Monday, February 15, 2010

MSC: S'mores Cupcakes

I was excited to make these cupcakes from the start! I LOVE S'mores, so I thought they would be terrific in cupcake form.

Mary Ann of Meet Me In The Kitchen chose this month's Martha Stewart Cupcake challenge recipe.

Now, I know I said I was excited to make these cupcakes, but that doesn't mean I wasn't slightly intimidated by it. Chocolate ganache? I'd never made that. Marshmallow frosting? I'd never made that! Heck, unflavored gelatin...I'd never even BOUGHT that before! And graham flour, what the HECK is that?! But that is the point of this challenge: trying something new and different, and challenging oneself. :)

So I made my way to my favorite health food store in Denton, Cupboard Natural Foods, and bought me a package of graham flour. By the way, if you love dried papaya spears, this is THE place to buy them, they are the best!

Anyway, I'd been feeling a little under the weather, but decided that it wasn't going to keep me from making these cupcakes. I found the cupcakes very simple to make, and they smelled absolutely amazing while baking. I halved the recipe.

I also thought that the chocolate ganache glaze was fairly simple to make. It turned out smooth and glossy, just as I had imagined it would.

As for the frosting, well, I have decided that any frosting that requires preparation on the stove tends to be a little bit of a challenge for me. I think I just need more practice. After heating the water and sugar to the soft ball stage, I whisked it with the gelatin/water combo as instructed. I then put it in my stand mixer for the required amount of time. After five minutes on speed setting '6', nothing had happened. So I upped the speed to '10' and started to see some progress. But, I think I let it go for too long, because the frosting was difficult to pipe onto my cupcakes in the end. But that's okay, now I know to up the speed.

Here they are:

I haven't actually tried these yet. I'm a little nervous that they won't be good! And, I was too stuffed from last night's Valentine's Day dinner to even consider eating one of these! My co-workers will be arriving soon, and they are my usual guinea pigs. I'll update when I have some opinions from them.

On a completely random note, look at what my awesome mother-in-law got for me:

It's a t-shirt! She got it from So cute!

Be sure to check out everyone else's baking experiences! Our blog roll can be found at our MSC Cupcake Challenge website. Have a great day everyone!

UPDATE: I tried one and enjoyed the flavor of the cake very much, just like graham crackers. Since I made my frosting last night, it had turned into an actual marshmallow overnight! I thought it was pretty cool!!! And the ganache had a great flavor. I would definitely make these again, and apply the things I have learned.

Monday, February 8, 2010

To the recent anonymous commenter on this blog

I recently wrote this post about my experience making Martha Stewart's Coconut Cupcakes.

To the recent anonymous commenter on this post: you are very harsh! Here is what they said:

"They cupcakes look divine, and if you have a Kitchenaid (or other stand mixer), there is no excuse not to make 7 minute frosting. I read that the next time you make the cupcakes you'll use imitation vanilla flavouring rather than vanilla extract! I suggest if you're going to use artificial vanilla, just buy a cake mix.Also, you pointed out that you didn't like the 7 minute frosting because it actually takes 15 minutes. Well, it takes 7 minutes to cook and of course prep time is more. But if you don't like it, then go with the frosting in a can, because if you're using fake vanilla, why bother with the real frosting! I just think if you're going to make Martha Stewart's cupcakes, you may want to use the real stuff. It's not Betty Crocker or Duncan Hines - it's Martha Stewart for heaven's sake!"

I'm not really sure why you would post anonymously anyway, unless you just wanted to be rude and not be held accountable.

Using artificial is a taste preference to me, and using it is not the same as using a cake mix (at least not to me anyway).

And I'm sorry that you didn't like my opinion of the frosting, but, to each his own!

The purpose of my blog (and the Martha Stewart cupcake challenge itself) is to share one's experiences with each recipe. Not to criticize someone for using artificial vanilla and telling them that they may as well use frosting out of a can!

I guess when I openly blog about my baking experiences, I open myself up to comments like these, and I chose to approve the comment, despite it's rudeness. Who knows, maybe I shouldn't be so sensitive. Thoughts?