In non-food related news, I want to warn you that Alex is brewing his own beer, which he is extremely excited about. It's cute, he even is stealing beer bottles from parties etc. so that he has a place to store his beloved brew. The first batch is almost fully mature. We tried some tonight, its a bit under carbonated but it is begining to taste like beer.
See? How cute is all that beer just sittin' in the closet? Not to worry, it doesn't smell (thank god!) so all the clothes are safe.
In other news, my dad is turning fifty and we just had a big old party for him last night. Alex and I were in charge of making the cupcakes so we figured we would try a few things out. We made Molly Wizenbergs chocolate cake and turned them into cupcakes which were delicious but not really appropriate for the mega frosting presentation that my dad prefers. That man LOVES frosting. The cake was so light and flavorful that we could not bear to slather all of our (home made) peanut butter frosting on top of them so, they are now sitting in the freezer waiting to be eaten with some whipped cream. Because we were running out of time we were reduced to using a box mix for the chocolate cupcakes. I know!! for shame, but they were alright, we added vanilla and some chopped chocolate to boost the flavor a bit. It was for the best though because they were perfect for that frosting, and I don't think that all of the drunk fifty year olds would have appreciated the other cupcakes.
Back to the whole point, though we ended up cooking a slightly sadistic amount on Friday, our major triumph was the vanilla cupcakes we made from a recipe out of the Everyday Gourmet cookbook. These cupcakes were the perfect texture, light and buttery, but just hearty enough to be frosted without being overpowered by all that gooey goodness. Best of all they were not too sweet, a complaint I generally have about vanilla cupcakes. These actually tasted like vanilla and butter not just sugar. Huzzah for Gourmet!! There are about four of these sitting in my fridge right now in a Tupperware just waiting to be eaten. Life is looking pretty good right now!
Anyhow, the cupcakes went over well. The party was 60's themed so we frosted them and piped some brightly colored peace signs on top and they were totally far out. I did make one cardinal mistake however. I frosted the cupcakes at the apartment and then transported them over to my Dad's house. What was I thinking!!! oohh so many became so sad looking with droopy frosting. But luckily we had enough that survived the trip. Note to self: ALWAYS frost the cupcakes as close to serving time as possible!
Gourmet Today-Edited by Ruth Reichl
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tbl baking powder
- 1 and 3/4 teaspoons salt
- 3 sticks of softened unsalted butter
- 1 and 3/4 cups sugar
- 4 large eggs left at room temp for 30 min
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 and 1/2 cups whole milk
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and line your muffin tins with liners.
Sift together the flour, baking power and salt in a med size bowl and set aside
In a large bowl beat together the butter and sugar with an electric mixer set to med-high. Once the butter and sugar have combined to be light and fluffy add the eggs one at a time, beading after each.
Once the eggs have been Incorporated add the vanilla, then reduce the speed of the mixture and add the flour and milk in three batches alternating between the flour and the milk.
Ladle or pour the butter into the muffin tins and place in the oven for 18-22 minutes. Once they are finished (a toothpick inserted into the middle should come out clean) remove from the oven and allow to cool entirely before frosting.