Friday, May 31, 2013

Spring Sugar Cookies!

I was the type of child that always went for the sugar cookies- you know, those big, fluffy, vanilla ones slathered with brightly colored frosting.... *sigh*  And then I tried making my own sugar cookies- and I can honestly say these taste much better.  :)  Ready for an overload on cuteness?

I thought so.  ;)

 The bees just ended up being soooo cute... and these shapes were pretty east to frost, actually. 

Aren't they adorable??

You'll have to forgive the terrible lighting in the pictures- I had to wait till it was dark outside cause I was just too busy yesterday to take the pictures any earlier.... I really need a resident photographer.  Anyone up for it?  ;D

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Bacon Brown Sugar Cupcakes

I thought bacon could never get better.  I mean, how does one improve a hot, crisp, thick, delicious, piece of bacon?  

I was wrong.  CANDY THE BACON!!!!!  Now bacon will NEVER be the same.  It melts in your mouth.... the sweet bacon goodness that makes you want to cram the whole pound in your mouth.  Seriously.  It's that amazing.  Don't believe me?  Fine.  I'd be happy to eat your share too.  :D

That, and I'd always been skeptical about the whole bacon cupcake craze thing.  I mean, who wants to ruin a perfectly good cupcake by putting bacon on it, which is already heavenly by its self?  

Wrong again.  *sigh*  But hey, at least it was wrong in an amazing way.  

Although I'm still skeptical about the whole bacon chocolate thing, I was ready (although rather worried it wouldn't meet my expectations) for a brown sugar cupcake frosted with brown sugar buttercream, topped with candied bacon and drizzled with maple sirup.  I figured it couldn't be that bad.  I was wrong.  They were amazing.  

Bacon Brown Sugar Cupcakes

Brown Sugar Cupcakes 
makes 15 cupcakes

1 cup loosely packed brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt, stirring to mix. Set aside. Line a cupcake tin with liners.
In a large bowl, whisk brown sugar and egg until smooth. Add in vanilla extract and milk, again mixing until combined. Slowly pour in melted butter, continuing to whisk. Add in the flour, soda and salt, mixing with a large spoon until batter is smooth.
Using a 1/4 cup measure, add batter to liners. Bake for 16-19 minutes, or until tops are puffy and golden, and don’t jiggle when touched. Let cool completely.

Brown Sugar Frosting

3 sticks unsalted butter, room temp.
3/4 c. light brown sugar, packed
1 lb. box powdered sugar
3 TBSP milk
2  1/2 tsp vanilla

Cream the butter and brown sugar with the paddle attachment until fluffy.  Add in the powdered sugar and beat on low until incorporated, then increase the speed and beat until smooth and combined.  Add the salt, milk and vanilla; blend until smooth.  Frost the cupcakes.

Candied Bacon

Preheat oven to 375.  Toss together 1/4 cup dark brown sugar and 1 1/4 tsp. cinnamon in a large bowl.  Add 1 lb bacon, toss to evenly coat. 
Line a half sheet pan with foil, place rack on top.  Lay bacon out on rack, cook, turning once after 10 minutes.  Bake for another 10 minutes, or longer if necessary (you want the bacon more on the overdone rather than underdone side, so it is crisp).

Top cupcakes with several short lengths of bacon, and drizzle with maple sirup.  

Monday, May 27, 2013

Chocolate Raspberry Cupcake Photoshoot!

Guess what??

I had a photoshoot with a dear friend!  But not just any photoshoot- a cupcake photoshoot.  Cause I'm just weird like that.  We went over to the Yen's house for a lovely afternoon- we always have a blast together.  :)  Anyhow, here's some of the pictures that Kathryn took- there were so many amazing photos that it was hard to pick just a few to post!  Kathryn is my favoritest photographer ever, (you need to look at her blog!!) and I'm sure once you see these you'll have to agree with me..... 

Oh, and these were taken before we got dumped into their pond.... but that's a story for another day.  Let's just say it was one of the funniest things that has happened for a while.  :D

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

A New Cookbook!!!!

So... I got this cookbook the other day.  I've been drooling over the library one for months now, and so you can only image how happy I was to receive it for my birthday!!  It's a lovely, nice, thick heavy cookbook, too, not the thin flimsy ones that you're done reading through in half an hour..... I've sat and looked at it for over an hour, and I've still not read it all!!!  (this is coming from the girl that will  literally sit for hours reading cookbooks.... ) 

There are so many beautiful pictures, and there are several recipes I really want to try (macaroons, anyone?), so I can't wait till life slows down a little so I can do some fun baking!!  Oh, and I'm really really really really hoping I can go to visit one of the actual bakeries in CA.... If I do end up being able to go visit some dear friends in CA!  But we'll have to see.  There's also this ice cream shop that I want to go visit too.... but I'll have to tell y'all about that next time!!  Needless to say, why are all the bakeries and fun food places in CA???  

Monday, May 6, 2013