Annnnd....after a brief (hah) 3 month hiatus, we're back! Life kind of got in the way lately (new job, play, the holidays, etc), but I can assure you that I have been baking and crafting over the past three months. I'm going to try to play catch up and post about some things I did in Nov-Feb, but for now how about something current?
My husband and I have been in a play for the past five weeks (closing is this weekend), and last weekend one of our castmates had a party. She decided to have a pot luck, so obviously I chose to bring dessert. Originally I was going to decorate the cupcakes using details from my character, but I ran out of time.
I've been wanting to try my hand at a Faux-stess cupcake (faux Hostess cupcake) for some time now. I love Hostess Cupcakes. I don't think there was ever a time when I didn't like them, but when my husband and I started going on road trips together they were the perfect treat. Two to a pack, so we could split them, and not something we ate on an every day basis.
My husband asked me to make extras (for a coworkers) birthday, so I decided to make the cupcakes in both chocolate and orange flavors (I know the Hostess site says "golden" but I swear those suckers taste orange to me).
I used a Martha Stewart 1 Bowl chocolate cake recipe for the chocolate cupcakes. I was a little iffy on the cupcakes when I put them into the oven- but holy cats were they awesome after baking! This is probably the best chocolate cupcake I have made. They were light, fluffy, and really flavorful.
For the orange cupcakes, I modified a recipe from Wilton for Golden Yellow cupcakes by using 1/2 orange extract and 1/2 vanilla extract (instead of only vanilla). They came out pretty well- light, fluffy, flavorful- but I might cut back a tiny bit on the orange if I make them again.
After baking the cupcakes (each recipe yielded 24 cupcakes), and allowing them to cool, I used the cone method to fill the cupcakes. I definitely need a little more practice with this method but it wasn't hard.
I used a recipe from Baking Bites for the filling, and while it tasted just fine, I'm not sure I would use it again. It called for thickening milk with flour over a medium burner (on the stove) and I hated that method. Just hated it. I would much rather just make a whipped cream frosting for the centers.
The cupcakes were all topped with white whipped cream frosting- because I felt they were already rich enough. Using buttercream would have pushed them over the edge to sickeningly sweet.
Everyone at the party (and my husband's work) loved them. I will definitely be making these again.
I will post a photo of the orange verson as soon as I upload it from my camera.