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Archive for the ‘Chocolate’ Category

054These cupcakes have been in my brain for quite some time now, and I thought they would be a perfect opportunity to try out a new frosting that I’ve been wanting to try: Swiss meringue buttercream!  I’ve heard horror stories about how you can break the emulsion and that to make this frosting correctly, you need a stand mixer.  I do not have a stand mixer, and I was sure I could do it without one.  I mean, the Swiss didn’t wait around for the invention of the stand mixer – or even electricity – to develop the frosting, I bet.  In the end, the frosting was successful, and is now one of my new favorites :)

I, once again, used a past recipe for the cupcake batter.  If you’d like to see step-by-step pictures of the batter-making process, see the original post (linked below):

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048There’s not much of a back story to these cupcakes.  Blackberries were on sale at my local market, and I wanted to use them to top a cupcake.  I utilized an almond cupcake recipe I’ve used before, and tried out a new way to do buttercream (inspired by my foray into vegan baking) that uses shortening as well as butter.  I’m really pleased with it and I think I’ll be using that combo for all of my buttercreams from now on!  I did a simple 1-1 ratio, and it turned out well.  I will say that with just using cocoa powder, the frosting tasted very much like milk chocolate.  Next time, I’ll try using some melted bitter-sweet chocolate to give it more depth of flavor.  All in all, a very good cupcake!

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170It has finally happened – the San Francisco 49ers have prevailed and will be playing in the Super Bowl this Sunday!  My father has claimed that his children have always brought the 49ers luck.  A month after my brother was born, our boys won their first national championship.  Just 15 days after I was born, they won their second.  They have been undefeated since then in their five Super Bowl games.  I am just hoping with all hope that this Sunday they can make it six!

To celebrate, I have developed a deep, rich, and tangy cupcake to show my love for my team.  I am borrowing my all-time favorite chocolate cupcake recipe (developed for a Super Bowl party three years ago), filling it with tangy and boozey cherries, with a topping of red and gold pride in the form of a rich cream cheese frosting.  Start the cherry filling a few days ahead so the cherries can reach full re-hydration and flavor.

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Believe it or not, the s’mores cupcake was the first cupcake I ever “developed” over 3 years ago.  I’ve made it dozens of times, and it’s a friend and family favorite.  How it has never gotten its own post, I don’t know!  The unfortunate part is that none of its components are new to Cupcake Villains.  I used to use a boxed cake mix for the chocolate cupcake, but I’ve since then upgraded to my Decadent Chocolate recipe.  I use a marshmallow frosting recipe that has been featured in such favorites as the Rocky Road  cupcakes.  I didn’t want to beat a dead horse, so if you’d like to see pictures of the process for making either of these, click on the original post. (more…)

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I made a batch of Dark Chocolate Cupcakes, to be featured in my next post, and had some leftover batter. This resulted in a dozen or so mini-cupcakes.  I didn’t want to do the same exact cupcake as my main batch, so I improvised with what was lying around!  For me, that’s alcohol :)  And so was born the ruby port buttercream frosting!

Ruby Port Buttercream Frosting

1/2 c. butter, room temp.

3 c. powdered sugar

3 tbsp. ruby port

Approach this like any other buttercream: beat the butter until soft and creamy, slowly add in the powdered sugar, then the port, until you reach a desired flavor and consistency.  Both the powdered sugar and port are “give or take” measurements and can be adjusted to reflect your own personal tastes.

The color turned out to be a very pale pink.  If you want to make more of a statement, feel free to play with food coloring that may reflect a more port-like visual appeal!

Pipe onto cupcakes and enjoy!  I would suggest serving the cupcakes with the same port with which you made the frosting.

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Mels goes vegan baker! Thanks to Sadie for her comment, flavor inspiration, and push into baking, vegan style :)  These cupcakes were really fun to make, and I especially enjoyed the frosting/caramel combo with the sea salt!  Have fun with these and try out different decorating techniques.

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Irish Car Bomb Cupcake

When Gibbs and I announced on Facebook (friend us there!) that we would be returning to the land of cupcakes, a friend of mine suggested that I make a cupcake version of the Irish Car Bomb.  While I don’t necessarily agree with the connotations of this drink’s name (thank you Professor Crowley for my favorite undergrad class – Culture in Conflict: Ireland), it does involve tasty, tasty ingredients!  While I am using Guinness, Jameson Irish Whiskey, and Baileys Irish Cream – yes, I do have all of these on hand – you can substitute any brand stout, whiskey and Irish cream if needed.

 

Here they are, just in time for St. Patrick’s Day! :)

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