cleverchickadee


Divine Cupcake Intervention by quornflour

I live one town over from Boston. From the time I moved back east, my faux niece Alexz has asked when she can come visit me.

Her parents and I decided that this year, she was old enough to board a plane all by herself. So I booked a ticket so that she could take her first solo flight (across the country) to come visit me.

Her spring break coincided with Patriot’s Day, so of course I thought it would be a fun outing for us to go check out the Marathon.

Alexz is a super smart kid, though she is only 10, she is definitely smarter than a lot of kids her age (and it’s not just me that says that even if I am a tad biased).

When she arrived she went on and on about this show “DC Cupcakes” that she LOVES, I had never heard of it.

She showed me a book she had and gushed on about how amazing Sophie and Katherine are and how they make things out of cupcakes and how they made a dress for DC Fashion week “where the trends are set”. She talked about them as though they were close personal friends of hers. She idolizes them and wants to be just like them when she grows up. Frankly if a kid is going to pick reality TV stars for idols, she could definitely do worse.

Sunday we trekked out to OSV (Old Sturbridge Village) and since we were meeting friends there, one of whom is a vegan we made, that’s right vegan cupcakes using my tried and true favorite recipe.

Monday was race day, so we got up and started in on what had quickly become our routine, the Coffee shop: coffee and scone for me, hot chocolate and chocolate croissant for her. Then we hopped on the redline and headed into the city.

We went to the commons and rode on the swan boats. The weather was beautiful and perfect, (especially compared to 2012 when it was so hot some people had deferred.)

As we worked our way to the finish line an ice-cream truck passed. Alexz excitedly asked if she could have ice-cream. Being the responsible Aunt that I am, I told her, “no sweets before lunch, but I reserve the right to change my mind.”

We continued our walk, as we headed up Newbury Street I noticed a cupcake shop, mind you, I had not made the connection that Georgetown Cupcakes was in fact DC Cupcakes. She had not seen it and I needed coffee, so I said to her, “remember how I said I reserve the right to change my mind?”

“Yeah”, she says.

“You want a cupcake?”

I have seen this kid excited, but OH MY HECK, she went crazy, I instantly went from Best Aunt Ever, to BEST.AUNT.EVER!

She was very proud for knowing about the secret cupcake, which she of course ordered.

After calling all of her friends to brag about going to Georgetown Cupcakes, we headed to the Marathon finish line.

We found spots upfront across the street from the medic tent. She asked about why there were so few women, and counted each one she saw come across.

I told her what I knew about the history of the race, she commented on how crazy it was that anyone would want to intentionally run 26 miles as fast as they could. I told her about Katherine Switzer and being hassled (to put it nicely) when she first ran the marathon.

And then something happened… she went from peppy to – SUGAR CRASH MELTDOWN COUNTDOWN. I looked at her and knew we needed to get some protein in the kid, or I would be sorry. How true that was I did not yet know, so instead of heading to the finish line to meet a friend, instead we headed back to the Gardens and I sent a text to my friend that we were going to get lunch instead.

We headed to a restaurant, when we got there my friend got a call from her roommate, wondering where she was, and that’s when we found out what had happened, a mere 15-20 minutes from leaving the finish line.

Now I am not one to go on about God or Divine intervention, but I must say, this was a Divine Cupcake Intervention for sure. Had it not been for one awesome 10 year old and her obsession over cupcakes, well I don’t even want to think about that.

With or without cupcakes, I am glad she had a sugar crash, she is after all the BEST.NIECE.EVER.

Advertisements


Guest Blog: Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Icing by cleverchickadee

Here is another blog post from the ever lovely faux kid sister Sara, this time she made cake, sadly I was traveling and haven’t tried it, but I have heard from others that it is a real shame I missed out.

Now I don’t have too and neither do you.

Pan:

I like baking interesting things and fell in love with the idea of a giant cupcake. The pan I used is found here: http://amzn.com/B00346BZOM. You can also use a Bundt pan for this recipe. Or probably any kind of cake pan you wants (even a regular cupcake pan).

Cake:

Ingredients:

  • 2 ½ cups all purpose flour
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 15 oz. can pumpkin
  • 3 eggs beaten
  • 1 ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. ground cloves
  • ¼ tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. pumpkin spice

Mix all dry ingredients together in large bowl.

Beat eggs and stir in remaining ingredients to dry mixture. Mix well.

Preheat oven to 325°F. Pour mixture into greased and floured pan.

Bake for ~1 hour 10 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove cake from oven and allow to cool completely in pan.

Icing:

Ingredients:

  • 2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sifted confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

In a medium bowl, cream together the cream cheese and butter. Mix in the vanilla and gradually stir in the confectioners’ sugar.

Store extra in the refrigerator. Frosting the cake is easiest when it’s not cold.

Assembly:

Cut off excess cake so it is flat with the top of the pan.

You can eat this bit with some extra icing. Remove the cake from the pans. Frost the top of the bottom piece.

Carefully place the top over the bottom, trying to keep as centered as possible.

This is a very top-heavy cake, so you might want to use toothpicks between the layers to keep it together. If you are traveling with the cake, I suggest assembly on-site. Frost the top and you’re good to go! I prefer to frost it as thick as possible, covering up all the ridges. A tip for frosting this design: frost with the ridges and UP the ridges, not down.



Citrus Spice Cake by quornflour

My first attempt to make this cake actually ended up incredibly tart. Since I made it up as I went, I simply made a few minor adjustments.

Now, the first cake was still edible, and actually in some ways perfect, for a quick little bite of a snack, like sour patch kids, a little sweet and a little tart. It was not a cake to be eaten in huge pieces.

Here is what you will need for 2 cake rounds.

  • 3 Cups of flour
  • 1 ½ Cups of sugar
  • 1 Cup Tang powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tablespoons powdered ginger
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon cloves
  • 2/3 Cups of oil
  • 2 teaspoons vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons vanilla
  • The juice of 3-4 lemons (if you do not get a cup of juice from your lemons top off with water to make 1 Cup)
  • 1 Cup of water

In a large bowl combine the dry ingredients mix with a whisk.

In a smaller bowl mix the wet ingredients.

Pour wet ingredients into the dry ones and mix with whisk.

Pour into greased and floured round cake dishes and bake at 350⁰ for 30 minutes or until a wooden toothpick comes out dry.

Let cool on a rack and frost as desired.

Now, if you want to recreate the super tart use the juice of 8 lemons instead of 4. You are probably thinking to yourself, QF WTF were you thinking to think that the juice from 8 lemons was not going to end up super tart?!?

Yeah, yeah I know. I did a half recipe and had 4 lemons that needed to be squeezed and well, I guess part of me was not thinking.

Anyway, the cake takes on a cool orange color on account of the tang, I personally think it was delicious with chocolate frosting.




%d bloggers like this: