Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Applesauce-Spice Cupcakes

Today I tried out my first recipe from the Martha Stewart's Cupcakes book, page 55.  I measured out less sugar and added chopped green apples and raisins.  The cupcakes turned out quite nice and moist, but I think I can still cut down on the white sugar. 

Since the cupcakes were for our own sampling, I decided not to make the cream cheese frosting to keep the calories down.  They taste quite nice on their own.

I may try the Rum and Raisin cupcakes from another book tomorrow. 

Friday, March 26, 2010

Last minute cupcakes...

Today was a rather hectic day for me.  My son Ethan and I went deep water running with my physiotherapist, Gino Ng, this morning.  I opted for this twice weekly exercise because it's not weight bearing and very safe for my joints.  We had a good 50-minute aerobic and anerobic workout. 

Anyway, after DWR we had to get a few errands done and by the time I got home it was close to 4pm.  Ethan reminded me he had an ACS class reunion (he hadn't seen his Sec 4 classmates since they graduated) so I scrambled to make some chocolate cupcakes for him.  Two hours and 20 cupcakes later, he went off to the dinner.

Chocolate chips, mini M & Ms and large M & Ms!

One lesson I've learned from this last minute baking spree is ALWAYS HAVE EXTRA INGREDIENTS at home!  Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

A Rewarding Outing!

Yesterday, my husband brought me out for a lovely lunch in Johor Bahru and after that while running our errands, we stopped by a couple of bookstores to browse around.  I had wanted to get the Martha Stewart cupcakes book for a while but never had the time to go downtown to look for it and I found it in the bookstore!  I also bought another 2 books because I absolutely loved the photos! I'm in love with cupcakes!!

I made Mint Chocolate Chip cupcakes this morning for breakfast.  It was really yummy!  I omitted the mint frosting to cut down on my caloric intake...  My husband is going to teach a counselling supervision class this morning so I packed a box of cupcakes for the students.

What shall I bake tomorrow?  Stayed tuned...

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

American Carrot Cakes

Thanks SY for your response about my baking blog.  Really appreciate your kind comments! 

This afternoon I baked two American carrot cakes to be frosted with cream cheese tonight, kept in the fridge and delivered at 9am tomorrow.  Before the week catches up on me, I thought I'd better upload the photos!

My finely shredded fresh carrots.  I used lemon juice to counteract the darkening of the carrots due to the high iron content.

No, this is not sand from our neighbourhood's playground!  Rather, it's Muscovado sugar which I used quite a bit in my baking especially in my Christmas fruitcake, brownies, chocolate cake, banana cake and of course, American carrot cake.  The taste is really fine and not as sweet as refined sugar.  It's also more healthy because of the molasses content.

Californian walnuts.  Needless to say, I tasted quite a few!

Dole pineapples.  I only use this brand because it's more tart and not as sweet as the other brands.

Here's my first cake out of the oven!  I simply love the cinnamon smell, don't you?

With some batter leftover from the cake, I decided to make mini cupcakes!  I'll frost them like ordinary cupcakes and send them to a friend tomorrow.

Here's a comparison of the standard cupcake (in the middle) and the mini cupcakes.  Just one bite and we're done!  No mess, no hassle and great for those on a diet!

I'll be up again at 4am later to bake 2 apple crumble cakes.  I hope I remember to take photos!  In case you're wondering, my day job is jewelry designing!  I'm not a professional baker.  Check out my jewelry at http://www.rebeccayam.blogspot.com/.
See you tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Welcome to my baking blog!

Hi dear friends!  So glad you found your way here!  Today I had to wake up at 4am to prepare and bake 30 apple cinnamon crumble cupcakes for a young man's kindergarten class. Here are the promised photos...

Fresh ingredients are important.  I also buy the best I can available.

Here are the apples all cut up and marinated in cinnamon powder, ready to put in the middle of the cake.

Fresh chicken eggs!

The crumble mixture consists of butter, flour, sugar and of course lots of cinnamon powder!

The cake mixture rises quite well so a little batter goes a long way.  I started putting the apples in the middle of the cake, then another layer cake batter.

The crumble mixture goes on top. 

Here's my first batch out from the oven.  I always taste my baking just to make sure it's up to my standard!  It's DELICIOUS!

Here are 16 cupcakes in one box.  A fit of a fuzzy photo but you get the idea.

All boxed up, ready to make the trip to Tampines!

I had some extra cake batter and apples so decided to omit the crumble topping and layered the batter and apples twice.  Really nice and healthy!

All for now.  Got to go deliver the two boxes and then catch up on my beauty sleep before baking the American carrot cakes this afternoon!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Cupcakes or Muffins??

During the past few months I've had quite a few orders from friends who wanted me to bake cupcakes and muffins.  However, upon closer questioning of what they really wanted there seemed to be a little bit of confusion.

To me, cupcakes use cake batters and are baked in small paper cups.  They are usually light, made with butter, moist and have a pretty topping (although I sometimes omit this so it's not too sweet).  People usually eat this at tea time.  An example would be a sponge cake with butter cream frosting.

Muffins, on the other hand are more dense, heavier in texture and usually made from vegetable oil instead of butter.  They are also more breadlike and can be sweet or savoury.  Many people eat this for breakfast.  One example is banana bread (which usually tastes better the day after baking).

This week I'll be baking 30 apple crumble cakes (a light muffin cake) for a friend's son's kindergarten, 2 large apple crumble cakes and 2 large American carrot cakes for a friend's office.  The trick is in knowing how much one recipe yields and multiplying it to suit the needs.  One problem for me is knowing how much of batter to fill a cupcake paper cup so the little cakes don't overflow! 

I think I'll have to buy quite a lot of green apples and carrots today!

Have a great one!