hello cupcake

hello cupcake
cupcake heaven

Friday, August 28, 2009

"Happy Hour"+Cupcake="Happy Cupcake Hour"

Bring on the cupcakes, and the mojito's? Apparently you can get your drink on "cupcake style" at this new bakeshop in Chicago. I didn't know "Happy Hour" could be so sweet! Having never been a drinker it's not something I'd care to indulged in, however this sounds fierce. I haven't been to More's bakery but I hear every Wednesday and Friday during "Happy Hour" or should I say "Happy Cupcake Hour" tasters are welcome to indulge in weekly cocktail cupcakes with pomegranate mojito or the Cuba Libre, yup-inside the cupcake. Wow talking about a real bit size treat. Sounds like a party to me! Seemingly, Chi-town is taking NO punches with this cupcakery serving serious adult-friendly fanfare. I mean it's hard to beat the concept of alcohol with sweets, I guess. Isn't that the icing on the cake? So why not step in the name of love and get your drink on cupcake style. If you happen to be in the windy city or passing thru and go to the "Happy Cupcake Hour" let me know how it goes. I also found this recipe for mojito cupcakes on the internet. Check it out.

disclaimer: this is not my recipe/ I have not made these cupcakes

Mojito Cake:
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 tsp baking powder
- zest and juice of 1/2 a lime
- handful of fresh mint.
- 1 shot spiced or dark rum (if you've only got white rum, use brown or muscavado sugar above)
- 1/4 cup melted butter
- 1 beaten egg
- 1 cup milk (milk past its date preferred)
Mojito Icing:
- 1 1/2 cups powdered (icing) sugar (or more, depending on rum amount)- 3 T butter, softened
- zest and juice of half a lime
- half shot of spiced or dark rum (or more or less to taste)
- 12 sprigs of mint garnish (optional)

Preheat your oven to 350F
Mix all the dry ingredients together in a big bowl.
Melt the butter in the microwave and add the beaten egg to it.
Add that to the dry ingredients, stirring in the milk and rum until smooth.
Zest an entire lime, add half the zest to the bowl.
Squeeze in half of the lime as well (keep the other half and its zest for the icing!).
Finely chop your fresh mint, and add that to the batter, mixing well.
Split the batter between 12 lined cupcake wrappers.
Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the sides pull away and are golden brown (the tops should be spongy to the touch).
When done, remove to a wire rack and wait until they're completely cool before you attempt to ice them

Mojito Icing:
Mix the butter and sugar together in a bowl until smooth.
Add the rum and lime, mix further until stiff peaks form (add more powdered sugar if necessary).
Taste to see if it needs more rum, and add as appropriate.
I use a flat knife to spread the icing onto the tops of the mojito cupcakes because a spatula is just too big.
Then add a sprig of mint on each to garnish.

posted by Nicole Friday for the Cupcake Craze

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Cupcake Cure

Last night was a ruff night in my house. My little one 17 1/2 months old woke up around midnight after going to bed at 7pm. He was running a fever so I did what every mother would. I picked him up and held him until he felt better. With the help of a nice cool rub down, some water which he drank as if he had been in the desert for a month and a dose of Tylenol seem to do the trick. In total I was up for about an hour.

While I was half awake comforting my little one. My husband was having a mini cough attack in our bedroom. I wanted to check on him too, but kinda had my hands full already. I figured he could manage. He(my husband) was really tired last night and decided to turn in early. It's rare that he does that- usually I'm the one getting my much needed beauty rest but surprisingly- he was the winner of lights our last night. Anyway after listening to my husband gasp for air between every cough I heard the safety gate open, he proceeded down the stairs in search of some relief for his nagging cough, I concluded. Maybe some water, a cough drop, cold-eze or inhaler would do the trick. A few minutes later- complete silence. He must have found the cure, I say to myself.

Stay with me....

Quietly, I returned to bed. In desperate need of some more sleep- I pray...please no coughing, crying, whining, early morning potty trips or anything in between. Just sleep, I beg you until the sun comes up.

Fast forward to the morning...

My husband and I met in the playroom where we often congregate in the morning with the kids. I asked him how he was doing this morning. He said okay- but thought he may have a sinus infection. Briefly we discussed his coughing episode last night, I asked him what he had found downstairs to stop the coughing. And he replied genuinely, "I went downstairs for some cupcakes!" Needless to say....we laughed, and laughed. Who knew cupcakes could cure a choking attack?

posted by Nicole Friday for the Cupcake Craze

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Say it ain't so...a cupcake what?

A cupcake truck! Now that takes the cake or should I say cupcake. The craze continues...
Well my friendly neighborhood ice cream truck patrons, change has finally come to the streets of New York City. Same rundown whitish truck, but with a different ring tone, this one with the sweet sound of cupcakes. Sadly enough, the time has come for Mr. Softee
to move over 'cause there's a new "truck" in town, and his name is CupcakeStop. Yup, a mobile cupcake truck. That's Brilliant! The ideal mobile food cupcake in one hand and blackberry in the other. I really wish I had thought of this one.

Cleverly the CupcakeStop publishes his daily locations on twitter, so that devotees don't have to worry about chasing him down, literally (much like the ever so familiar run down the street after Mr. Softee when we were kids- and if you have kids today you're still running). Bring back any childhood memories? Certainly does. But don't be fooled by the white truck that you may walk or drive pass temporarily parked on fifth avenue- although he may look the part chances are there is no ice cream aboard that vessel. Just cupcakes. A dead giveaway are the prints of stock photo cupcakes decorated on the white exterior and of course the CupcakeStop logo.

It's a one of a kind gourmet cupcake shop on wheels. Sounds pretty cool to me. I guess I'll have to add this to my "to do" list.

posted by Nicole Friday for the Cupcake Craze

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Cupcakes, boxed or not

Really, I have nothing against Duncan Hines, Pillsbury or even Mrs. Betty Crocker. How could I? Growing up that's all we knew! Long before cupcakes were referred to as chic and sophisticated with pristine pastel exteriors, there was super moist, moist deluxe and moist supreme classic yellow cake mix. Later came triple chocolate fudge and red velvet. It's impossible to forget licking the mixer sticks or the bowl to a likeness of "Mr. Clean", as if the raw batter was an appetizer to the ready-made cake entree. I mean really how could I have something against the mix box legends.

Nowadays, with bakeries like Crumbs, Sprinkles or Magnolia's, dare I catch a sale of three boxes for $1.99 at Shoprite (just add water, vegetable oil and three eggs)- Ugh!! Perhaps in disguise. In my house believe it or not, this is actually a topic of conversation. My husband is still holding onto those childhood birthday party dreams of moms homemade cupcakes, not! Again, not that there is anything wrong with a little nostalgia. But you have to ask, didn't he see Carrie Bradshaw (Sex in the City) have an almost orgasmic experience when she inhaled the now famous Magnolia's cupcake. I realize its just his preference, but c'mon people let's expand our palates just a tiny bit. My husbands argument simply stated, "box is better." And, mine is "are you kidding me"?

posted by Nicole Friday for the Cupcake Craze

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Why am I Jonesin' for a cupcake?

I know it's basically impossible to hide the joy of consuming a cupcake, somehow that mischievous smile seems to inevitably creep upon our faces. Could it be that tasty treats come in small packages and size really doesn't matter? With cupcakes, of course. Or perhaps it's the knowledge that underneath their immaculate exteriors lies a sinfully decadent experience beyond our wildest bake sale dreams. I don't really know. But they are delightfully irresistible. And, so much to choose from cupcakes are everywhere it's nearly impossible to avoid them-in the mall, downtown, street fair, department store and now even Starbucks, dare I have a grande caffe latte without the complimented side of a cupcake. Not a chance.
So I ask myself why am I Jonesin' for a cupcake again?
posted by Nicole Friday for the Cupcake Craze

What's more gratifying than cupcakes?

Sweet, cute and oh-so innocent in a small package of delicious fun. What's not to love about cupcakes? There are few things in life simply as gratifying, perhaps one or two. We'll talk about that another day!! The cupcake by my definition is a miniature-sized cake with a whole lot of potential. Swirled and sprinkled, dipped and glazed, piped and topped or not! Definitely have it your way. They come in vanilla, chocolate, lemon, carrot, coconut - flavors aplenty. But, I can't deny it there is something really satisfying about peeling away that paper lining ever so gently, as not to crumble the moist tender surprise awaiting my bite. Well, when it's put that way- I think now is a good time to revisit my first thought- are there really more than a few things in life more gratifying? Hmmm, I'll have to get back to you on that one. In the meantime, indulge yourself!!

posted by Nicole Friday for the Cupcake Craze

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

A tiny taste of childhood

Obsessed? Perhaps. Junkie? Maybe. Simply Delicious? DEFINITELY.

A star is re-born. Reminiscent of the good ole’ days when cupcakes were just for kids. Well, no more. The cupcake has clearly broken its sprinkles ceiling. It’s trendy, sophisticated and all grown up. The red velvet cupcake, the coconut cupcake, the key lime cupcake and of course, the ooh la la cupcake. Right now, the love of my life is the chocolate mocha chip. What a delight. I make no apologies for my love affair. So pleasure yourself. And, why not? Close your eyes and indulge in a tiny taste of childhood. After all, we all want to be a cupcakes R’us kid.
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