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My name is Lisa and I'm a crafty girl with wanderlust working as an engineer by day. My blog chronicles projects in my home as well as pictures and stories from my travels.

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Entries in Cupcakes (4)

Wednesday
Nov052014

Caramel Apple Cupcakes

Last week my department at work had its annual chili cook-off competition. I didn't enter a chili but I decided to make some cupcakes to share. Last year I made chocolate chili cupcakes and wanted to make something different this time. Fall is in full swing here so I decided to make caramel apple cupcakes.

To make the apple cupcakes I adapted Paula Deen's apple cake recipe to my preferences, like swapping out walnuts for pecans and increasing the amount of cinnamon. I also exchanged the vegetable oil for some of my homemade applesauce which is healthier and makes the cake really moist.

Cupcake Ingredients
3 cups diced cooking apples
1 cup chopped pecans
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 tablespoon cinnamon
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups sugar
1-1/4 cups applesauce
3 eggs

Cupcake Directions
Preheat the oven to 325 F and prepare muffin pans with cupcake liners. Mix together apples, pecans, vanilla and cinnamon in a bowl.


In a second bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda and salt. With an electric mixer beat together the sugar, applesauce and eggs.


Add the dry ingredients to applesauce mixture and beat until fully combined. Fold the apple mixture into batter with a spatula or spoon.

Fill the cupcake liners 3/4 full and bake until toothpick inserted into the middle of a cupcake comes out clean, about 40 minutes.

To add a caramel component to the cupcakes I made Wilton's caramel buttercream icing and iced the cupcakes with a large star decorating tip.

The cupcakes are a great fall treat and were a big hit with my department. I am definitely planning to add this to my autumn rotation of baking treats.

Saturday
Nov092013

Chocolate Chili Cupcakes

Yesterday was the annual chili cook off in my department at work. I just moved into the department this past summer so this was my first year participating. I didn't prepare a chili for the competition but I did want to contribute a dessert so I thought that making some chocolate chili cupcakes would be perfect.

To make the cupcakes I adapted my go-to one bowl chocolate cupcake recipe from Good Housekeeping's Illustrated Cookbook. I've had that cookbook since I was in high school and I still love it as a reference for basic recipes.

I started off by omitting the vanilla from the recipe and then added ancho chili pepper powder, cinnamon and mini chocolate chips. After baking I finished the cupcakes by topping them with whipped chocolate ganache and some red dragees for a little fun.

I think that the cupcakes turned out great with the extra little kick. Some of my co-workers were a little hesitant about them when I told them about the chili powder but in the end they were a big hit with everyone.

Ingredients
2 cups flour
1-3/4 cups sugar
3/4 cups unsweetened cocoa
1-1/4 cups milk
3/4 cups butter
3 eggs
1 tablespoon ancho chili pepper powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1-1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon double-acting baking powder
1 cup mini chocolate chips (optional) 

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
Beat together all ingredients except chocolate chips in a mixer at low speed until well mixed

Gently fold chocolate chips into the batter

Line two twelve cavity muffin tins with liners and fill halfway with batter
Bake for 20 minutes or until inserted toothpick in center of a cupcake comes out clean 

Let cupcakes cool and then ice with chocolate ganache or buttercream icing

Enjoy!

Saturday
May052012

National Scrapbook Day Cupcakes

 

Happy National Scrapbook Day! Today I am excited to be heading off to scrapbook with some friends at a little overnight getaway. I haven't been to a crop in several years so I am really looking forward to this.

I thought for fun I would bring some cupcakes to share at the crop. I made some yellow cupcakes and then while they were baking and cooling I made Happy NSD cupcake picks to decorate them.

Using powerpoint I made little pink circles that said "Happy NSD" on them. For fun I also added a pair of grey scissors (from the webdings font). After printing out the circles I used my large circle punch to punch them out. I glued them to some cranberry cardstock with a glue stick and  then cut them out leaving a thin border. 

To make them into picks I attached small skewers to the back of them with double sided tape and then layered another pink circle on top of the back to finish them off. 

By this time the cupcakes had cooled so I iced them with some pink icing. To get the right color to match the picks I used some burgundy color paste and a tiny, tiny amount of blue. After inserting the Happy NSD picks into the cupcakes they were all finished and ready to take to the crop.

What are you doing to celebrate National Scrapbooking Day? Are you going to a crop with some friends or scrapbooking at home?

Tuesday
Feb142012

Valentines Day Mini Heart Cupcakes

Happy Valentine's Day! Last night I made these mini cupcakes to give to Frank today for Valentine's Day. Since it was a week night I wanted to do something simple but festive so I made little candy hearts to top the cupcakes for decoration.

While my cupcakes were baking I melted some red candy melts in a squeeze bottle on low heat in the microwave. I laid out a sheet of wax paper on my work surface and drew hearts on it with using the melted candy. If you have to use too much pressure to get the candy to come out of the bottle, just pop it back into the microwave for a few more seconds. Conversely, if it is coming out too easily and making a mess, a little time in the refrigerator will get the candy to the right consistency.

When I am making candy designs like this I like to make extras in case I don't like how some turn out or some break. Any that you don't use you can melt down to use again or you can just eat them like me. Also, I did mine free hand but if you want a little more consistency or have a more elaborate design, draw or print out your design on paper. You can then place the paper under the wax paper and just trace your design. 

The hearts will firm up pretty quickly, but if you want to speed up the process placing them in the refrigerator will do the trick. Once the hearts are completely cooled you can just peel them off the wax paper.

To decorate my cupcakes I iced the top with buttercream icing using a #18 star decorating tip and then placed one of the candy hearts on top. I think they look cute and I hope that Frank likes them.

Is anyone else making some sweets for their sweet? What kind of homemade treats do you like best?