Friday, January 25, 2013

Browned Butter Cupcakes with Fig Swiss Meringue Buttercream and Fig Filling

Did I totally miss my blogiversary? Yes, yes I did. Gawd! I'm like a man! It's been two years since I started this little blog and I totally missed it. Does it count that I made these totally awesome cupcakes a week later? Well it should because these cupcakes are definitely worthy. They smell so delicious even before they bake because of the browned butter. I actually ended up creating this recipe on accident.

You see I attempted to make my very first batch of macarons. Unfortunately, I have not perfected the technique yet. I need more practice. You can see large grains of the almond flour in the cookie. They tasted wonderful though.

I used the italian method. Check out my fail and let me know if you have any tips.

So...I had whipped up a batch of amazingly delicious fig butter swiss meringue buttercream and had quite a bit left I had to do something with it....I couldn't just eat it out of the container off the I do that just seemed destined for better somehow.

So I came up with these...your're welcome.

Browned Butter Cupcakes with Fig Swiss Meringue Buttercream and Fig Filling

1/2 cup browned butter
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup brown sugar
3 eggs
1 1/4 cups cake flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1.  Pour glass of wine, set aside for yourself. Baking with a glass of your favorite beverage always makes it better.

2.  First brown the butter in a small sauce pan. (I started on low and gradually raised the temperature little by little, swirling occasionally, until the milk solids started to turn brown and it started to smell nutty.)

3.  Then place the browned butter in an ice water bath. (You can do this early and let it cool completely on the stove or use a water bath, which ever you prefer. I let it cool in an ice bath in the sink and let it sit there while I got everything together and preheated the oven.)

3.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare baking tin with cupcake liners.

4.  In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the browned butter, vegetable oil, and brown sugar together until light and fluffy.

5.  Beat the eggs in one at a time then scrape down the bowl. Add the vanilla, milk and mix. Then add the cake flour and baking powder.

6.  Mix until batter is smooth. Then pour evenly (I used a ¼ cup measure) into prepared cupcake tin. Bake for 12-17 minutes until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the middle comes out clean. (In my oven, mine came out perfect at 15 minutes)

7.  Let cool in pan for 5 minutes before removing them and letting them cool completely on wire rack.

1/2 cup or so Fig Butter (I used Trader Joe’s)
Slash of apple juice

1.  Core the middle of the cupcake out to make room for the filling. (I used my nifty cupcake corer, love it, but you can also just use a paring knife.)

2.  Add a splash of apple juice to the fig butter to thin it out just a tad and then put it in a large ziplock bag and snip off the corner of the bag to just pipe in the filling.

5 large fresh egg whites (150 g)
1-1/4 cup (250 g) superfine granulated sugar
1-1/2 cups (340 g) (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened, cut into cubes
2 teaspoons (10 ml) pure vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
1/4 + 1/8 cups fig butter (I used Trader Joe’s)

1.  Add egg whites and sugar, and simmer over a pot of water (not boiling), whisking constantly but gently, until temperature reaches 160°F, or if you don't have a candy thermometer, until the sugar has completely dissolved and the egg whites are hot.

2.  Place bowl back on mixer and fit with whisk attachment. Whip until the meringue is thick, glossy, and the bottom of the bowl feels neutral to the touch (this can take up to 10 minutes, or longer).

3.  Switch over to paddle attachment and, with mixer on low speed, add softened butter in chunks until incorporated, and mix until it has reached a silky smooth texture (if curdles, keep mixing and it will come back to smooth).

4. Add vanilla, salt, and fig butter and continuing to beat on low speed until well combined.

Swiss Meringue Buttercream Recipe reprinted from Sweetapolita

Friday, January 18, 2013

Mint Chocolate Irish Cream Cookies

So now that it's a fresh new year, I have no motivation.

Except to eat more cookies like these.

Let me tell you guys just how bad my motivation has been lately. I experienced something this morning that I haven't done since, oh I don't know, junior high. It all starts with the fact that I can't even make myself go to bed at night. I sit on the couch and keep busy on my iPad or catch up on my shows (so happy Downton Abby is back on) until I literally fall asleep on the couch. Sometimes it's just a quick thirty minute to an hour that I'm asleep before I get up and put myself to bed and then there are times I'll wake up at four in the morning before I make it to the bedroom. Usually I'm pretty good at getting up in the morning and going to my grown up job, but all good things must come to an end. Last night I took my usual nightly nap on the couch, only for about an hour, but this time I forgot to set my alarm! (Oh the horror!) Have you ever shot up out of bed just knowing you were already late? It's terrible isn't it? That oh my god, oh my god, I slept in feeling. I swear I ran back and forth at the foot of the bed about ten times trying to get my bearings and figure out what to do. I threw on some clothes, brushed my teeth, smeared on some makeup, and tried to make my birds nest of a hair do look halfway decent, to no avail. Believe it or not I actually got to work in the nick time. My punishment, having to drink the bitter nastiness they call coffee and having to face the morning in a zombie like coma. Luckily I survived the day and decided to bake cookies and drink wine to make myself feel better. Even better the cookies have liqueur in them too. 

If you are wanting a comforting hug at the end of a long tiring day, these cookies are for you. The hint of mint and irish cream soothes you just like a warm after dinner drink with a shot of Bailey's. Try em out. :)

Mint Chocolate Irish Cream Cookies

1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter (room temperature)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup Irish Cream (I used Bailey’s Chocolate Mint Irish Cream, but any flavor will work)
1/4 cup Andes crème de menthe baking chips
1/4 cup chocolate chips

1.  In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt.

2.  In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment cream together butter and sugar until pale, then add the egg and vanilla and beat until light and fluffy, then with the mixer still on drizzle in the irish cream. Scrape down sides to make sure all is incorporated.

3.  Then add flour mixture and mix on low until just combined, and then stir in Andes baking chips and chocolate chips.

4.  At this point I stash them in the fridge to get a chill on them while I clean up and preheat the oven and prepare the baking sheets.

5.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking sheet with parchment paper or silicon baking mat. Place tablespoons of dough on the baking sheet leaving enough room for spreading. I use a small cookie scoop. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, just until they start to brown around the edges.

6.  Cool on sheet for 5 minutes then transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.

Store uneaten cookies (yeah, like that ever happens) in an air tight container. ;) Enjoy

Friday, January 4, 2013

Happy New Year!

Finally! All that hustle and bustle of the holidays is over and we can chill out and relax a bit. Now that I don't have a million things to do a day I've been getting to reflect back on the year and really enjoy the memories. 2012 was a great year for me. Full of love, new experiences, and challenges. 

This year I turned 30. 

I married my best friend. 

Took a beautiful vacation to California.

and I ran a 1/2 marathon.

All of which were pretty big for me. I can reflect back and feel like I really lived life well. I can't wait to see what 2013 has in store for me. 

So while I am reflecting back, I wanted to share the top five most popular posts of 2012 with you guys and then I wanted to share my favorite top five recipes (ie: what I couldn't resist stuffing in my face)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...