Sweet treat for my sweetie

Today is my hubby’s birthday.  We have celebrated his last 16 birthdays together.  *Sigh* I love him.  I’m so blessed to have him in my life.

To help kick off his big day, I made some yummy cupcakes for him to take to work.  Traditionally the birthday guy or gal brings in donuts or bagels to share, but I didn’t think they’d mind cupcakes. I was right.  They snatched these up almost as soon as they were set on the counter!

So what are these yummy sweets?  Well, they are Snickers cupcakes. Chocolate cupcakes filled with caramel sauce and chopped Snickers bars, topped with caramel buttercream, more chopped Snickers, and caramel drizzle. It was a lot of work, but so worth it for my guy.

Snickers filling

Snickers cupcakes

I have been keeping this recipe in my file for a while now.  I have never made caramel sauce, so my fear kept me from making it.  Silly me.  Turns out caramel isn’t so hard after all.  At least not with the guidance of a professional. This caramel sauce is delicious.  Tastes just like a Werthers!  Very toffee-like. Blends perfectly with the candy bar.  You can find the recipe for these at the wonderful food blog – www.annies-eats.com.  I bet you could easily replace the Snickers with Twix or Milky Way and it would be just a wonderful.

Stay sweet,

Kate

Easter Bunny Cupcakes

Last year I was inspired to make Sweet Sugar Belle’s (she has an amazing website!) Bunny Cupcakes -you can find them here –http://www.sweetsugarbelle.com/blog/2011/03/bunny-ear-cupcake-toppers/.  Talk about cute!  I was making a dessert for our church’s Friday Fish Fry and wanted to really wow them.  I think these did the trick!  Here is my version –  I must admit these were very time-consuming, but really worth the effort.  I used a bunny head cookie cutter and cut off the bottom part of the face (sorry bunny!), leaving just the ears and a small part of the head.  The cookie sinks into the frosting so you need a little extra. I froze the cut dough before baking to help them resist spreading in the oven.  Meh, it didn’t work as well as I hoped, but the ears turned out okay still.   I used royal icing to outline and flood the ears, waited for them to dry overnight, and then using a pink edible ink marker, drew in the pink centers. I think if I do it again I will use pink royal icing instead.  I “glued” popsicle sticks to the back of the ears using royal icing.  Once dry, they were ready to be inserted into the frosted cupcakes.  Add eyes and ears, mine were sprinkles I dug out of sprinkle mixes, and you are done!   I just love the pink heart noses!  Check out the directions and photos on Sugar Belle’s site for a detailed explanation and a photo of what good cookies look like.  Mine are a little rough.  They did taste good though, so there’s that.  Hee hee.

I am making dessert for another Fish Fry this week.  Trying to decide between coconut cupcakes with little bird’s nests on top or vanilla cupcakes with royal icing daffodils.  Hmmmm decisions, decisions…I will keep you posted.

Sunshine on a cloudy day

I adore lemons.  Just cutting or zesting one fills the air with a sweet smell and immediately lifts my spirits.  Sometimes I will buy one just to cut it up and put it down my disposal.  Cleans and freshens the disposal and makes the kitchen smell great, too.  Oranges work well for that, too.  One of my favorite drinks is lemonade with fresh strawberries or cherries smashed in the glass. And my mom’s lemon squares, hold me back!!  I look forward to those every Christmas.  I am drooling just thinking about these lemony treats.  Yummers.

 So, I happened upon a big bag of lemons at my local warehouse store last weekend.  They were so bright and yellow and summery, I just had to buy them.  I convinced myself that unlike the other lemons I have bought over the winter, these would not go bad before I made something delicious with them.  Seriously, who knew lemons could get moldy?!?  Clearly, not me.

I gathered my lemon recipes and pinned some new ones to my Pinterest board.  Everything from lemon garlic chicken to lemon curd to homemade Limoncello.  I am going to use all of these lemons in the next week.  I am determined!  First on my list were these light, lemony cupcakes based on this recipe – http://the-cupcakery-blog.blogspot.com/2008/02/week-8-lemon-cupcakes-with-lemon-kissed.html .  I did tweak it to my taste just a bit.   This is just a personal preference.  These are seriously delicious.   The original recipe is amazing, so I thought it best to give you that.  After all someone else put in all the hard work to create it.  You will love them.  Promise.  If you decide to tweak them, it should be to your taste.

So here are my lemon cupcakes with lemon buttercream and lemon zest sprinkles.  I hope the lovely ladies at PTU and hubby’s co-workers will enjoy them.  Too dangerous to keep at home, but I am saving one for breakfast tomorrow.  There is a new study that says cake for breakfast is a good thing.  Seriously!  True statement!  You can look it up.