Mpressive Threadz Studio Blog

Sharing my love of sewing


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Chocolate Cardamom Cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

chocolate cardamom cupcakeI love spices and cardamom is one of my favorites.  The aroma of cardamom is so intoxicating!  One day I had a craving for cake and ice cream and made a microwave chocolate cake in a cup, throwing in a pinch of cardamom. YUM!

Today I wondered what a cupcake would taste like using the same flavor profile.  I sprinkled chopped pistachio nuts on frosted cupcakes.  DELISH!

Below is my recipe for Chocolate Cardamom Cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting.  Click here for the PDF file.

ENJOY!

Cupcakes:

The batter yields between 9 – 12 cupcakes.

⅔ cup all-purpose flour

½ cup cake flour

2 tablespoon cocoa powder

½ teaspoon ground cardamom

½ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

⅓ cup buttermilk

¼ cup orange juice

1 teaspoon McCormick orange peel

⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil (fruity)

2 tablespoons butter (room temperature)

¾ cup sugar

1 egg

½ teaspoon orange extract

  • Preheat oven to 350°.  Position oven rack to the middle of the oven.
  • Put cupcake liners in cupcake baking pan.
  • Sift together flours, cocoa powder, cardamom, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a bowl.  Set the flour mixture aside.
  • Mix together buttermilk, orange juice and orange peel in a cup.  Set the milk mixture aside.
  • Beat olive oil, butter, and sugar in a large mixing bowl on medium speed for 2 minutes.
  • Add egg and orange extract to the mixing bowl. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes until smooth and silky looking.
  • Add ½ of the flour mixture and ½ of the milk mixture to the mixing bowl.  Beat on medium speed for 1 minute.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  • Add remaining flour and milk mixtures to the mixing bowl.  Beat on medium speed for ½ minute. Remove beater(s) and scrape batter from beater(s) into mixing bowl.  Scrape down sides of the bowl.  Stir batter a few times with spatula to incorporate any streaks of flour.
  • Fill cupcake liners half full, which is a scant ¼ cup.
  • Bake for 20 minutes.  Remove from oven.
  • Let cupcakes sit for about 5 minutes then remove from pan.  Cool cupcakes completely before frosting them.

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting:

4 ounces of butter (room temperature)

2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

½ teaspoon orange extract

1 ¼ cups of confectioner’s sugar

¼ cup of cocoa powder

1 teaspoon orange juice

  • Beat butter, olive oil and orange extract on medium speed for 1 minute.
  • Add confectioner’s sugar, cocoa powder and orange juice.  Start on low speed and beat for 1 minute until mixed well.  Scrape down sides of bowl.
  • Beat on high speed for 3 minutes until light and fluffy.
  • Frost cupcakes.


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“Blank” Velvet Cupcakes and Cream Cheese Frosting

My daughter came home because she had an interview for an internship for the 2013 summer. Wow, time is flying. She stayed the weekend in order to fill up on home cooked meals. Home cooked meals must be part of college students’ DNA! My husband is the cook and I am the baker. I baked up a batch of Blank Velvet Cupcakes using red food coloring. I call them Blank Velvet Cupcakes because they can be made with any color or they can be made without food coloring. My cupcakes have a little bit of butter besides the vegetable oil because I love the taste of butter. I use a 50/50 mixture of natural and dutched cocoa because I like the rich flavor of the dutched cocoa but I don’t like the dulled color from using all dutched cocoa. I used pomegranate infused vinegar for this batch, but use what you have (white, apple cider…)

I hit the top of the frosted cupcakes with silver jimmies which seem to have a chocolate flavor in my opinion. I thought it made the cupcakes look very pretty.

DD: Why did you put sprinkles on the cupcakes?

Me: To make them look pretty.

DD: I hate sprinkles.

Me: Well, scrape them off your cupcakes.

I thought everyone loved sprinkles. LOL.

Below is my recipe for Blank Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting. Click here for the PDF file.

ENJOY!

“Blank” Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Pick your favorite color or leave the coloring out

Cupcakes:

The batter yields between 9 – 12 cupcakes.

¾ cup all-purpose flour

½ cup cake flour

½ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon cocoa powder

½ cup buttermilk

1 teaspoon vinegar

1 tablespoon food coloring (liquid) – optional

⅛ teaspoon food coloring (gel) – optional

2 tablespoons butter (room temperature)

⅓ cup vegetable oil

¾ cup sugar

1 egg

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

  • Preheat oven to 350°.  Position oven rack to the middle of the oven.
  • Put cupcake liners in cupcake baking pan.
  • Whisk together flours, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cocoa powder in a bowl, but not the mixing bowl for the batter.  Set the flour mixture aside.
  • Mix together buttermilk, vinegar, and food coloring in a cup.  Omit food coloring if you like.  Set the milk mixture aside.
  • Beat butter, vegetable oil and sugar in a large mixing bowl on medium speed for 2 minutes.
  • Add egg and vanilla extract to the mixing bowl. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes until smooth and silky looking.
  • Add ½ of the flour mixture and ½ of the milk mixture to the mixing bowl.  Beat on medium speed for 1 minute.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  • Add remaining flour and milk mixtures to the mixing bowl.  Beat on medium speed for ½ minute. Remove beater(s) and scrape batter from beater(s) into mixing bowl.  Scrape down sides of the bowl.  Stir batter a few times with spatula to incorporate any streaks of flour.
  • Fill cupcake liners half full, which is a scant ¼ cup.
  • Bake for 20 – 25 minutes.  Remove from oven.
  • Let cupcakes sit for about 5 minutes then remove from pan.  Cool cupcakes completely before frosting them.

Cream Cheese Frosting:

4 ounces of cream cheese (room temperature)

2 tablespoon butter cut into 6 – 8 pieces (cold)

1 teaspoon buttermilk

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

1 ½ cups of confectioner’s sugar

  • Beat cream cheese, butter, buttermilk and vanilla extract on medium speed for 1 minute.
  • Add confectioner’s sugar.  Start on low speed and beat for 1 minute until mixed well.  Scrape down sides of bowl.
  • Beat on high speed for 3 minutes until light and fluffy.
  • Frost cupcakes.


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In Search of Pineapple Coconut Cake

At the beginning of this year I received an email from WordPress with the subject line: Your 2010 year in blogging. It provided me with wonderful stats regarding my blog. Most of all it confirmed what I had suspected about the most popular search term bringing visitors to my sewing blog, which you can guess by the title of this posting. PINEAPPLE COCONUT CAKE! Okay, how funny is that. I know I laughed for a long time.

So for all my visitors searching for a recipe for pineapple coconut cake, here’s one of mine.

Click here for the recipe.

To my family, sorry, this is not Aunt Nora’s recipe. My mother made a fabulous pineapple coconut cake and I failed to write down the recipe while she was alive. I watched her making it once and I remember that she used cream cheese and sour cream in the frosting, and use pineapple juice in the cake batter. One day I’ll start experimenting and maybe I’ll be able to replicate that cake.

This recipe is a combination of things I have learned over the past 35 years from family, friends, cooking shows and cookbooks. This one has fluffy frosting, pineapple ginger filling and coconut pastry; but it’s not a difficult cake to make.

Let me know how your cake turned out. ENJOY!


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Options for a snowy day – Chapter 2

Let it snow, let it snow

Outside it’s cold

But the fire’s blazin”

So, baby, let it snow

Let it snow

Let it snow

Let it snow.

                                                               song by Boyz II Men

 

My annual Sunday Before Christmas Dinner is off.  I guess this year it will be a Sunday Before New Year’s Dinner.  So the options I have chosen so far today: 

Sewing

I cut out the hoodie for my son. I need to cut the lining.  I decided to take a short break, during which my husband and youngest son started chanting loudly, “We want cookies! We want cookies!”  My loving husband then threatened to disconnect my internet connect if I wasn’t in the kitchen in 5 minutes. 

Christmas baking

I mixed a batch of Snickerdoodles and a batch of the Triple Chocolate cookies.  While mixing the cookies I looked out the window every so often to watch the comedy that was unfolding outside.  There is a foot of snow outside, it’s still coming down hard and heavy, and several of my neighbors are trying to drive who knows where.  Mind you, I live on a hill that curves and my house is at the bend of the curve, so I can see down to the corner intersection and up the street to the next bend.  People were out pushing cars trying to get through the intersection.  One of the cars of the neighbor on the right is now blocking the driveway of my neighbor on the left.  The neighbor on the right then moved his large sedan down his driveway into the street so he could drive the vehicle that was parked behind it.  I had to laugh out loud when it took him 15 minutes to back the large sedan back UP his driveway.  Our driveways slope down to the street; we are on a hill on a hill.

This is why the supermarkets and other stores were overcrowded yesterday.  My husband spent 1 ½ hours on the checkout line. People knew we would be snowed in.  The secondary street probably won’t be plowed until Monday.  It’s a battle to keep the main roads plowed!  Whatever we don’t have in the pantry at the moment, we don’t need.

So, baby, let it snow!