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Posts tagged ‘raspberry’

Boozy bakin’ for my birthday!

My birthday was last Thursday.  I’ll tell you about it.

What’s better than making yourself cupcakes? Someone making them for you.

Oh heyyy birthday breakfast! (And lunch and afternoon snack…)

What’s better than buying yourself flowers? Someone special sending them to you at work.

Not the most glamorous picture, but the flowers are so pretty!!!!

What’s better than your coworkers leaving you “happy birthday” notes and bringing you thoughtful gifts and receiving phone calls, voicemails, and texts all day? Then going out with your best girlfriends?  And then being treated to an amazing dinner with family the next day?

Absolutely nothing.

I had such an awesome birthday. Seriously, it rocked. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again.  I know the best people on the planet.

Aaaand because I’m a little bit selfish, I made myself a little sumn’ sumn’ too!

Cupcakes! Champagne cupcakes, actually.  Mhm.

I love baking with booze. It feels so…adult. I don’t know if “adult” is the word I’m looking for, but I’m about 99.9% sure that you wouldn’t find champagne cupcakes at a six-year-old’s birthday party.

These little suckers are good. End of story. It’s a vanilla champagne cupcake filled with raspberry champagne pastry cream.

Oh, and topped with sprinkles because it was my birthday and I felt like being festive. And let’s get real, there isn’t really anything else that says “happy birthday” quite like rainbow sprinkles do.

The cake is delicious on its own; but fill it with the pastry cream, and you my friend, are in business.

Oh yeah, and the buttercream?  Top notch.  Delish.  Superb.  Excellante!

Someone get me a thesaurus, ASAP.

Make them if you’re celebrating something.  Make them if you’re not celebrating something.  Make them, and come up with something to celebrate.  Celebrate the cupcakes for all I care…just make them!!!

Champagne Cupcakes with Raspberry Champagne Buttercream

The Cupcake
from Sprinklebakes

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup champagne

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and line the cupcake pan.

2. Cream butter and sugar until fluffy.

3. Add eggs one at a time, combining thoroughly after each addition.

4. Add vanilla.

5. In a separate bowl, combine dry ingredients (flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder). Set aside.

6. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk the sour cream and champagne together.

7. In three additions and starting with flour, add the flour mixture and champagne mixture.

8. Fill cups 2/3 full and bake for roughly 15-19 minutes, depending on your oven.

9. Let cool completely before filling.

Raspberry Champagne Pastry Cream
adapted from Sprinklebakes also.

1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup champagne
3 tbsp cornstarch
6 tbsp granulated sugar
1 egg
2 egg yolks
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup raspberry jam

1. Whisk 1/4 cup of the heavy cream and cornstarch in a bowl. Set aside.

2. In a medium sauce pan, whisk together the other 1/4 cup of heavy cream, champagne, sugar and jam. Bring this mixture to a boil and remove from heat.

3. Beat the egg and yolks into the cornstarch mixture.

4. Pour 1/3 of the boiling champagne mixture into the egg mixture, stirring constantly to ensure that the eggs do not cook.

5. Bring the other 2/3 of the champagne mixture to a boil again. Once at a boil, pour in the egg mixture in a steady stream, whisking constantly until the mixture thickens.
I thought I was doing it wrong, until suddenly it started to thicken up. It takes awhile, just be patient!)

6. Remove from heat and add vanilla and butter. Stir to combine.

Note: Let the pastry cream cool completely before filling the cupcakes. Once you let it cool off of the stove for a little bit, just pop it in the fridge and it will cool off nicely.

FYI: Use that nifty cupcake corer I told you about last time, and fill the center with this tasty stuff! What’s pretty awesome about it is it makes the cake super moist, AND it packs a “just-right” raspberry punch. Yum yum yum!

Raspberry Champagne Buttercream

2 sticks of unsalted butter, slightly softened.
1/4 tsp salt
3 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 tbsp soy milk
1/4 cup + 1 tsp heavy cream
3 tbsp champagne
1 2-second pour of white zinfandel (Why 2-seconds? Because I didn’t measure. Don’t hate. Just do.)
1/3 cup raspberry jam

1. In a small saucepan, heat raspberry jam over low heat, stirring occasionally. Set aside to cool. You’re looking for a liquid, not a congealed jam.

2. Beat butter until light and fluffy.

3. Add salt and confectioners’ sugar. Beat, but do not combine thoroughly.

4. Add milk, vanilla, champagne, and zin. Once everything is evenly combined, add the cooled raspberry jam. Beat the mixture until combined and you have reach a desired consistency. If the buttercream isn’t thick enough, add more confectioners’ sugar.

Note: This frosting does not come out pink!! It’s a  pale, white-ish pink. I added a small amount of pink food coloring.

5. Frost. (duh)

Bon appétit!


Don’t feel blue, white chocolate!

Dark, milk, unsweetened, bittersweet, and semi-sweet.  Chocolate is great.  Really, it is.  Dark chocolate is even good for your heart, believe it or not.  How wonderful that something that seems so bad for you is actually recommended daily to keep your heart and cardiovascular system working well.  Ha!  Awesome.  But wait, there’s a member of the chocolate family we’re forgetting about: white chocolate.  Where exactly does it belong on the Chocolate family tree?  Well, it doesn’t.  It’s made of cocoa butter, milk, and sugar.  So technically it’s not really chocolate at all because it doesn’t contain any cocoa solids.  Aww, poor white chocolate.  So pretty, so sweet, but so lost.  There’s no need for it to be sad, though, because there are tons of people out there who would choose white chocolate over dark any day of the week.  So chin up, little guy, there’s hope for you yet.

White chocolate is something I like with something.  I can’t just take a big ol’ bite of a white chocolate bar.  It’s just too sweet, even for me.  Something I thought would be a good (and tasty) compromise would be a white chocolate cake.  I wasn’t sure how it would taste, but I figured that it would add a subtle, sweet flavor that would differ from a plain cake recipe.  There was no question as to what I would do for a frosting, either.  Raspberry!  And to counteract the sweetness of the cake I would make it a raspberry cream cheese frosting.  It sounded quite divine to me!

An option I thought about was just making a vanilla bean cupcake and adding white chocolate, but because I had never baked with white chocolate before, I decided to go the recipe route. This recipe was honestly a shot in the dark.  I chose it because it contains sour cream and because it seemed like a fair recipe for someone who was a white chocolate virgin.

Oh, did the mention of sour cream in cupcakes freak you out?  Don’t let it.  It’s a pretty normal thing, and you can’t taste it in the finished product. Basically it makes cake moist. Can’t go wrong with that!  But also note that I substituted 1/2 of the sour cream for vanilla pudding, because I like vanilla pudding in my cake recipes. It’s just…good. What can I say.

White Chocolate Sour Cream Cupcakes
(Adapted from Couture Cupcakes)

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 2/3 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
4 oz (1/2 cup) white chocolate
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup vanilla pudding
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
2 eggs

1. Preheat oven at 350 degrees and line the cupcake pan.

2. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, and salt.

3. Melt the white chocolate, butter, and water.  Set aside to cool slightly.

4. Add the melted chocolate mixture to the flour mixture, and mix lightly until combined.

5. Add sour cream, pudding, vanilla, baking soda, and eggs. Beat  on low for 2 minutes.

6. Fill the baking cups 1/2 way full.  These do rise so they will overflow if you fill them too full!

7. Bake for 20-23 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.  Let cool.

Story time.  I was smart enough to listen to the originator of this recipe when she said that they rise.  That’s something I hardly ever listen to, and I’m not really sure why.  It’s just a weird thing.  Anyway, I set my timer for 20 minutes, as my oven runs hot, even if I adjust the temperature.  Well 20 minutes was a little much.  They came out darker than I think they’re supposed to be.  Not horribly dark, still edible (yes of course I tried one), but cutting the baking time by a few minutes definitely wouldn’t be a crime.  On to round two.  I put them in the oven, set it to 17 minutes, continued to listen to Adele on iTunes, and started some procrastinated homework.  The next thing I knew I realized that I could hear a faint beeping…THE TIMER WAS GOING OFF!  So much for cutting the baking time.  Sigh. So in the end I have no idea how long those cupcakes baked for.  Now that first batch doesn’t look so bad.  Perspective is everything, I guess.

My tip to you: don’t turn the volume too high while you bake and/or pay attention to your cupcakes the first time.

That’s batch #1.  I suppose it could be worse, right?  No, I will not show you batch #2.

Okay, time to make some frosting!

Raspberry Cream Cheese Frosting

8 oz. cream cheese
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 1/3 cup raspberry puree

For the puree:
2 tbsp of sugar
1 tbsp water.

1. Throw ’em in the food processor.
2. Strain.
3. Done!

Back to the frosting…

1. Beat whipping cream until it forms soft peaks.
2. Add vanilla and sugar. Beat until well combined and smooth.
3. Add the cream cheese. Beat until smooth.
4. Add the raspberry puree. Fold in.

So not only did I have some issues with baking time, but for some reason my cupcake-frosting abilities were hindered. Maybe I was thrown off by my baking blunder. Maybe I was rushing. Maybe I’m just making excuses. The point is that only a few came out looking presentable, so there aren’t too many pictures to share.

Regardless, they’re delightful. 🙂

When I make white chocolate cupcakes again, first and foremost, I will bake in silence.  I will also probably add a little more white chocolate.  The cupcakes were very good, they just needed a little more white chocolate flavor, in my opinion.  I also suggest using more raspberry puree in the frosting.  It was a very delicate raspberry flavor, and I was looking for a slightly bigger “kick”.

Oh!  And in support of my obsessive baking addiction, one of my best friends in the world gave me some adorable cupcake molds.  So cute!! ❤

So, white chocolate, you are appreciated.  Be proud of your ingredients!  There will be more recipes where you will shine as the main ingredient, and I promise from the bottom of my chocolate-loving heart, I will not over-bake you ever again.

For those of you who are weary of white chocolate, this is a perfect recipe for you! Bake them. Taste them. Enjoy the white-chocolatey goodness.

As always, bon appétit, and thanks for reading! 🙂