SLC First Year Anniversary

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I am super excited and honoured to be asked by my University to provide them with tasty treats for the SLC’s first year anniversary party (and for all you school friends, it’s today from 1pm-5pm!)

I made two large 12″ four layered chocolate and vanilla cakes. One was covered in vanilla white fondant, decorated with the SLC logo on top, along with the text “SLC First Year Anniversary” and “#RSLC”. Around the outside of the cake, I included the SLC frit pattern to resemble the actual building on campus. More pictures are down below! 😀

On the second cake, I decorated it with roses in the University colours. Alongside the two cakes, I baked 84 red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting (in the colours of the University, to match the rose cake). Five of those cupcakes are decorated with the SLC’s stakeholders logos: SLC, RULA, Launch Zone, DME and Student Learning Support.

I had a long day of baking yesterday to prepare for today’s event, but I had a very fun time doing this. I am honoured to be apart of this event, and super excited they were willing to support my business. Thank you SLC! Enjoy your party!

If you would like to see all the recipes I used for my cakes, cupcakes and buttercreams – they are all listed down below.

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Chocolate Cake

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1½ teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder
  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350º F. Prepare two 9-inch cake pans by spraying with baking spray or buttering and lightly flouring.
  2. Add flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, salt and espresso powder to a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Whisk through to combine or, using your paddle attachment, stir through flour mixture until combined well.
  3. Add milk, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla to flour mixture and mix together on medium speed until well combined. Reduce speed and carefully add boiling water to the cake batter. Beat on high speed for about 1 minute to add air to the batter.
  4. Distribute cake batter evenly between the two prepared cake pans. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 10 minutes, remove from the pan and cool completely.

Vanilla Cake

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 1/4 cup milk

Directions:

  1. With the rack in the middle position, preheat the oven to 180 °C (350 °F). Butter two 20-cm (8-inch) springform pans and line the bottom with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. In a bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  3. In another bowl, beat the eggs, sugar, and vanilla with an electric mixer for about 10 minutes or until thick, pale and triple in volume. Drizzle in the oil while beating.
  4. At low speed, add the dry ingredients alternately with the milk until the batter is smooth. Divide the batter into the pans and bake for 50 to 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean. Let cool for 15 minutes. Remove from the pans and let completely cool on a wire rack.

Vanilla Buttercream

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract
  • 4 cups sifted icing sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of milk*

Directions:

  1. In large bowl, beat shortening and butter with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla.
  2. Gradually add icing sugar, one cup at a time, beating well on medium speed. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl often. When all sugar has been mixed in, icing will appear dry.
  3. Gradually add milk; beat at medium speed until light and fluffy.

Red Velvet Cupcakes

(makes about 28 cupcakes)

Ingredients:

  • 2 and 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 8 teaspoons natural unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup canola or vegetable oil
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature and separated
  • 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
  • liquid or gel red food colouring
  • 1 cup (120ml) buttermilk, room temperature

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Line two 12-cup muffin pans with cupcake liners.
  2. Sift the flour and cornstarch together to make sure it is evenly combined. Whisk this, along with baking soda, cocoa powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  3. Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on high speed until smooth and creamy – about 1 minute. Add the sugar and beat on high speed for 2 minutes until creamed together fairly well. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Add the oil and beat on high for 2 minutes. The butter may look “piece-y” and not completely combine with the oil. This is normal and ok.
  4. Add two egg yolks and the vanilla. (Set the egg whites aside.) Beat on medium-high speed until combined. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Beat in the vinegar and the food colouring– until you reach your desired colour. I use 2 Tablespoons. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients in three additions alternating with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients, and mixing each addition just until incorporated. Do not over mix. Whisk or beat the 2 egg whites until thick and foamy, about 3 minutes. Fold into cupcake batter with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon. The batter will be silky and slightly thick.
  5. Spoon batter into cupcake liners filling 1/2 – 2/3 of the way full. Bake for 20-21 minutes or until the tops of the cupcakes spring back when gently touched and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Don’t over bake; your cupcakes will dry out. Allow to cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.

Cream Cheese Buttercream

Ingredients:

  • 2 packages of cream cheese, softened (8oz each)
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • cups icing sugar
  • 1 tablespoon milk (if desired)

Directions:

  1. In bowl, beat cream cheese with butter. Beat in sugar in 2 additions until smooth. Add milk if icing is too thick.
Advertisement

70th Birthday Cake

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My uncle John celebrated his 70th birthday this past week, meaning I was in charge of making him is favourite kind of cake: lemon.

Now I don’t know about most people, but typically vanilla or chocolate is the go-to cake flavour, and not so much lemon. My family doesn’t typically enjoy the taste of lemon cake – I mean they’ll eat it because its cake (hehe), especially when its covered in buttercream to help cancel out that lemon taste in your mouth, but it’s definitely not their favourite.

But it doesn’t matter what the majority of people like in my family, it was John’s birthday and he wanted lemon! So there!

I knew I wanted to spice it up (not actually add spice… because ew) but I wanted to add a little extra flavour in the cake to make it more delicious. I decided to make a raspberry filling, that I would layer in-between the layers along with my vanilla buttercream.

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Lemon Cake

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (250 mL) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups (500 mL) granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) grated lemon zest
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) vanilla
  • 3 cups (750 mL) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) baking powder
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt
  • 1-2/3 cups (400 mL) milk
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) lemon juice

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, beat butter with sugar until fluffy. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time; beat in lemon zest and vanilla.
  2. Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; stir into butter mixture alternately with milk, making 3 additions of flour mixture and 2 of milk.
  3. Gently fold in lemon juice to make curdled-looking batter.
  4. Divide between 2 greased and parchment paper–lined 9-inch (1.5 L) round cake pans.
  5. Bake in 350ºF (180ºC) oven until cake tester inserted in centre comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes.
  6. Let cool in pans on rack for 10 minutes; transfer to rack and let cool completely.

Raspberry Filling

Ingredients:

  • 1 package (16oz) of frozen raspberries
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice

Directions:

  1. Drain raspberries, reserving liquid.
  2. Add enough water to liquid to equal 1 1/4 cups.
  3. In large saucepan, combine liquid, sugar, cornstarch and lemon juice; mix well.
  4. Heat and stir until mixture boils and thickens. Cool completely.
  5. Stir thawed raspberries into cooled mixture.

Vanilla Buttercream

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract
  • 4 cups sifted icing sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of milk

Directions:

  1. In large bowl, beat shortening and butter with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla.
  2. Gradually add icing sugar, one cup at a time, beating well on medium speed. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl often. When all sugar has been mixed in, icing will appear dry.
  3. Gradually add milk; beat at medium speed until light and fluffy.

If you want to follow exactly the way I made this cake, here are the steps listed below:

  1. I sliced my two cakes in half, leaving me with 4 layers.
  2. I placed my first cake layer on the cake board, and added a layer of my vanilla buttercream, followed with a thin layer of the raspberry filling (you don’t want to add a thick layer of the raspberry filling, because remember by the end you will have 3 layers of the raspberry filling, so you don’t want it to be over-powering because it is quite sweet tasting).
  3. Next, I added another cake layer and repeated the same steps, until I used up all my cake layers.
  4. Once all my cake layers were stacked, with the two fillings in-between, I added a crumb coat** of buttercream around the outside.
  5. I placed it in the freezer for 20 minutes to allow it to harden really well. Typically, I will set it in the freezer for 10 minutes (doesn’t need to be too long) but because there was raspberry filling coming out the sides when I did the crumb coat, I wanted to make sure the raspberry filling was locked in tight. You want to avoid any raspberry poking through your final layer of buttercream (unless you want to achieve that look! It would be very pretty, but considering this cake was for a man… I decided pink was not his colour, hehe).

** A crumb coat is a thin layer of buttercream around the outside of the cake, to lock in any crumbs so they don’t get into your final layer of buttercream.

Lastly, I cut out a 7 and a 0 and placed them on top of the cake, to allow me to sprinkle around the numbers leaving the numbers clean and white when I removed the stencil. Buttercream can start to stiff up relatively quickly, so you want to move fast after you buttercream the top of the cake.

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Vanilla and Chocolate Cupcakes

First off – Happy New Year!!! A little late in the game, but better late than never! I hope everyone had a wonderful new years, filled with delicious food, drinks and many laughs.

Many people have asked me, “What’s your new years resolution?” and honestly I hadn’t really thought about it. I’m not one who loves making resolutions for the new year, let alone being successful at keeping them.

When I really thought about the top three things I want to make happen in the new year, they would be:

  1. Be more experimental with baking. Finally cross all the things off my baking bucket list, that I created three years ago and still haven’t completed half.
  2. Play more board games. Because why the heck not.
  3. Stop being such a horrific procrastinator and a lazy human being.

What are your resolutions? I’d love to know in the comments below! Maybe they will even inspire me…

 

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Now on to the post – I definitely know I’ve made vanilla and chocolate cupcakes more than anything on else you see here on my blog.

Whether I’ve made them for birthdays… commencements… anniversaries… I have for sure made my fair share of vanilla and chocolate cupcakes. I recently made these cupcakes for a birthday. They are your simple vanilla with vanilla buttercream and chocolate with chocolate buttercream.

I added these cute gold edible pearls and white edible pearls on top, for a little glam and sparkle!

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CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk, room temperature

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C). Line a 12-cup muffin pan with cupcake liners. Line a second pan with 2 liners – this recipe makes about 14 cupcakes. Set aside.
  2. Whisk the cocoa powder, flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together in a large bowl until thoroughly combined. Set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, granulated sugar, brown sugar, oil, and vanilla together until completely smooth. Pour half of the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Then half of the buttermilk. Gently whisk – about 5 stirs. Repeat with the remaining wet ingredients and buttermilk. Stir until just combined; do not overmix.
  4. Pour/spoon the batter into the liners – fill only halfway to avoid spilling over the sides. Bake in batches for 18-21 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Set aside to cool.

CHOCOLATE BUTTERCREAM

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract
  • 4 cups sifted icing sugar
  • 3-4 tablespoons of milk*

Directions:

  1. In large bowl, beat shortening and butter with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla.
  2. Gradually add cocoa powder, beating well on medium speed. Slowly add the icing sugar, one cup at a time. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl often. When both ingredients have been mixed in, icing will appear dry.
  3. Gradually add milk; beat at medium speed until light and fluffy.
  4. For thin (spreading) consistency icing, add 2 tablespoons light corn syrup, water or milk.
  5. For pure white icing (stiff consistency), omit butter; substitute an additional 1/2 cup shortening for butter and add 1/2 teaspoon No-Colour butter flavor. Add up to 4 tablespoons light corn syrup, water or milk to thin for icing cakes.

VANILLA CUPCAKES

(makes about 30)

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup canola oil (or vegetable or extra light olive oil)
  • 1 cup buttermilk

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 °F and line a cupcake/muffin pan with cupcake liners.
    In a medium bowl, whisk together 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1 1/4 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp baking soda and 1/2 tsp salt. Set flour mix aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat 2 eggs with the whisk attachment on medium speed (15-20 seconds).
  3. Add 3/4 cup sugar and continue to beat on medium speed.
  4. Add vanilla and oil and beat on medium speed.
  5. Reduce mixer speed to medium/low and slowly add about half of the flour mixture. Add half of the buttermilk, then the rest of the flour mix and the rest of the milk. Beat until just combined and smooth, scraping down the sides of the mixing bowl. The batter should be thin.
  6. Pour batter into a lined muffin pan. Fill to about 1/2 full.
  7. Bake for 12 -14 minutes. Let them cool in the pan for a couple minutes, then remove.

VANILLA BUTTERCREAM

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract
  • 4 cups sifted icing sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of milk*

Directions:

  1. In large bowl, beat shortening and butter with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla.
  2. Gradually add icing sugar, one cup at a time, beating well on medium speed. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl often. When all sugar has been mixed in, icing will appear dry.
  3. Gradually add milk; beat at medium speed until light and fluffy.
  4. For thin (spreading) consistency icing, add 2 tablespoons light corn syrup, water or milk.
  5. For pure white icing (stiff consistency), omit butter; substitute an additional 1/2 cup shortening for butter and add 1/2 teaspoon No-Colour butter flavor. Add up to 4 tablespoons light corn syrup, water or milk to thin for icing cakes.

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25th Anniversary Pink Ombre Cupcakes

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For a 25th anniversary I was asked to make 40 cupcakes that were the colours of my pink ombre rose cake. 28 of them were to be used to make the number ’25’ but in a pink ombre form (light pink to dark pink. Image is down below!)

I thought that was very clever, and I’ve never done anything like that before! Very cool.

These cupcakes were just vanilla cupcakes with vanilla buttercream frosting (spilt up into 3 bowls for the 3 different shades of pink).

Hope you guys enjoy!

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Fox Cupcakes

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I made these adorable little fox cupcakes for a baby shower. I made 40 of these chocolate cupcakes, and made buttercream to decorate each one. I separated the buttercream into 3 bowls: one white, one copper coloured (I used Wilton’s Copper Food Colouring) and one black coloured.

I first piped on the copper icing for the base of the fox face. I used tip 5, to pipe white area around the face, and then used a spatula to smooth out the buttercream. I also used tip 5 to pipe the black icing for the nose and eyes. I then used tip 352 to pipe the copper icing for the pull-out leaf ears.

I also made a cake to match with these cupcakes, but I will post that tomorrow. Hope you guys enjoy!

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Strawberries and Cream Cake

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My friend at work requested this strawberries and cream cake for his mom, which I was super excited to do because I love making cakes with strawberries on top. I think it’s the most beautiful little touch (especially when you cover them in chocolate!) But for this cake, no chocolate was involved.

I made four layers of vanilla cake, and in between each layer is a layer of strawberry jam, a layer of sliced strawberries and a layer of whipped cream filling.

So I placed one layer of vanilla cake on the bottom, a layer of strawberry jam (I used Smuckers!), a layer of thinly sliced strawberries (1/4 inch or so) and then a layer of whipped cream filling (recipe down below). Then I placed the second layer of cake on top, and repeated the layers until all four layers of cake were stacked.

For decoration, I just made vanilla buttercream and dyed it pink. I piped dollops on top and placed strawberries on each dollop. I then trimmed the top and the bottom with little dots of buttercream.

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Whipped Cream Filling

Ingredients:

  1. 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  2. 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  3. 2 cups heavy cream, divided
  4. 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Whisk the sugar and cornstarch together in a small saucepan and slowly whisk in 1/2 cup of the cream. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes, whisking constantly, until the mixture thickens.
  2. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and let it cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes.
  3. In a large bowl, whip the remaining 1 1/2 cups cream and the vanilla extract together with an electric mixer on low speed until frothy, about 30 seconds. Increase the speed to medium and continue to whip the cream until it looks thickened, about 30 seconds. Slowly add the cooled cornstarch mixture and continue to whip until the cream forms soft peaks, about 2-3 minutes.
  4. Cakes filled with this cream must be refrigerated.

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Ferrero Rocher Cake

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One of my long time co-workers requested a cake for her boyfriend’s birthday. She wanted it to include Ferrero Rocher chocolates on it, which I was SO excited about. Those things are the tastiest things EVER.

This cake was 8″, four layers of chocolate cake, filled with chocolate buttercream, covered in vanilla buttercream, hazelnuts, chocolate ganache and Ferrero Rocher’s on top.

If you’re a big Ferrero Rocher lover (or hazelnut and chocolate lover) I guarantee you’ll LOVE this cake. I also made her 12 Ferrero Rocher cupcakes, which I will post tomorrow.

🙂

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Minion Rose Cake

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One of my old friends asked me to make her a birthday cake for her birthday, and all that she requested was she wanted pink ombre CAKE (like the actual layers of cake to be dyed a pink ombre), roses on top and MINIONS.

Okay, I LOVE MINIONS!!!!! POOPAYE!!! (that’s goodbye in Minion language… if you didn’t already know that…). They are just the cutest things you’d ever see in your life.

Anyways, so this is what I made. 😀 It is four layers of pink ombre cake (sorry you can’t see it), with vanilla buttercream in between the layers as well as on the outside. And on the top, I just piped roses with different shades of pink vanilla buttercream and I made Minions out of fondant.

It was definitely a fun cake to make!

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Chocolate Covered Strawberry Vanilla Cupcakes

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I had a cupcake order for a Canada’s Day BBQ, and what better way to celebrate than by eating vanilla cupcakes, covered in vanilla buttercream and garnished with a chocolate covered strawberry!?

There’s nothing better!

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VANILLA CUPCAKES

(makes about 20)

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup canola oil (or vegetable or extra light olive oil)
  • 1 cup buttermilk

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 °F and line a cupcake/muffin pan with cupcake liners.
    In a medium bowl, whisk together 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1 1/4 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp baking soda and 1/2 tsp salt. Set flour mix aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat 2 eggs with the whisk attachment on medium speed (15-20 seconds).
  3. Add 3/4 cup sugar and continue to beat on medium speed.
  4. Add vanilla and oil and beat on medium speed.
  5. Reduce mixer speed to medium/low and slowly add about half of the flour mixture. Add half of the buttermilk, then the rest of the flour mix and the rest of the milk. Beat until just combined and smooth, scraping down the sides of the mixing bowl. The batter should be thin.
  6. Pour batter into a lined muffin pan. Fill to about 1/2 full.
  7. Bake for 12 -14 minutes. Let them cool in the pan for a couple minutes, then remove.

Then I made a batch of my buttercream, and decorated away!

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Minecraft Cupcakes

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My boss at work asked me to make her son Minecraft cupcakes for his 8th birthday. So of course I said yes! I already made a Minecraft cake, so I felt pretty confident in making cupcakes as well. (If you don’t know, I am pretty unknowledgeable when it comes to video games… so I had to rely on google images of Minecraft when making these little characters, haha!).

The little boy wanted white cupcakes (which are essentially french vanilla cupcakes) with buttercream icing – so that’s what I made! I also dyed the icing a light green, to resemble the grass in Minecraft.

For decorations, I made 3 copies of the pig, 3  copies of the red TNT block and 3 copies of the green guy with the black face (as you can clearly see again…. I have no idea what the names are of these characters, LOL!) out of fondant.

For the other 15 cupcakes, I printed out images of a couple other characters from the game and stuck them to a toothpick and inserted them on top of the remaining cupcakes.

I hope you enjoy these cupcakes!

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