|CL's Birthday Cupcakes|
The year 2009 has seen me being quite active (and productive) in the kitchen, testing out recipes from 500 Cupcakes & Muffins by Fergal Connolly. Some were quite successful, some were rather a mess if not borderline disastrous.
Out of the few recipes I've tried, my favorite would be the Peanut Butter Cupcakes. Not only because peanut butter is a favorite among many people, but also because the recipe is quite easy, providing one with little room for failure. The recipe always yields a batch of fluffy, fragrant, and moist cupcakes -good eaten as is without any icing. I topped these babies with runny peanut butter icing (made from icing sugar, butter, and peanut butter) to create rustic homemade looking cupcakes.
In order to finish the jar of Skippy (I always use the chunky one because I love the added crunch), I made a few batch in the stretch of a few weekends. All were always accepted delightfully by my friends and colleagues.
For CL's birthday that December, I decided to bake some of these nutty treats for her. Half of the batch went to my colleagues in the form of mini X'mas Cupcakes. I also experimented a bit and made Hazelnut Chocolate Cupcakes using the same recipe, by substituting the peanut butter with hazelnut chocolate spread (most famous would be Nutella but I used a local brand, Ceres, because they have the chunky version).
The batter didn't turn out with the same consistency because the hazelnut spread was more runny than the peanut butter, but thankfully, the cupcakes still tasted yummy. I topped them off with hazelnut chocolate icing (made with the same ingredients as peanut butter icing). As a final touch, both cupcakes were topped with pink and gold sprinkles to create a more festive (birthday-ish) look.
For the X'mas version, I topped the cupcakes with red/green/white sprinkles. Everyone who received it was happy and jolly. Ho ho ho...