Red Wine Cupcakes {Holiday Recipe Club}

This is the fourth installment for the Holiday Recipe Club. Interested in joining? Contact me here! For this post we were all required to use wines, mascarpone or white chocolate.

This round of holiday recipes was intended to be New Year’s focused. And what is New Year’s Eve with out  a little decadence?

So after thinking about which ingredient I wanted to use and what I might want to make, I decided on red wine cupcakes.

My appreciation for wine has grown over the past few months and I was happy I had found a way to incorporate it into something baked.

I made cupcakes because I thought they would be easy, and not too time consuming before heading to a NYE party. (To make it even easier, make mini cupcakes!)

red wine cupcake w letters Red Wine Cupcakes {Holiday Recipe Club}

I made a dozen medium sized cupcakes and found the flavor to be too much for a cupcake of that size. Mini cupcakes are the way to go. 

When you are shopping for a wine to use for your cupcakes I recommend you pick something you would normally enjoy drinking.

I used a wine I didn’t like very much and wasn’t happy with my cupcakes. Next time I make these I plan on using a Zinfandel or Petite Shiraz. [Read more...]

My Second Guest Post at MadAboutMacarons.com & Chocolate Buttercream

As many of you know there is a huge royal event that has captured the attention of people world wide. To celebrate that event Jill at MadAboutMacarons.com has created some amazing macarons, and allowed me to do a second guest post for her.

This post includes my recipe for organic blueberry curd to fill your delicious blueberry macarons with. Please stop by and check them out, they are so beautiful and elegant.

You will love the blueberry twist on a classic curd. As Jill mentions in the post, blueberries are very healthy! Packed with antioxidants and tons of flavor, this blueberry curd is bound to become a favorite.

It’s also great in place of jelly on pb&j’s!

And now for the recipe….

I thought I would join in on the macaron fun and make my second batch ever. I recently bought Jill’s book, Mad About Macarons, and I have been dying to make some.

In honor of love, I went with the chocolate shells and filled them with a chocolate buttercream.

on their side My Second Guest Post at MadAboutMacarons.com & Chocolate Buttercream

I’m sorry to say I will not be sharing Jill’s macaron recipe with you, but I will give you the recipe I used to make the delicious chocolate macaron filling.

This frosting is very rich and chocolaty, which I thought was perfect for the macarons. But if you prefer less chocolate, just reduce the amount of cocoa powder used.

a line of 3 My Second Guest Post at MadAboutMacarons.com & Chocolate Buttercream stack of 3 My Second Guest Post at MadAboutMacarons.com & Chocolate Buttercream

the lone mac My Second Guest Post at MadAboutMacarons.com & Chocolate Buttercream

Don’t forget to stop by MadAboutMacarons.com and leave Jill a comment! Also, if you are interested in joining in on the royal wedding fun, make your own royal inspired macarons and e-mail them to Jill by May 1st!

How to Make a Gingerbread House: Part 2

This is the 2nd of my 3 part series on how to make a gingerbread house. Don’t forget to subscribe to my RSS feed to follow up on the series!

To continue on in the gingerbread house journey, I decided that I wanted to make my own royal icing.

I had never done it before, but royal icing seemed like the best choice for assembling a gingerbread house.

I made a trip to Sur la Table and picked up some cookie cutters, meringue powder, food coloring (in gel form), decorating tips, 1 nice pastry bag, and a box of plastic decorating bags.

decorating tools1 How to Make a Gingerbread House: Part 2

When I was in high school I worked at a cookie store in the mall called Blondie’s.

Blondie’s was the first place I learned how to make gourmet cookies, decorate cookies/cookie cakes using pastry bags and tips plus all sorts of colored sugars and sprinkles. It was so fun!

But surprisingly we never used royal icing to decorate our cookies. All we had was this super thick (and delicious!!) buttercream. I was a bit nervous to try the new frosting, but it was well worth the effort.

Royal icing is simply a very hard white icing, made from softly beaten egg whites and powdered sugar.

royal icing  How to Make a Gingerbread House: Part 2

In my case, I used a nifty little ingredient called meringue powder. I had never used it before, but I have been hearing about it on other blogs. So I went with this method.

I also like that you could safely eat the icing with out running the risk of consuming raw eggs.

This recipe is easy to adjust if you need your icing to be more, or less fluid. They meringue powder came with a list of other recipes for different frostings that I can’t wait to try!

royal icing bags How to Make a Gingerbread House: Part 2 [Read more...]

Spiced Cream Cheese Frosting

If you are looking for a cream cheese frosting, you have found a winner. It’s pretty much the only one you’ll need all Fall.

My cream cheese frosting is spiced with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cardamom. Other good things to add: orange zest, cloves, vanilla beans (or extract), or sea salt.

This makes a fabulous addition to muffins, cookies, quick breads, cupcakes, layer cakes, cinnamon rolls, brownies or straight up on a spoon.

Another great thing about this recipe – you can add 7-10 oz of marshmallow fluff to it and use it as a whoopie pie filling! Seriously, the possibilities are endless.

Filled Pumpkin Whoopie Spiced Cream Cheese Frosting [Read more...]

Strawberry Frosting Recipe

This frosting is surprisingly addicting.

I was worried the fresh strawberries would have a negative effect on the sugar and butter, but it is delicious.

And besides being delicious, it is so fast and easy!

This is the frosting recipe I used for my sister’s 16th birthday strawberry cupcakes. They were a huge hit!

I imagine this recipe would be good on just about any cupcake, cake or cookie you can think of. If you experiment with flavor combinations leave me a comment or e-mail me about it!

Strawberry Frosting PICNIK Strawberry Frosting Recipe [Read more...]