On a whim, I took a cupcake decorating class, and was hooked!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Long time no post!

I have been doing the baking thing, but not so much the taking-pictures and posting-to-blog thing.  I've been making cupcakes, for the most part, but also cookies of various kinds.  I especially enjoyed the oatmeal-craisin-raisin-walnut cookies from a recipe I found on the internet somewhere, but neglected to note the website.  I just cut the raisins back and added low-sugar craisins.  I think it came out to be over a cup of raisiny things, but who's counting?

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

1  cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1  cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2  cup granulated sugar
2  eggs
1  teaspoon vanilla
1-1/2  cups all-purpose flour
1  teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1  teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2  teaspoon salt
3  cups oats (quick or old fashioned, uncooked)
1  cup raisins

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Cream butter and sugars in a mixer until creamy, approximately 3 minutes.  Add eggs and vanilla and beat for another 2 minutes.  Add flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt and continue to mix until the dough has come together.  Add oats and raisins/nuts until mix until raisins are distributed.  Drop by rounded tablespoons or cookie scoop onto cookie sheet and bake for 12-15 minutes or until edges are golden brown.  Remove from oven and allow the cookies to remain on cookie sheet for 3 minutes before moving to a cooling rack. 
I also made a batch of pumpkin cookies that my Aunt Wanda (see beginning post!) used to make at Christmas time.  I love making those cookies, and they're so tasty.  Rounded off cookie land with some chocolate chip and sea-salt cookies from Alice's recipe.  Fantastic, as always!  
In cupcake land, I've been so enthralled with Scharffen Berger cocoa powder that I've been making yellow cake cupcakes and chocolate buttercream out the wazoo.  I can't get over how fantastic this cocoa is, and I've ordered this through "Subscribe and Save" at Amazon for quarterly deliveries.  The rich chocolate flavor can't be beat, and I've discovered that the cocoa is made in the USA!  Pretty awesome.
I'm also pretty sure I've discovered why my cupcake liners flop open sometimes.  I think it's because I may be leaving them in the pan too long.  I'm going to try cooling them in the pan for just a couple minutes, then removing them from the pan and cooling the rest of the way on the wire rack.  I think that will do the trick!  The only problem is to keep the cats from eating the cupcakes while they're cooling.  I wish I were kidding!
Next step, I think, will be to hollow out the cupcake and fill it with chocolate, then put chocolate icing on top.  Or is that too much chocolate, do you think?