Saturday, December 25, 2010
i have been baking quite a bit in the last month! the holidays have been busy and it seems i have been neglecting the blog. so many recipes to share, so many sweet tales to tell.
to start off, please meet the new love of my baking life:
so. in. love. hanukkah harry is a good man!
about a month ago my lovely co-workers and i decided to have a bake off. there are a lot of skilled bakers in my office, so it was getting pretty competitive. lots of shit talking, lots of planning, but all in good fun. we even put out an email to the whole office to recruit judges. the bake off dessert had to have an autumn theme. this is what i made:
PUMPKIN CUPCAKES. BUTTERSCOTCH CHIPS. VANILLA CREAM CHEESE FROSTING. YUM!
I used this recipe for the pumpkin cupcakes, but also added a pinch of cloves, a pinch of black pepper, and a teaspoon of maple syrup. I also added butterscotch chips, folding them in before spooning out the batter into the liners.
i made vanilla cream cheese frosting. it's easy and delicious to make this from scratch. the key is to have your cream cheese and butter very soft at room temp. also, sifting the sugar helps keep the icing light and smooth. with an icing this simple, these factors will make a large impact. i also like to add the contents of one vanilla bean.
VANILLA CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
1 package of full fat cream cheese (8 oz)
1 stick unsalted butter
2-3 cups powdered sugar (i lean closer to 2 cups as the cupcakes were pretty sweet)
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 vanilla bean (the seeds only, not the pod)
A TIP: save the vanilla bean pods- put them in a jar with some white sugar and shake it up. in a day or so you have homemade vanilla sugar. vanilla sugar makes a cup of pg tips with milk even more delicious!
the cupcakes were a big hit! although i didn't win first prize, i was a close second. i did hold the title for 2 years, so it's only fair someone else get the glory for a short while... i let them know, i am ready for a rematch!