Archives for posts with tag: Icing

I am a happy godmother of two amazing young women: Stephanie and Laura and we were able to spend a weekend together where we explored some embassies in DC, checked out the DC Funk Parade, ate some Chinese food, made brunch and baked cupcakes! Since the beginning of great summer weather is approaching, we thought it would be fitting to make these amazing strawberry lemonade cupcakes. The original recipe also suggested putting them in mason jars which is adorable too, but we stuck with some quintessential summer cupcake liners that were too perfect to pass up. Enjoy these refreshing summer treats!

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Lemon Cupcakes Ingredients: 

  • 1 1/4 cups cake flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon pure lemon extract
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup oil (vegetable, canola or extra light olive oil)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream (any fat content)

Strawberry Frosting Ingredients: 

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 4oz. (1/2 block) cream cheese (cold)
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2-3 Tablespoons strawberry jam
  • 2-3 fresh strawberries, pureed (or very finely chopped)
  • 1 Tablespoon heavy cream, or milk, as needed

Lemon Cupcakes Directions:

Preheat oven to 350*F. In a medium bowl, add cake flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir together with whisk, and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, add eggs and beat 10-20 seconds.

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Add sugar and continue to beat on medium speed about 30 seconds. Add vanilla, lemon extract, lemon juice, zest and oil, beat.

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Add sour cream and blend until combined.

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Reduce mixer speed to low and slowly add the flour mixture. Mix just until the dry ingredients are incorporated. Pour (or scoop) batter into a muffin pan prepared with paper liners. Fill liners about 2/3 full (no more).

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Bake cupcakes in pre-heated oven for 12-15 minutes

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Strawberry Frosting

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter until fully smooth. Add cream cheese, and again beat until fully incorporated and very smooth. While mixing on low speed, add the powdered sugar, one cup at a time.

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Add vanilla extract, then strawberry jam and beat until well combined. If the jam you are using has large chunks in it, you may need to blend in a food processor or press through a fine strainer before adding to the frosting. Depending on the ripeness of your berries, you may want to add 1 drop of pink food coloring to the icing.

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If the frosting is very thick, add heavy cream or milk, then beat until light and fluffy. Frost on cooled cupcakes.

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Love these goons:

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My sister turned 23! I just can’t believe it! She will always be my little sister but that just means the older she gets, the older I’m getting! Because she is my PIC in my baking madness, I wanted to dedicate the next few posts to her. I baked quite a bit for her birthday week and here are some recipes and pictures of what we did. Needless to say we were on a sugar high for that week but it was quite nice and I’m grateful every day to have such a kind, funny, talented, and all around awesome sister.  Love you and to many more happy and sweet birthdays!

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To start it all off, I made her some donuts! She loves cinnamon flavored treats and I though this was perfect to start off her birthday 🙂 Also, these donuts are baked so no need to fry anything or feel guilty later!

Ingredients

Donuts:
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ teaspoon white vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 4 tablespoons butter, softened
Glaze:
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
Directions
Preheat oven to 350F. In a large bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon; set aside. In a small saucepan bring together the milk, white vinegar, vanilla, egg, and butter. Cook over medium-heat, stirring constantly with a whisk until the butter melts, about one minute. Remove from heat.
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Add the milk mixture into the flour mixture; mix until combined.
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Using a large tablespoon, spoon the doughnut mixture into an ungreased doughnut pan.
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Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove and immediately invert the pan onto a cooling rack. While the doughnuts are cooling, begin to work on the glaze.
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Glaze
Place all the ingredients in a small saucepan and cook over medium-heat, stirring constantly just until combined and no lumps appear. Set the saucepan over a bowl filled with hot water.
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Dip the doughnuts into the glaze, one at a time, and set on a rack, glaze side up. Put something underneath the rack because some of that glaze will drip off.
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Give it a few minutes before you dig in!
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We went to a dance performance at the Kennedy Center that evening and the sunset was stunning!
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And afterwards, the birthday song of course!
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Snow day! My sister and I set out to make the fluffiest cake ever and have a snowy photo shoot. We really had a great time and were able to take pictures out in the snow before it stopped snowing (all though it was more hail by the time we went out!). We put some food coloring in the cake batter and just put all of it in a pan and cut it in two with a large bread knife. After frosting the cake, we covered it with coconut shavings. Definitely making this again and hope you enjoy the pictures! Check out my sister’s photography site at http://www.laurajquintero.com

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Ingredients for cake:
    • 5 large egg whites, at room temperature
    • 1 whole egg
    • 1 cup whole milk, at room temperature
    • 2-1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
    • 3 cups cake flour, sifted
    • 2 cups sugar
    • 1 tbsp + 1 tsp baking powder
    • 3/4 tsp salt
    • 12 tbsp unsalted butter, cold and cut into 24 even pieces

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Ingredients for frosting:
  • 3 sticks + 2 tbsp unsalted butter, softened and cut into cubes
  • 3 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar (icing, powdered)
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt

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Directions: 

For the cake:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease, line with parchment, and flour two round 8-inch pans.
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In a medium bowl or measuring cup, combine and stir the egg whites, whole egg, 1/4 cup of milk, and the vanilla. Set aside.
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In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the dry ingredients together on low speed (I use the “stir” setting on my mixer) for 30 seconds.
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Add the butter one piece at a time, about every 10 seconds, ensuring it’s cold (you can keep some in refrigerator while you’re adding pieces). Continue to mix on low until the mixture is a fine crumbly texture. Add milk, and mix on low speed for 5 minutes. Scrape the sides of the bowl and begin to add the egg mixture in 3 separate batches, mixing until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. (You want to ensure that the batter is homogenous.) Fold once or twice to ensure the batter at bottom of bowl is incorporated.
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Divide the batter in two, spreading it evenly with a small offset palette knife. If you have a kitchen scale, weigh to ensure 2 even layers.
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Bake until a cake tester comes out with a few crumbs when inserted into the center, about 30 minutes. Be so careful to not over-bake. Check cake at 20 minutes, but not before, and then set the timer for 5 minute intervals. Let cool on racks for 10 minutes before loosening the sides with a small metal spatula, and invert onto greased wire racks. Gently turn cakes back up, so the tops are up and cool completely.
Wrap tightly and store at room temperature for up to 2 days, refrigerator for up to 5 days, or frozen for up to 2 months. Best eaten the same day as baked.
For the frosting:
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip butter for 8 minutes on medium speed (I use “4” on my KitchenAid). Butter will become very pale & creamy. Add remaining ingredients and mix on low speed for 1 minute, then on medium speed for 6 minutes. Frosting will be very light, creamy and fluffy. Best used right away. You can eliminate the vanilla bean and use a total of 1-1/2 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract.
Assembly:
Place bottom cake layer on cake plate or 8″ round thin cake board and spread 1 cup of frosting on top with a small offset spatula. Gently place 2nd cake layer face down on top. Place a generous scoop of frosting on top, spreading evenly with a small offset spatula and working your way down the sides until you have a thin layer of frosting over the entire cake. Chill until set, about 30 minutes. Remove from refrigerator and apply a final “coat” of frosting.
Store in a cake keeper at room temperature for up to 2 days, or in refrigerator for up to 5 days. Best eaten day 1.

First snow day of 2015! After a huge craving for some hot cocoa, I found recipes for hot cocoa cupcakes and hot cocoa frosting! My sister and I had been planning on taking some snow-filled pictures and this was the perfect opportunity to do so! Enjoy the recipes, the snow and the pictures!

Ingredients

Cupcakes

  • 1 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup cocoa
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup hot water

Frosting

  • 1/2 cup Hot Cocoa Mix
  • 1/3 cup hot water
  • 1/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 pound powdered sugar

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line cupcake tray with baking cups. Mix flour, cocoa, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in the bowl of your stand mixer until all of the dry ingredients are combined. Add eggs one at a time, mixing in between. Add milk, oil and vanilla and mix until combined. Turn mixer on low and slowly add hot water until incorporated. The batter will be very liquid.

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For ease of pouring, transfer batter to a large measuring cup and pour batter into baking cups about 2/3 full.

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Bake for about 16-18 minutes or until done. Remove and let cool.

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For the frosting, combine cocoa mix and water in large mixer bowl. Beat in butter and vanilla extract. Gradually beat in powdered sugar until smooth and creamy. Add more hot water if frosting is too thick.

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Here are my sister’s awesome pictures!

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Behind the scenes :p

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Making this cake was quite nice but the lemon glaze didn’t quite end up looking like the original picture but it was still delicious and the combination between the lemon and the berries was awesome! Also, the flour over frozen berries was a total life hack! Enjoy!!

Ingredients

Cake
    • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
    • 2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
    • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
    • zest of 1 lemon
    • 3 large eggs
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 3/4 cup kefir (or buttermilk)
    • 3 cups mixed berries (I used 1 cup raspberry, 1 cup blackberry, 1 cup blueberry)
    • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Glaze
  • 1 cup and 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 4 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened (not melted! the butter should still be able to retain its shape!)

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 F. In a medium bowl, mix 2 1/2 cups flour, baking powder and salt and combine thoroughly.

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In a separate large bowl, add together the softened butter, sugar and lemon zest and mix, using mixer, on high setting for about 5 minutes until even consistency is reached and the mixture reaches lighter color. Add eggs, vanilla to the butter-sugar mixture and continue beating until well-incorporated.

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Now we’ll be adding flour mixture into the butter-sugar mixture in 3 gradual steps, instead of dumping all of flour at one time. If you dump all of flour mixture into your butter mixture at one time, it will be more difficult to stir and you won’t get a smooth texture. So, we’ll be adding flour and kefir (or buttermilk) in 3 additions: With your mixer on low speed, add 1/3 of flour mixture to butter-sugar mixture, beating just a little until all is well combined. Then follow by 1/4 cup of kefir (or buttermilk). Add second 1/3 cup of flour mixture, beating with mixer just to combine. Follow by 1/4 cup of kefir (or buttermilk), beating just to combine. Finally, add third 1/3 cup of flour mixture, followed by final 1/4 cup of kefir (or buttermilk). Again, beat just enough to combine. Make sure to have your mixer on low speed while adding flour, otherwise flour might fly around your kitchen. Make sure to not overmix or overbeat, use mixer just to combine the ingredients.

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In a separate bowl, combine berries with 2 tbsp of flour. This is supposed to prevent berries from clumping together and sinking. Note about using frozen berries: I did make this cake with frozen berries without defrosting them. It’s important that, if using frozen berries, they should not be clumped together, each berry should be separate (I freeze fresh berries by lining them on a cookie sheet). So you can use both fresh and frozen berries, and in either case you toss them with flour before adding to the batter.

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Using spatula, fold berries into the cake batter, trying not to squish the berries.

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Spray your cake pan with a Baking Spray with Flour (which works great for bundt pans). Pour batter gently into prepared pan.

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Bake for at least 60 minutes (depending on the oven, it could be as long as 1 hour 15 minutes), until the toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Mid-time through the baking, turn the pan around in the oven for even baking.

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Remove the pan from oven, let it cool for 40 minutes on wire rack. And here is my way of releasing the cake from the bundt pan, which proves successful each time I use it: After your bundt pan cooled off for 40 minutes, place the bundt pan in the freezer for 30 minutes – it will still be quite hot to the touch (even after 40 minutes of cooling), so use kitchen gloves to handle the pan. Remove the pan from the freezer after 30 minutes, invert the bundt pan and let it sit inverted for a bit to let the gravity do the work (it could take as little as half a minute or as long as 20 minutes, depending on your bundt pan). Then, gently lift bundt pan and your cake should be released

Whisk powdered sugar, lemon juice and butter until very thick and very white. Spread this lemon juice frosting over the top of the cooled cake like shown on the photos.

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This cake really does taste like muffin, no joke! I was having a rough day and I really just wanted to make a cake. My sister helped me out and we worked on this cake for quite some time while watching the CFB Championship game. It was a lot of fun but the cake didn’t look quite as nice as the original recipe did. But that just drives home the purpose of Baking with Friends: that the process itself is what is so enjoyable about baking, the cake may come out pretty or ugly, tasty or nasty, but either way, the important part you will remember later on was how much fun you had in the process. So grab some friends, make this cake and let me know if yours didn’t fall apart in the end! 🙂

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 3/4 cups all purpose Gold Medal Flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • Zest of 2 lemons
  • 1 pound fresh blueberries (I didn’t have enough blueberries so I mixed in some raspberries as well)

Buttermilk Glaze:

  • 3 tablespoons buttermilk
  • 1 cup powdered sugar

Oat Crumble Topping:

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons oats
  • 2 tablespoons sliced almonds (I didn’t use these but you can!)

Ingredients

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Spray a bundt pan with non-stick cooking spray and sprinkle with flour to fully cover the pan.

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In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Then beat in the eggs and vanilla. Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a separate bowl. Turn the mixer on low and slowly add the flour and buttermilk, alternating each, until all incorporated.

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Finally beat in the lemon zest before turning the mixer off.

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Use a spoon the stir in half the blueberries.

Pour the batter into the prepared bundt pan and sprinkle the remaining blueberries over the top.

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Bake for 60-80 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool for at least 20 minutes before flipping out onto a cooling rack.

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DO NOT try flipping the cake any earlier than 20 minutes, or the cake will stick. Promise! Waiting 30+ minutes is safer.

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Once the cake is cooling on the rack, mix the oat crumble. Add all the ingredients to a small bowl and pinch with your fingers to blend the ingredients and break into small pieces. Sprinkle the mixture over a baking sheet and bake in the heated oven for 5-10 minutes. Cool on the baking sheet before proceeding.

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For the glaze, whisk the buttermilk and powdered sugar in a small bowl. Drizzle the glaze over the cake and immediately sprinkle the oat crumble over the top of the cake before the glaze dries.

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Not too shabby and absolutely delicious!

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 To end off our Thanksgiving cupcake extravaganza, we made these delicious Pumpkin Snickerdoodle Cupcakes thanks to Your Cup of Cake and they were absolutely delicious! Instead of just leaving them with plain icing on the top, we added some fun turkey faces on top of the whole treat to add to the festivities!

Ingredients
Cupcakes:
1 box yellow or white cake mix (you can use Spice mix and omit spices)
1 Tbsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp. cinnamon
15 oz. pumpkin puree
3 eggs
1/2 C. applesauce or oil
1/3 C. milk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
Snickerdoodle topping:
6 Tbsp. butter, melted
1/4 C. sugar
1 Tbsp. cinnamon
Cinnamon Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting:
1/2 C. butter, softened
8 oz. cream cheese
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. vanilla extract
3 1/2 – 4 1/2 C. powdered sugar
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Small note about this Pumpkin Pie Spice: I went to buy some at the grocery store because I saw it called for some in the recipe, but when I saw how much it cost to buy for a blend of other more common household spices, I decided not to buy it. I happened to find it in my pantry later at home and ended up using it, but always be sure to read the labels to see if it is one less thing you might need!
Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line pans with cupcake liners. Sift cake mix, pumpkin pie spice and cinnamon into a bowl an set aside.
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In a large bowl, combine pumpkin, eggs, applesauce, milk and vanilla extract.
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Stir in cake mix and spices.
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Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full and bake for 17-22 minutes or until an inserted knife comes out clean.
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Place your melted butter in a small bowl. Combine sugar and cinnamon in another small bowl.
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Use a pastry brush to brush melted butter on the tops of your cupcakes (they can be cooled or nearly cooled), then roll the tops of the cupcakes into your cinnamon-sugar to get that “snickerdoodle” look.
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Frosting: Beat butter and cream cheese. Add cinnamon and vanilla extract and slowly add in powdered sugar until you reach your desired consistency. Add 1 Tbsp. milk if it becomes too thick.
Pipe onto cooled cupcakes and sprinkles extra cinnamon-sugar on top!

This was the most intensive endeavor BWF has undertaken yet! We built these the same day we did the Christmas wreath and let’s just say it was a baking EXTRAVAGANZA! Everything came out perfectly but it was no easy task! As you can imagine, to make gingerbread houses from scratch, you need to make the cookies, the icing, and gather the decorations you will use. But aside from that, each piece of the house must be pre-cut so that when the cookies are baked, they are already in the shapes needed to build the house. Don’t forget this important first step! Keep in mind, this recipe makes ONE gingerbread house. We tripled this recipe to make THREE gingerbread houses, one for each family (that rhymes!). I encourage you to enjoy this in the company with loved ones and it is bound to be a memorable experience!

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Ingredients

Gingerbread House Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup light molasses or dark corn syrup
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons water

Icing Ingredients

  • 1 pound (3-3/4 cups) powdered sugar, sifted if lumpy
  • 1 to 2 large egg whites, or substitute 4 teaspoons packaged egg whites and 1/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract, vanilla or lemon juice

Decorations

  • Gumdrops, licorice, peppermint, and other decorations as desired

Directions

Gingerbread House:

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter, brown sugar, molasses, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and baking soda together until the mixture is smooth. Blend in the flour and water to make a stiff dough. Chill at least 30 minutes or until firm. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Cut out the following paper patterns for the gingerbread house template:

  • Two rectangles, 3 by 5 inches, to make the front and back of the house.
  • Two rectangles, 3 by 5 1/2 inches for the roof.
  • Two pieces for the ends of the house, 3 inches wide at the base, 3 inches to the roof line, and slanted to a peak 5 1/2 inches from the bottom.
  • Four smaller rectangles, 1 1/2 by 1 inch for the roof and sides of the entryway.
  • One piece, 2 inches wide at the base, 1 1/2 inches to the roof line, and slanted to a peak 2 1/2 inches from the bottom for the front of the entryway.

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Roll gingerbread dough out to edges on a large, rimless cookie sheet. Place paper patterns onto the rolled out dough. With a sharp, straight edged knife, cut around each of the pieces, but leave pieces in place. Bake at 375 degrees F for about 15 minutes until dough feels firm. Place patterns on top of the gingerbread again and trim shapes, cutting edges with a straight-edged sharp knife. Leave to cool on baking sheet.

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Royal Icing:

Mix all of the ingredients together using an electric hand mixer, until the icing is smooth and thin enough to be pressed through a pastry bag with a writing tip. Add more lemon juice, if necessary.

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Place royal icing into pastry bag with a writing tip and press out to decorate individual parts of house, piping on decorations, windows, door, etc., as desired. Let dry until hardened.

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Glue sides, front and back of house together at corners using royal icing. Place an object against the pieces to prop up until icing is dry (it only takes a few minutes). Glue the two roof pieces to the pitched roofline of the house. Then, similarly, glue the sides and roof of the entryway together with icing.

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Attach the entryway to the front of the house.

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Continue decorating the house, glueing on gumdrops, licorice and peppermint, as desired.

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First House

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Second House

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Third House

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BWF Extravaganza!

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ENJOY!

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