Monday, May 28

Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes

These were made at the last minute, I haven't had the urge to bake lately.  Warm weather always bums me out because it messes up my bake times and flattens my buttercreams. :(

These were a white cake, which ended up browning too much, fresh strawberry filling and vanilla buttercream frosting.  The frosting was a bit too soft so they are in the fridge stiffening up a bit before serving.

Happy Memorial Day!

Saturday, May 19

Lemon Cream Cupcakes

I am always paranoid about trying new recipes, mostly because I never know how they will rise during the baking process. I filled 3/5 full, as I do most recipes, but this one could have used a tablespoon more of batter since they did not rise much. I made a lemon cake with a light lemon-vanilla cream filling, topped with a lemon buttercream. I whipped the hell out of the butter today and it came out perfectly fluffy!

 I topped with my favorite white sprinkles and yellow sugar, yay! I'm getting better with a piping bag, I swear :P

Tuesday, May 15

Banana Pineapple Bread

I swear I am done with bananas for a while now :)

I was going to use a faithful Paula Deen Banana Bread recipe, then I remembered there was a Disney World Banana Bread recipe...turns out they were the same...then I thought 'hmm, I wonder if I could make this into a Hummingbird sort of loaf' and enter the pineapple!  I debated on the coconut, maybe next time

and Finished (this recipe does produce a darker bread, the hole is from me poking it with a fork)

Banana Pineapple Bread         makes 2 loaves

* 1 cup butter, melted
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 2 cups sugar
* 3 cups flour
* 2 eggs
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 2 teaspoons water
* 2 teaspoons baking soda
* 1 teaspoon cinnamon
* 24 medium ripe and mashed bananas
* 8-10 oz crushed pineapples, drained  (smaller cans are 8 oz, i had a 20oz can so I split it in half, obviously)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease two loaf pans (i even grease my silicon, whatever)

 Sift together flour, salt, baking soda and cinnamon, set aside.
Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each one.
Add water and butter.
Add bananas, vanilla and pineapple — Mix well.
Fold in flour mixture until well incorporated.
Grease 2 loaf pans and divide batter equally between the 2 pans.
Bake for 60-65 minutes or until center of loaf is firm and a toothpick inserted to the center comes out clean.

Banana and Strawberry Whoopie Pies

Can you see a pattern yet?  When my produce starts to die, I turn it into something.  I always have bananas on hand, and this week, strawberries.  I've already pureed and stuck the remaining in the freezer, stay tuned for later in the week.

I am already growling at the oven, I never have any luck with whoopie pies when it comes to spreading..The first tray came out nice, the second tray blobbed together


The first, good tray

The bad tray, grr

Banana Cakes         about 12 whole whoopie pies

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 medium mashed bananas
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Whip butter and sugars until fluffy, about 3 minutes.  Add 1 egg and vanilla, mix until combined.  Combine all dry ingredients in a bowl, set aside.  Combine bananas and buttermilk in bowl, set aside.  Add banana mixture into butter mixture, alternating with dry mixture.  Do this in 2-3 turns until well combined.  Pipe out batter onto tray about 1 1/4 inch dollops, keep cakes at least 1 1/2 apart (more if possible).  Bake for 12-14 minutes until golden.

Strawberry Buttercream Filling

  • 2 sticks butter, room temp
  • 1/3 cup strawberry puree (or preserves)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Whip butter until fluffy, about 3-5 minutes. Add vanilla and puree, whip until combined.  Add powdered sugar slowly until combined.  Add more or less, depending on consistency.  Pipe onto cakes and sandwich.  Dust with powdered sugar or chocolate drizzle. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Tuesday, May 8

Chocolate Banana with Peanut Butter Brown Sugar Buttercream

Again, another mouthful :D

In case you haven't noticed, I have a banana thing going on right now.  The truth is, I buy bananas for Sofie's lunch each week and never even go through half of them.  Instead of tossing them out, I decided to bake them into things other than the usual, boring banana bread.

This combo seemed pretty neat, even though I hate cooked frostings - so much work and so easy to f#ck up.  Mine actually came out a bit thinner than I would have liked so it's chilling in the freezer right now until it thickens up.

Here is the recipe:

Chocolate Banana Cake - yields 16

  • 1 cup granulated white sugar
  • 1 cup  flour
  • 3/4 cup  unsweetened cocoa powder (regular or Dutch-processed)
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup mashed ripe bananas
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract 
Heat oven to 350 and line cupcake tins.  Sift all dry ingredients in bowl and set aside.  Beat all wet ingredients until smooth.  Add in dry ingredients gradually until well combined.  Fill liners 3/4 full and bake about 20 minutes. (mine took 21 and came out with great domes!)

Seriously, what a nice rack!(aside from the dirty tins)

Peanut Butter Brown Sugar Buttercream
  •  2 large egg whites 
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
In a heat proof bowl, whisk together egg whites, sugar and salt. Place over a pan of simmering water and whisk continuously until sugar is dissolved and warm to the touch. Pour mixture into bowl of electric mixer. Beat on medium speed until fluffy, approximately 15 minutes. Raise speed to high, and mix until stiff peaks form, about 5-7 minutes. Reduce speed to medium and add peanut butter,  butter a tablespoon at a time,  and vanilla until fluffy. Pipe onto cupcakes. Dust with crushed chocolate cookie crumbs or shaved chocolate.

 Final Verdict of a 5 Year Old: Sofie dislikes the cake but loves the my defense, she never likes anything I make