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Monthly Competition #1

31 Aug

It’s finally here.  The first ever Monthly Competition!  I am so excited!!

Check out the video below to see our Cupcake Panel devour, judge and choose the Monthly Champ for August!

Here were the 4 competitors for August (Photography done by Danicah Waldo Photography)

Week 1 – Toffee Crunch Cupcakes

Toffee Crunch Cupcake

Week 2 – Lemon Cloud Cupcakes

Lemon Cloud Cupcake

Week 3 – Peanut Butter & Jelly Cupcakes

Peanut Butter and Jelly Cupcake

Week 4 – Milk & Chocolate Chip Cookie Cupcakes

Milk & Chocolate Chip Cookie Cupcake

(note: my French is apparently not as good as I hoped…gamine is pronounced with a hard g — like goat — so it’s actually gameen when you sound it out.  Thanks Jon T. for letting me know.  I’ll keep working on my French, you guys keep enjoying the video.)

Thanks again to Erin Baltsar, Alex Tripp and Danicah Waldo – Our August Cupcake Panel, and to (my hubby) Ken for filming, editing and original music!

Cupcake Panel

Check back tomorrow when I begin September’s Cupcakes!

Day 31 – Fall Acorn Cupcakes (Vegan)

31 Aug

End of the line.  Well, end of the month at least.  So, later today I’ll announce the very first Monthly Winner.  I’m.  So.  Excited!!  I can’t wait for you to see it!!

But, now I’m here to talk about the last day of August.  My first “other” cupcake.  It still gets a grade, but it won’t be part of the monthly or overall competition.  The first one I chose is these Fall Acorn Cupcakes (recipe from Easy Baked).  They are so cute!  I couldn’t resist.

Vegan-Chocolate-Cupcake     Mini Vegan-Chocolate-Cupcake

The cupcakes have a nice color and texture.  Dense and moist.  Not an overly exciting taste.  Not as chocolatey as I was expecting (or wanted).  The full-size has a better flavor, but the cocoa powder doesn’t allow for as strong a chocolate flavor.

Vegan-Vanilla-Buttercream

The frosting is thick and extremely easy to pipe!  It has a decent, sweet vanilla flavor.  The shortening gives it a strange aftertaste.  The recipe had called for butter, but I wanted to make it completely vegan, so I subbed shortening.

Vegan-Acorn-Cupcake     Mini-Vegan-Acorn-Cupcake

They are definitely better together than they are separate.  A decent cupcake, despite whatever your feelings are on vegan.  But, whether that’s your choice or your necessity, these are a good option. (Note: the decoration is not vegan, but it is very cute.  And, you don’t have to eat it, so you could still use it.  Or, get creative with other ingredients to make a similar vegan-friendly version.)

I would try them again with a different ingredient for frosting.  This is the first time I’ve ever attempted anything vegan, so I’m not terribly familiar with butter substitutes.  If you have any suggestions, please leave a comment, I’d love to know!!

Scoring Sheet:

– Cupcake Taste: 3

– Frosting Taste: 2

– Overall Taste: 3

– Appearance: 5 (seriously.  That decoration is soooo cute!)

– Ease of Making: 4

– TOTAL: 17

RECIPE (from Easy Baked)

INGREDIENTS: (makes about 24 cupcakes)

  • 3 cups of flour
  • 2 cups of sugar
  • 1/2 cup of cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons of vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3/4 cups oil
  • 2 c. water

For acorns:

FROSTING: (I made this with shortening instead of butter, to stick with the Vegan thing)

Ingredients:

  • 1 stick (4 oz.)of salted butter (room temp)
  • 1 stick (4 oz.)of unsalted butter (room temp)
  • 1 1/2 c. powdered sugar
  • 3 t. vanilla (use clear if you want white frosting)

For directions visit Easy Baked.

*Tomorrow: Sour Cream Vanilla Cupcakes*

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