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Saturday, February 27, 2010

Love and cupcakes...

Love and cupcakes…
There is something special about a cupcake. It’s personal. It’s individualized. It’s just for you. It’s not just a 1/12 slice of a whole other thing. It’s yours. You feel special about a cupcake. And you should. They take extra time to make, and because one is making 12 little cakes, and not one big cake, extra time in baking usually is equal to putting extra love into the baking.
This week love and cupcakes came together in a wedding. I (along with the help of a dearly devoted friend) created hundreds of cupcakes for a bride in lieu of a wedding cake. And it was an appropriate fit. These two people who married had true, genuine love for each and every guest who attended, and so the cupcake– one for each and every guest–I think, truly complimented their sentiments. They wanted each and every guest to feel special, important, and loved. (I don’t think the almond buttercream hurt either :O)

These cupcakes are divine. The recipe belongs to Ina Garten, and it lends itself brilliantly to being GF. The buttercream whirl on top is all mine. And while you don’t have to decorate yours with a big whirl, or with the buttercream at all. It’s the little tad of added love right on top.

 Cupcakes: (Makes about 12 cupcakes)
1/4 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1 (16-ounce) can chocolate syrup (recommended: Hershey's)
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup Tom Sawyer gluten free flour (or your GF flour blend)

Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, 1 at a time. Mix in the chocolate syrup and vanilla. Add the flour and mix until just combined. Don't over beat, or the cupcakes will be tough.
Line muffin pans with 12 paper liners. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
Scoop the batter into the muffin cups and bake for 30 minutes, or until just set in the middle. Don't over bake! Let the cupcakes cool thoroughly in the pan.

For the ganache glaze:
1/2 cup heavy cream
8 ounces chocolate (these can be chips, or a great dark bar)
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules (optional but recommended!)

For the ganache, heat the heavy cream, chocolate, and instant coffee in the top of a double boiler, or very gently in the microwave on short 1 minute cycles until smooth and warm, stirring occasionally. Once warm and melting, whisk until all chocolate comes together into the cream and makes the ganache.
To glaze, invert the cupcake, holding it from the bottom and dip the top of each cupcake in the ganache. Dip an twist, and then upright and you will have a perfectly smooth top! 

For the buttercream: (optional, but yummy and special)
1 stick room temperature butter
1 stick (or equal amount) shortening
1 1b. powdered sugar
1/4 tsp almond extract
2 tbs water

Whip all ingredients in a mixer until combined. Increase the speed and whip for 2 minutes until super light and fluffy.

Note: When these are refrigerated they take on a new texture. Very dense and fudgy. While equally as delicious, if serving within a day, leave covered on your counter until serving.


  1. Just found your blog and like your recipes. I have an online store for those with Food Allergies and Intolerances.We provide recipe resources to our customers through showcasing authors/bloggers. I give full credit and links to your site. I can pull pics and directions from your website. Let me know if you are interested. I look forward to hearing from you.
    Jamie Stern

  2. I'm waiting to see a Larissious cheesecake recipe....