This is a blog of my adventures in the kitchen. I always like to try new things, and I'm looking up different recipes constantly. Some recipes on here will be my own, some will be found recipes. Some will work, some won't. Trial and error, right? I'm no professional and I don't claim to be, I just enjoy cooking. :)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Mini Cupcakes

Okay, so this definitely doesn't fall into a "healthy" category, but everyone needs to splurge once in awhile, right?

A best friend of mine is having a grand opening for her clothing store this week and asked that I make mini cupcakes for it. Not wanting to make TOO many, I decided to make four flavors using only two batches of batter. You could actually get all four of these flavors with just one batch of vanilla batter, if you didn't want too many, by just adding cocoa to the batter for the chocolate ones. The two batches I made still baked around 200 cupcakes.

I figured I'd share how to make these, but it's pretty basic. It's just taking regular cake batter and regular buttercream and adding a few extra ingredients.

For all four of these recipes I used my basic buttercream recipe:

1 cup softened butter
1 lb powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
and enough water or milk to give you the consistency you want

Beat the butter and vanilla together, then slowly add the powdered sugar. Then VERY SLOWLY add the liquid to desired thickness.

Now, let me tell you how to bake these little cuties, and then I'll get on with the ingredients. Since these are smaller than regular cupcakes there are a few adjustments you'll want to make. You're going to want to lower the oven temperature by about 20 - 30 degrees F. I baked mine at 320F. You'll also want to cut the baking time by about half. The chocolate and coconut cupcakes took about 8 minutes to bake and the lemon took around 10. Other than that it's just like baking any cupcakes.

First, Death by Chocolate.

This is a chocolate cupcake with a sinful chocolate buttercream. Just use your favorite chocolate cake recipe, or even box mix. Make your cupcakes as directed above and let them cool -- takes no time at all.

For the frosting make the buttercream above and to that add about 1/4 to 1/2 cup melted semi-sweet, bittersweet or dark chocolate chips. Mix it up and ice the cakes! :) Mmmm mmm!!!

Island Paradise

This is my absolute favorite flavor combination. It's a coconut cake with a pineapple frosting. Make your favorite white or vanilla cake batter. To that add a good heap of coconut and some coconut extract, tasting for desired "coconutiness" (technical term).

Bake and cool.

For the frosting you'll again use the basic buttercream, but add a couple spoonfuls of crushed pineapple. This will thin down the frosting quite a bit, so just add more powdered sugar to your desired consistency.

Cherry Lemonade

Again, start with vanilla or white batter.  Add an extra 1/4 cup flour and the zest AND juice of one lemon.

Bake and cool.

For the frosting, start with buttercream - of course.  Chop up a handful of maraschino cherries and add that plus some of the cherry juice to the frosting.  Mix up and add more juice or powdered sugar until desired consistency. (I'm sounding a bit redundant, eh)

Peanut Butter Cup

For this, I had wished I had some of those cute mini Reese's PB cups to put on top, but... I did not.

Start with chocolate batter and bake the cupcakes.  Easy, eh?

Now the frosting on this one is just a LITTLE different than the others.  Make the buttercream above, but cut the butter in half and add 1/2 to 3/4 cup peanut butter.  Mix it up and DONE!  :)

As far as flavors go, the sky is the limit. Play around with it and come up with your favorite. :)

So, next time you're hosting a get together, think about these. They're pretty quick, fairly easy and quite cheap to make. :) And, c'mon, who DOESN'T love cupcakes?! :)