Monday, January 30, 2012

Wedding Cupcake Trial: Part 4: Irish Cream

Wedding Cupcake Trial: Part 4: Irish Cream 

Inspiration picture via Pinterest  via  Recipe Adapted from

These cupcakes include a chocolate Guinness cupcake, with a irish whiskey chocolate ganache filling topped with a swirl of Bailey's Irish Cream Butter Cream. -- How can you go wrong?! 

Irish Cream Cupcakes 
(Makes about 12 cupcakes) 


  • 1/2 cup regular Guinness
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened 
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 
  • 1 cup white sugar 
  • 1 cup all purpose flour 
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt 
  • 1 whole large egg
  • 1/3 cup Fat Free Chobani or other Greek Yogurt
Chocolate Whiskey Ganache Filling 
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate or bittersweet chocolate chips 
  • 1/3 cup light cream 
  • 1 TB unsalted butter, softened 
  • 2 tsp Irish Whiskey (If you do not have this around feel free to skip it- but it does make a lovely addition!) 
Bailey's Buttercream Frosting 
  • about 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter, softened 
  • 4 tablespoons Bailey's Irish Cream 
Start the cupcakes: 
  1. Preheat oven to 350* F 
  2. Prepare your muffin pan and cupcake liners (about 12) 
  3. in a small to medium sauce pan heat the guinness and butter over medium heat, until butter is melted, stirring occasionally. Add in unsweetened cocoa and stir. Remove from heat and set aside. 
  4. In a large bowl mix flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Set aside. 
  5. In a medium bowl combine eggs and greek yogurt. 
  6. Mix Chocolate and Guinness mixture into your egg and greek yogurt mixture. 
  7. Next mix your Guinness/ Egg/ Yogurt mixture into your flour mixture until combined. 
  8. Bake in oven for about 20 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Set aside to cool completely. 
  9. Once cupcakes are cooled completely, remove the centers using a cupcake corer/ apple corer or a knife. (I took the easy route and used a cupcake corer). ** Some people recommend freezing your cored cupcake before filling it. I am always to impatient, so I have yet to try this. 

In the mean while the cupcakes are baking you can work on the ganache. 
  1. In a sauce pan, simmer the light cream over medium- low heat. 
  2. Stir in the chocolate chips until smooth. 
  3. Add butter and whiskey and mix. 
  4. Remove from heat and set aside to cool. 
  5. Once complete cool, fill the holes you made in the cupcakes with the ganache. 
Finally make your Bailey's Frosting (You may be able to do this while your cupcakes and ganache are cooling) 
  1. In a large bowl whip softened butter and powdered sugar until fluffy. Add in Bailey's and continue whipping until well combined. 
  2. Pipe or spread frosting onto cooled, and filled cupcakes. 
  3. Top with some cocoa powder if desired. 


  • I made these guys at the same time as I made the Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes - so most people just kept saying they liked the Reese's cupcakes more.  I personally liked these ones better.  
  • The cake crumb was a little drier than the Reese's (But I guess my homemade cake can't compare to Duncan Hynes extra Moist!) 
  • The frosting was a little on the sweet side-- I personally like frosting really sweet, but maybe a bit more butter/ less sugar could have decreased the sweetness and improved the piping ability. 
Photography by Jordan Garry unless otherwise states. 

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Wedding Cupcake Trial: Part 3: Wedding White

Wedding Cupcake Trial: Part 3: Wedding White Cupcakes

Inspiration Picture via Pinterest and Recipe adapted from 

I made a half batch of these-  but below to keep it simple is the amounts for a full batch (about 36 cupcakes)

White Wedding Cupcakes 

1 box white cake mix ( I used Pillsbury Super Moist White Cake Mix) 
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated white sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups water
2 Tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup fat free (0%) Chobani 
4 large egg whites
  1. Preheat oven to 325* F 
  2. Prepared Cupcake pan and liners (about 36) 
  3. Mix Cake mix, flour, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix until well blended. 
  4. Fill cupcake liners ~1/2- 3/4 of the way full. 
  5. Place in oven and bake 18-22 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. 
  6. Remove from oven and cool completely. 

For the Frosting I did a buttercream somewhat based on "The Best Buttercream Recipe" - which I keep trying different ways to discover the truly BEST Buttercream. 

1 cup unsalted butter, softened  - divided
1/2 cup white granulated sugar
1/2 cup powdered sugar
4 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 cup milk (I used Silk Light Soymilk)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract  (or whatever other kind you want- I also tried almond extract)
  1. In a saucepan over medium heat, place 1 Tablespoon of butter with flour and stir for about 1-2 minutes. Add in milk slowly, stirring constantly until batter becomes thick. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
  2. In a large bowl place the rest of the butter and sugars and beat with an electric mixer until fluffy. This can take a long time (10-15 minutes) to get the granulated sugar fluffy but it is worth it. If you have a stand mixer- this would be an ideal time to use it. 
  3. Add cooled flour/ milk/ butter mixture to butter and sugar, and beat. 
  4. Add in extract and beat until combined. 
  5. Refrigerate for about 1/2 an hour until slightly thickened. 
  6. Pipe or spread onto completely cooled cupcakes. Add any other decorations (I added colored sugar below). 

 For the version I put on this cupcake I added a bit more butter and a little bit less sugar-- the result came out almost like whipped cream! It was soo fluffy. I think next time I will follow the recipe I wrote above a bit closer since I like my frosting sweeter.

The Results:

  • The cake had great flavor and was super moist.
  •  I think I slightly undercooked them, so they were a bit to gummy in the middle so be sure to double check the doneness.
  •  The frosting was great! Like I said above- depending on your taste you may want to tweek the amounts of butter and sugars to get it sweeter or fluffier.

Photography by Jordan Garry unless otherwise stated.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Wedding Cupcake Trial: Part 2 Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes

Wedding Cupcake Trial: Part 2!   Peanut butter cup cupcakes 

Here is the inspiration picture (via Pinterest) and the recipe was adapted from 

I made a whole batch of these ones. 

Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes 
(Makes about 12 Cupcakes) 
  • 1 box (18 oz.) chocolate cake mix -- I used Duncan Hines Dark Chocolate Fudge Cake 
  • 1 cup Fat Free Greek Yogurt  -- I used 0% Chobani 
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 (12 oz bag) Reese’s miniature peanut butter cups, unwrapped
  • 1 cup butter, softened
Peanut Butter Frosting 
  • 2 cups Skippy Creamy Peanut Butter
  • 1 cup butter, unsalted, softened
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 6 Tablespoons milk, -- I used Silk Light Original 
  1. Preheat oven to 350* 
  2. Prepare cupcake pan with cupcake liners (About 12) 
  3. In a large bowl mix cake mix, greek yogurt, water and eggs. Beat on medium speed, scraping side of bowl periodically. 
  4. Scoop batter into prepared cupcake pans, filling about 1/2 to 2/3 of the way filled. 
  5. Place unwrapped Reese's cup into cupcake batter so that about 1/2 of it is sticking out of the batter. The peanut butter cup will continue to sink while cooking, if you push it too far down it will stick to the bottom of the cupcake liner and make it hard to eat. 
  6. Place cupcake pan into preheated oven and bake for 18 minutes or until cupcake springs back when touched lightly. 
  7. Remove from oven and cool completely. 

For the Frosting: 
  1. In a medium to large bowl beat butter and peanut butter with an electric mixer until well blended. 
  2. Add sugar and milk in 3 segments, beating in between and scraping down the sides. Add more milk if needed to achieve desired consistency. 
  3. Pipe frosting onto cooled cupcakes. 

* These cupcakes got rave reviews! 
* Nice and moist, with a great crumb. 
* Great flavor. I think the Dark Chocolate cake really helped! 
* The only issue with these was some I pushed the Reese's Peanut Butter cup in too far, thus it stuck to the cupcake liner - so make sure to have it sticking out at least 1/2 way before baking! 
* I think these will definitely be appearing at the wedding - unless I get sick of making cupcakes by then ;)   

* Photography by Jordan Garry (other than the first picture attributed to 

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Chai Cupcakes with Honey Ginger Cream

As promised,  here is the first of my trial wedding cupcakes! 

Chai Cupcakes with Honey Ginger Cream 

This recipe was inspired by Pinterest, (as usual) via this picture:

I adapted the recipe from  to make it cupcakes. Plus, since I am just taste testing I have been halving all of the recipes so I don't wind up with obscene amounts of cupcakes! 

Chai Cupcakes  (Makes about 6 cupcakes)

2/3 Cup milk (I used Silk Light Soymilk)
3 Tbsp loose black tea (I couldn't find loose black tea at the regular grocery store so I just used 4 tea bags and dumped them out.)
1 tsp cardamom
1/2 tsp fennel
1/2" of ginger, peeled and grated
2 large eggs
1 large egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla
1.5 c all purpose flour
1 c  sugar
1.5 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 c unsalted butter, softened

Simmer milk, tea, cardamom, fennel and ginger in a saucepan over medium-low heat until it bubbles. Remove from heat and continue to steep for 5 minutes.  Strain milk mixture into a bowl, trying to get out as much liquid as possible. Discard the solids and set milk aside to cool. 

Preheat oven to 350F. 
Prepared cupcake cake tins with liners.

In a medium bowl, combine the eggs, egg yolks, vanilla and 1/6 cup of the chai milk. Set aside.

In a large bowl mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Beat on low to combine, then add the butter and remaining chai milk. Beat on low speed to blend, then raise speed to medium and beat until light and fluffy. Add the egg mixture in three additions, scraping down the sides of the bowl often and mixing just to incorporate. 

Fill cupcake liners about half way and place in preheated oven. Bake for ~25 minutes or until cake springs back when touched lightly in the center.  Place in refrigerator to cool completely. 

My cupcakes came out rather high. I am not sure if that was due to overfilling the cupcake liners or if this recipe really just does puff up a lot. 

In order to make frosting the cupcakes easier I cup off the tops of the cakes. 

Honey Ginger Frosting

3 oz light cream cheese, softened
3 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1/4 c  honey
1/2 tsp freshly grated ginger
1.75 c  confectioners' sugar

 Place cream cheese, butter, honey and ginger in a bowl and beat on medium to medium high. Add in confectioners sugar slowly, scraping down the sides of the bowl periodically. 
Refrigerate until a slightly thicker consistency. 

Once the frosting and cupcakes were cool, I piped the frosting on. 

And then decorated with a sprinkle of cinnamon: 



* the taste was quite delicious. I personally think it could have deal with maybe even being a bit more Chai-y 

* the texture was a bit dense and some complained it was dry.  This may be due to overcooking, or perhaps to using light milk? Or maybe the baking powder I used was past its prime so it did not rise the way it should have. 

* the frosting was good, but did not pipe well. Even the ones that were pictured with the nice piping eventually all flattened out. More butter would likely help the frosting to stand up better, or just spread the frosting. 

Any tips for improving the recipe are welcomed! 

What is your favorite kind of cake?? 

 (Photography by Jordan Garry)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The wedding down-low

As I have mentioned, I am tentatively planning for my upcoming wedding this September.  I have never been the type of girl to dream about her wedding. In fact, I always had planned to elope and then maybe have a party afterwards.

My good friend, Jessica, spent some time doing wedding photography and videography and shared her new found insight that weddings are rarely actually about the couple as much as they are about the families. No matter how many times people keep saying "It's YOUR wedding" -- that only seems to mean so much.

My parents were very much in support of my elopement plan. My father even offered to by me a ladder. Jordan's parents, on the other hand, namely his mother, wouldn't hear of such a thing. And, as it turns out, Jordan appears to be more of the one who also wants a big wedding. So, alas, here we go!

The planning process is turning out to be rather stressful. In the beginning it was a lot of fun, especially due to Pinterest. I now have upwards of 4 Pin Boards dedicated to wedding stuff.

However, once it came to actually taking into account other people's opinions it became a lot hard.
Again, people kept making the statement  "It's YOUR wedding" (I can't tell you how many times I have heard that in the past few months!) But it never felt like it really was since many times my opinions seemed to keep being swept to the wayside.

One day I was discussing the wedding planning with my mother and her boyfriend (Tom) and Tom said, "It's not all about you." 

For some reason that is the only statement that has really stuck out to me in this whole planning process.   I think that is partially since, in general, we are taught to not be selfish and that the world doesn't revolve around us. Therefore these "special days" that are really supposed to be about a loving union between two people somehow become a way to please everyone else.

I developed a conundrum between being guiltless  and trying to appease everyone else.

Since, for the most part, I do not have clear ideas about what I want it has been easier to go towards the route of appeasing, but at the same time I am trying to pick the things that are important to me and putting my foot down.

Anyway, I am sure I will continue to be wishy washy between the two throughout this process - so bear with me!

In the meantime, my current plan is to make my own cupcakes for the wedding versus paying a baker (we shall see how this goes!) So keep an eye out for trial cupcake recipes.
A note of warning- I will try to be doing as little improving as possible with the recipes to ensure a good taste so they will likely not be as healthy as some of my other recipes.