breaks up sticks to make kindling and my mom gets the marshmallows. Sounds like a great evening and I don’t think my apartment building would go for one in my unit.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Orange Chiffon Cupcakes & Orange Cream Cheese Frosting

Can you believe that it’s been one-hundred posts already! I feel like we’ve been through so much together. Since I’m 100, does this mean that Willard Scott is going to mention me in his Smucker’s 100? Maybe make some terribly inappropriate comment about me?

I thought that we should celebrate with some cupcakes. I know some people have been on the lookout for some savory posts; that will have to wait until after the party! Savory posts later this week, after I’m all sugared up.

Every time I ask my lab mates what I should make, I get the same suggestions. There are always requests for cheesecake, chocolate and cupcakes. One lab mate even went and bought me some cupcake liners, because he really likes cupcakes. I realized that I haven’t made cupcakes in months, so I made some to celebrate this momentous occasion.

No matter what anyone says about cupcakes being “so last year,” I’m still a HUGE cupcake fan. Every time boyfriend and I go to New York, we head to different bakeries and get cupcakes. Well, we get cupcakes, then I eat them. Boyfriend isn’t much of a dessert fan. I have more cookbooks for cupcakes than anything else. Cupcakes are just that perfect single serving of dessert. They are just the right size to have two, without feeling guilty about it. Macarons might be hot right now, but they will never replace my beloved cupcakes. Especially not these cupcakes, they were delicious.

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