Saturday, January 16, 2010

PB & Hey!

Really, really late last night/really, really early this morning, I couldn't sleep so...I made cupcakes.

Of course.

I spent the earlier part of the night finishing up "Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Media" which, by the way, has an intermission.

After falling asleep at random times during the movie with one thought flying through my head ("Gosh, I can't help thinking that ol' Noam here resembles George Bush 1 and 2."), I finally jumped up and found that I was pretty awake.

(Naps are refreshing. I wouldn't mind big government mandating siestas, would you?)

I almost had to force myself to make golden/yellow/plain old cupcakes. The other times that I tried the supposedly tried-and-true recipe, it came out tasting odd to me. Like, in the way that a cynic would go...ew, these taste vegan. That's why I usually make the chocolate cupcakes from the book, which are A-W-E-some, but after this week's hit--the maple cupcakes--I thought I'd give the golden another chance.

Well, I still didn't like them but I figured that a dollop or fifty of some good old frosting would save the day. I decided to wait until the next morning to whip something up. The next morning, meaning, after noon, but that's neither here nor there.

I wanted to try out a strawberry-type frosting, but even after making a strawberry puree, it was a little much for me after just waking up. I figured that a chocolate frosting would work but that would have been such a cop out. So, I ended up trying something that I thought would be only so-so...but it was only so-so AMAZING!

My golden cupcakes with light, fluffy, delicious-ness-ness peanut butter frosting:

I used the fresh ground peanut butter that I buy from Earth Fare for my choco-peanut-butter-smoothies, but I haven't made those for a while now so I figured that this would be a good way to out the PB to work. I was a bit afraid that the texture of the peanut butter would be too grainy or thick or whatever but it worked out woooonderfully!

I tried out a new frosting method to get the sides relatively smooth for buttercream...something like this which gives the frosting some height. Look at that cupcake truck! Here's an inside look on the frosting:

Cupcakes for breakfast are OK. Don't let anyone tell you different.

The frosting was so fluffy that the amount wasn't overwhelming or too sugary/grainy.

Speaking of frosting...what a trip. When I was younger making cupcakes, I did the normal knife-to-tub and spread from there. When I recently starting using pastry bags and piped the stuff I was soooo proud of myself and excited. BUT, at this point I feel like the it's a cop-out and one that is labor-intensive at that! I may just need to explore different tips (and one that doesn't make chocolate frosting look like poop, please). I started using ganache and I love it for it's shininess and the hard candy coating that I get. Love it! The hard candy coating with the fluffy cupcake is just fun and still unexpected. I've never done it, and I don't plan on doing it, but I don't like the whole tiny-dollop-in-the-center-of-the-cupcake thing, like this. Yes, it is a very beautiful cupcake, but that frosting is so pretty, give me more! Well, the frosting shouldn't overwhelm the thing, but in my case today...thank goodness for peanut butter.


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