Sunday, January 2, 2011

Cupcakes... oh cupcakes...

HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE! I hope you all had wonderful new years and that you rang in the new year with those you love! My new year was supposed to be wonderful, then turned crummy, and then turned wonderful again. Sometimes the simpler plans are the best ones. That being said, I am officially vowing that I will be hosting a dinner party at my house next year complete with full blown meals and tons of little appetizer things to eat! 

BUT on to the good stuff. After the adventures of new year's eve, I was certain that 2011 would have to be better than the last day of 2010 and so I decided to kick off the year with some baking of cupcakes for our family dinner on New Year's Day. I also figured that since I was going to be seeing the fam that this would be an awesome chance to try out a new recipe and get some feedback on it. Well... I tried out a chocolate peanut butter cupcake recipe from Martha Stewart's Cupcakes (aka My Cupcake Bible). I hate to say this but Martha, it was such a disappointment. The recipe tells you to make a chocolate batter and a peanut butter batter (this part was easy). Then you are instructed to:
  1. Scoop in 2 tablespoons of chocolate batter
  2. Then scoop in 1 tablespoon of peanut butter batter
  3. Then scoop in 1 tablespoon of chocolate batter
  4. And then scoop in another tablespoon or peanut butter batter
  5. Then swirl. 

Now, while this may sound (and look) simple enough, I truly feel that perhaps TEASPOONS would have been a more accurate measurement because these cupcakes were FULL before they even hit the oven. Again, I trusted Martha's advice thinking that maybe these cupcakes really wouldn't rise much. *sigh* I was wrong. They rose.... and they rose and rose and rose until they spilled all over the flats of the muffin pan and all over the bottom of my oven. Needless to say I was a little upset but tried to remedy the situation. I scraped off the flats and discarded or redistributed the batter in hopes of just having this be a little mistake. Nope... wrong again! After 40 minutes of baking, I had a giant cupcake mess not only on my muffin pan but all over the bottom of my oven too which made me wanna scream. Please keep in mind that I had time constraints that I was working with too and this flop was not helping. 

So it was 'au revoir' to those cupcakes and on to a new recipe. After deciding that I was craving a banana based cupcake, I gave Martha one last shot with her Banana Cupcakes with Caramel Buttercream... except that I didn't want caramel buttercream, I wanted cream cheese frosting and I wanted white chocolate in my cupcakes too! After a brief mission of hunting for eggs on New Year's Day and a text message to the fam that I was running late due to a cupcake crisis, the new cupcake mission was in full effect.

Thankfully, not only did these cupcakes turn out amazing, I swear I have found my new favourite recipe for Banana Cupcakes. I tweaked the recipe a bit by adding some cinnamon (about 1 tsp) and nutmeg (about 1/4 of a tsp) in addition to 6 oz of chopped white chocolate. Oh sweet mother, these babies are DELICIOUS! The recipe made 24 cupcakes and 2 small (2 1/2 in x 5 1/2 in) loaves. I think the key is to making these delightfully moist and soft and wonderful little cakes is to JUST BARELY mixing them. Mix them (I used my mixer) until almost all of the flour is absorbed. I promise, it will be worth it. I also used my Oxo Large Cookie Scoop and I swear it makes the most perfect cupcakes ever. One scoop with this scoop is the perfect amount of batter. 

PLUS (wow I've used CAPS a lot in this post), I have discovered my new favourite cream cheese frosting recipe. It's Anna Olson's Cream Cheese Frosting from her Banana White Chocolate Cake. It's smooth, it's creamy and really people, this is what dreams are made of! Not only is it amazing but it pipes beautifully.

And as such, here they are in their glory plus the loaves. Please note that I altered the image so that you could see the detail of the piping!

Happy New Year darlings :) 



  1. these look so good!!! you know how i feel about banana nice piping!