It all started with a friend and his birthday. He said he wanted something with chocolate. So I scoured the interwebs and found Almond Joy Brownie Bites. Ummmm DELICIOUS!! Now, the recipe said to use a box to make the brownie section. But one of my biggest pet peeves in the baking blogging world is when I find recipes that have a box recipe and then some topping on it. I’m certainly not above making a cake with a box of cake mix, I just don’t think following those directions and then putting them online is blog worthy. That just never really seemed like something crazy, different or at least it’s just not what I’m looking for in recipes (you will see me defy this rule next week, but I will explain my exception then). So, back to the post, I substituted my delicious brownie recipe and just added the topping. Super easy and simple.
So my obsession, along with a lot most people, is Pinterest. I love scouring to find new recipes, my next outfit, or just general awesomeness. I refuse to call it “Pin-trest” like everyone else. I’m starting my own trend and I like to call it “Pin – interest”. It just makes more sense to me. I’m sticking with it. However, I have to admit when it comes to the desserts on Pinterest I’m a snob. I apologize in advance if this is offensive. But when I see something that looks good, click on the picture that takes me to a baking blog, and then the recipe is “1 box of yellow cake mix, 1 can of whip cream and 2 bananas”. That is not a recipe. I’m certainly no expert baker and there is still a lot of cheats I use (i.e. phyllo dough), but I at least pride myself in not using boxes of cake mix. It just drives me insane. Well this is what I came across when I saw a picture of a strawberry cupcake on top of a brownie (both made from boxes). It just drives me insane. But I was inspired, so I decided to make my own. These Banana Split Cupcake Brownies have a brownie base, a banana cupcake top with strawberry frosting. Have no fear, it may be slightly more work but is still quite easy.
So I know you all probably think I’m a scrooge or grinch from my last post. So I decided to list the things about Christmas that I do like to celebrate this day. First, the one and only Mariah Carey Christmas album with hits like “All I Want for Christmas” and “O Holy Night”. Let’s be honest. Who doesn’t like that album? I actually listen to it year round, so it isn’t technically something I like about the season, but it makes me feel less grinchy.
While thinking of different Fall treats I could make, I wanted something different. Something that would stand out against the regular pumpkin and apple pies. While the side of my family that I went to for Thanksgiving, rarely has sweet potato pie (like my other grandmother used to make) we still love sweet potatoes. So I decided to try to incorporate that into one of my desserts. After perusing the interwebs for something that looked tasty, I landed on this wonderful recipe for Sweet Potato Cupcakes.
Although the cupcakes sounded wonderful (and ended up being quite moist), I didn’t think cream cheese frosting would be as good as a marshmallow topping. So once again I went back to the web to try and find some recipes that I could play around with. However, almost every marshmallow frosting recipe out there uses Fluff. I HATE Fluff. I think it tastes weird and it slightly creeps me out. So, I went back to my Moon Pie Cookie recipe and tried to play around with the recipe I used for marshmallow filling in those cookies. I did learn a few things:
- While normally any frosting I make has some powdered sugar, when mixing it with egg whites it will not get as thick as you need it to be for frosting.
- Regular cane sugar does work in getting those peaks that are necessary for keeping the frosting in one place.
- (And this is something I should have thought of when mixing the frosting), if you make this frosting early and then try to put them on the cupcakes later in the day, despite any refrigerating and late mixing, it will not return to a form of thicker frosting.
So, while the cupcakes I gave away in the morning with the nice frosting looked nice, the cupcakes I gave after dinner did not have as decorated of a top (which you can see in the pictures). My family and I were trying to talk about how you can keep it to stay, especially since meringues stay and those are egg whites. We came to the conclusion, that if you frost the cupcakes immediately and get a kitchen torch (usually used in creme brulee) to slightly toast the marshmallow frosting, it would last longer. I haven’t had a chance to try this, but if you get a chance let me know!
For my third Wilton baking class we had to bring in cupcakes and a filling. While Nutella isn’t everyone’s favorite, if you like it you love it. I figured that inside a strawberry cupcake would be wonderful. Despite the few Nutella haters I talked to, everyone else seemed to think these would be the bee’s knees, arms and legs! Here is the recipe if you feel the same about Nutella.
I have never had a pineapple upside down cake (I’ll pause so you can all appropriately gasp, as my family did)…….but they always look delicious so I put it on my Top 26 list of things to accomplish. As much I would love to eat an entire cake by myself, people have told me that it’s not good for me. Therefore, making a pineapple upside down cake seemed like it would be hard to share. Switch that cake into cupcakes and I only eat 3 and get people who have actually had a pineapple upside down cake to critique my work. They all loved it and said it was perfect (I like to think they aren’t biased at all)!