Thursday, March 22, 2012

Cupcakes for Dad

   Today is my dad's birthday.

   And a lot has happened this week & I tried a new recipe which is why I have posted for the last few days in a row which I normally don't do. The next actual post will probably Monday or Tuesday since Sunday I am making dinner for the family (about 14 people) so I'll be busy this weekend. I may post a picture if something good happens or an early picture of Sunday dinner.

    I had originally though about making him Nigella's chocolate cheesecake, but I didn't realize that his birthday was just a few days before Sunday dinner, which I am making the dinner and dessert. Plus, we only had 1 bar of cream cheese so that meant no cheesecake and only a few eggs left in the fridge.
before frosting

   I went of the search for a good chocolate recipe. I found many that were very decadent and that looked incredible, but my dad isn't into big, fancy, complicated things; he is just as happy with a batch of cookies or brownies.  I found a lot of recipes that involved nutella, but I'm not sure if he likes it because every time I try to get him to try some he says he is full or that he just brushed his teeth. excuses. My mom even tried it and liked it.

  I thought about making cupcakes since they are portion sized, easy, cute, and I recently got some cute liners from the craft store. I found a recipe for decadent chocolate muffins, but the recipe called for figs and I only had dates. I know with several recipes that you can swap the two, but since we were low on eggs I didn't want to take the chance.

  I also had to be careful about how much sugar was in the recipe and if any of the add ins (i.e m&m's, candy..) were high in sugar because with his disease, his taste buds kind of get out of whack sometimes and things that taste good to use may be to strong tasting, too sweet, or just taste bad. We used to eat Mac & cheese with tuna (it kinda sounds gross, but it was good and we ate it a lot), but we stopped because my dad could pick up the metallica taste of the tuna fish can. We now buy the packets of tuna, but we haven't tried to see if he could eat it again. The "too sweet" phase is surprising since my dad can easily finish off a package of Oreos along with other sweets, but will say that something else is too sweet for him when its fine for my mom or I.

Vanilla Cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
yields: 1 dozen cupcakes

1/2 cup butter (1 stick), softened
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 sifted cake flour
1/4 tsp salt
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract

3 3/4 cup confectioners sugar
1 stick butter, softened
4 tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 ounces unsweetened chocolate,melted and cooled

1. Preheat oven to 350F and line muffin pan with liners.
2. Cream butter and slowly add in sugar until fluffy in a medium bowl. Add in eggs one at a time until incorporated. 
3. In another bowl, sift flour, baking powder and salt. 
4. Mix the milk and extracts in a small bowl.
5. Add flour mixture alternately with milk mixture to the butter mix, beating after each addition until smooth.
6. Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full. Bake for about 17-20 minutes of until a toothpick is inserted and comes out clean. 7. Cool in pans for 10 minutes and then remove from pans and cool completely on cooling racks.

1. In a large bowl, combine sugar, butter, milk, and vanilla. Beat on medium speed until creamy. Add in the chocolate  and beat until blended.
- If necessary add more milk 1 tbsp at a time until to get desired spreading consistency. Using either a piping bag, a spoon, or an offset spatula to frost the cupcakes.

 - I sprinkled some nonpareils sprinkles on the cupcakes before baking and it made the top really pretty.
- I only got 1 dozen regular cupcakes out of the batter instead of 1 1/2.
- My cupcakes were done at 17 minutes instead of the original 20.
-The frosting isn't as sweet as I thought it would be because of the unsweetened chocolate.
-I had some frosting leftover.
-If you want to put sprinkles on the cupcakes you have to do it right after you frost that cupcake because the frosting hardens a little. If you don't you can just put a little extra frosting on and then add the sprinkles.


  1. What a nice cupcake and frosting recipe for your dad's birthday! Beautiful!

  2. My dad is one of the most appreciative persons I have ever known...I would be happy to try these treats for his birthday this May. I am seeing the smile on his face already. Thanks for sharing=)