Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Whoopie Pie Cupcakes

For this entry I’d like the pictures to do most of the talking!
I made these luscious birthday cupcakes for my close friend and calorie blasting spin instructor - Raphy!
..I know..GASP! I bring cupcakes and cookies to spin class quite often. And yes, almost every time another student in class tells me “how mean I am”..or “OMG that is sooo not nice of you!?..waaaw waaaw waaaw..My bad, thought I’d share my treats and love with others!? I mean isn’t this why we go to spin/the gym…for a state of well being, and to indulge and not feel bad about it?
Anywho..two of Raphy’s favorites, are whoopie pies and anything chocolate!

So fellow foodies..I give you..Whoopie Pie Cupcakes!
Cupcakes with a dollop of marshmallow frosting, topped with a cookie..YES PLEASE!
I know I have said a few times on here...that these cookies… or …these cupcakes are my favorite; but these are my #1 followed by my champagne cupcakes!!!

For the cupcakes and cookie tops:
2 1/4 cups flour
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons cream of tartar (I didn’t have any) shh!
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup butter
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup milk

For the filling:
1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
1 1/2 cups marshmallow fluff
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare two baking sheets: one muffin tin and one cookie tray. Line the muffin tin with cupcake liners, and the cookie tray with a sheet of parchment.
2. Sift together the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt into a medium-sized mixing bowl. Set aside.-again I didn’t have this ingredient. So it is safe to leave out if you don’t either!
3. With an electric mixer, cream the butter, eggs, and vanilla together in a large mixing bowl until light and lemon-hued. Add the dry ingredients bit by bit, alternating with the milk until your batter is smooth.
4. Using either a cookie scoop or by heaping teaspoons, drop 12 rounds of cookie dough on the cookie sheet, leaving about an inch and a half around each mound of dough. Try to size them so that they are slightly smaller than the circumference of the cupcake cups you are using.
5. With the remaining cookie dough, fill the cupcake cups. This should be enough batter to fill each cupcake cup about 2/3 full.
6.  Bake until lightly browned around the edges (these are a lighter cocoa color than some whoopie pies so you will see light browning). For the cookie tops, this will be 8-10 minutes; for the cupcakes, this will be about 15-20 minutes (a toothpick inserted in the cake should come out clean). I baked both at the same time, simply taking out the tops sooner and leaving the cupcakes to bake a bit longer.
7. Let the cupcakes and cookie tops cool completely.
8. For the filling, just whip together the butter, marshmallow fluff and vanilla! Voila!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Chocolate Chip Muffins!

I recently attended a birthday party for one of Tyler’s nephew’s.
The cute little thing was turning 3, with a party including a moon bounce, a petting zoo, a build a bear stand, and a food truck!
I am not really sure what little kids are into these days, and with a birthday party like this I had no clue what to bring as a present.
I asked the mother, and she said that he really doesn’t need anything, but if I did bring something, it should be small.
I could have brought a toy truck perhaps, but I thought a greater gift would be the gift of breakfast!
Give the parents a break and bake muffins for the family to have for the week!
I decided to bake chocolate chip muffins, since they are sweet and simple, and what kid doesn’t like chocolate?

2 cups all-purpose flour 
2 teaspoons baking powder 
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup sugar  
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips  

Makes 12 muffins
Preheat an oven to 350°F. Line a 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners.
In a bowl, whisk together the melted butter, buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla until smooth.
In another bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
Make a well in the center of the flour mixture, add the buttermilk mixture, and beat until smooth and well mixed, 1-2 minutes. Using a spatula, fold in the chocolate chips just until evenly distributed. Do not overmix. 
Spoon the batter into each muffin cup, filing it level with the rim.
Bake muffins until golden, dry, and springy to touch, 20-25 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin should come out clean. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool for 5 minutes