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This is a special dedication for Dani 😀

I thought cupcakes were overrated.  They’re pretty, easy to make and  incredibly versatile (which i approve), they’re a great treat that any home baker can make, but i  was never a fan because i don’t approve of flashy colors in food, and natural colors are never that strong or pleasant.

and to reinforce my previous statement, a week or so ago, i had to make a cake using artificial food coloring, black, to be more precise. i accidentally spilled some of it on my elbow skin (Don’t ak) and it took nearly three days to completely wash off. and i did scrub, with a ponce stone (?!) to obtain a slightly lighter shade of dark red/purple, i’m not sure because my skin was itchy and red from all the scrubbing.

now, imagine if all that shit would be ingested. how do you scrub it off the interior of your own body? 😀

that was black food coloring, and black is stronger than all, but a lot of food coloring goes into a lot of sweets (cuz it’s sweets we’re talking about), msotly frosting and icing but also the shells of macarons that so many ppl enjoy. of course, moderation is key, but long term, food coloring should not be encouraged. i know there are other harmful stuff, but food coloring is one that can easily be avoided. (however, i do sometimes use it myself, bits of it, most often for macarons and a few times for sugar paste. sugar paste is another thing i don’t quite enjoy working with 😀 but this is another story).

the second reason why i just couldn’t feel any desire for cupcakes is …. BUTTERCREAM (that most cupcakes out there have on top).

i understand it’s cheap, quick and reliable. but there are a lot more options out there that are healthier, just as pretty and far better tasting. and if you’re going to use buttercream, why not do a swiss meringue buttercream, a lot more stable, smoother and just a bit lighter.

now it’s time i stopped berating those using food coloring and buttercream for cupcakes and move on to the positives.

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When i think of cupcakes i think color, joy, sprinkles and Martha Stewart (i was really young when i watched a TV show of Martha baking a batch of these tiny things and then frosting with dollops of buttercream and sprinkles, and they were new to me, tehy weren’t popular in romania at the time, and by the time the show was over, i had to wipe the drool off my face).

So here it is, a cupcake recipe adapted from Martha’s vanilla cupcakes. (my quantities make 24-30 mini cupcakes, and 12-15 large cupcakes) that i topped with blueberry ganache, dark chocolate ganache, caramel swiss meringue buttercream and lemon swissmeringue buttercream.

Ingredients

– 92 g butter (room temperature)

– 135 g powdered sugar

– 2 eggs (separated, room temperature)

– 90 g room temperature sour cream (can be replaced with milk+few lemon drops, in which case, increase the butter to 113 g)

– 150 g flour (i use a type of flour that has 8.8 g protein/100 g, the lower the protein, the fluffier the cake)

– 4 g sodium bicarbonate

Preparation

1. turn your oven at, needs to be preheated to 180 degrees C and line your cupcake pan with paper liners

2. sift the flour and bicarbonate together

3.  cream the butter and powdered sugar till pale and fluffy

4. add the yolks one by one, this will be the wet mix

5. turn off the mixer and whip the egg whites with a pinch of salt and few drops of lemon (make sure the whisk and bowl are clean, no traces of fat) whip them whites till really foamy

5. add half the flour to the wet mix and mix slowly till it’s slightly incorporated, add the sourcream/milk, and mix just a bit, add the rest of the flour and incorporate

6. add the egg whites and fold the batter till no more traces of whites on teh surface, don’t overmix .

Fill the moulds with the batter three quarters up and bake for 15-20 minutes till toothpick comes out clean. they should grow tiny domes, that’s a good thing 😀

In order to decorate, i made several fillings, including swiss meringue buttercream.

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Blueberry white chocolate ganache 

– 100 g white chocolate

– 100 g heavy cream

– 30-50 g blueberry puree (mash the blueberries with a spoonful of sugar, few lemon drops, bring to a boil, reduce it a bit till it thickens and you’re done. i strained mine cuz whole blueberry pieces don’t go through my piping bag, but this step can be skipped, for more texture)

Preparation

1. bring the heavy cream to a simmer, till it bubbles on the edges at least

2. pour over the chocolate, wait a bit, mix well till it thickens up a bit

3. add the blueberry puree and mix

4. this is important, needs to be chilled in the fridge for 1 h, or shoved in teh freezer till it cools completely. if it’s not cooled entirely, there’s a chance it will split

5. when it’s entirely cooled, whip it till it keeps its shape, might take 5 minutes, 10 minutes, depending on your mixer.

in order to ‘decorate’ i made a little hole in the cupcake top, poured some blueberry puree inside and topped it with whipped ganache.

For the swiss meringue buttercream i used Andie’s recipe.

i split that into two parts, added caramel sauce to half of it and lemon curd to the other.

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Cupcakes, versiunea mini

Cu dedicație specială pentru Dani : D

Pe scurt, mie nu mi-o placut in mod special cupcakesii niciodata. Majoritatea folosesc coloranti si crema de unt, si eu nu m-am deranjat sa fac pana acum cateva zile. si daca tot am zis ca fac, am zis sa caut o reteta care sa-mi placa si mie, si sa obtin ceva pufos, umed si aromat.

Când mă gândesc la prajiturile astea, ma gandesc la culori vesele, dragute si…  Martha Stewart (pe ea am vazut-o facand cupcakes intr-o emisiune prima data.)

Asadar, am luat o reteta de cupcakes clasice (cu vanilie) de la ea de pe blog si am adaptat-o putin. ( Cantitățile is pentru 24-30 mini prajiturele , și 12-15 cupcakes mari)

La capitolu creme am facut ganache de ciocolata alba si afine , ganache de ciocolata neagra , crema de unt cu bezea elvetiana cu caramel si lamaie.

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Ingrediente

– 92 g unt (la temperatura camerei )

– 135 g de zahăr pudră

– 2 oua (separate , temperatura camerei )

– 90 g smantana la temperatura camerei ( poate fi înlocuita cu lapte + cateva picaturi de lamaie , caz în care , se creste cantitatea de unt la 112 g )

– 150 g faina ( eu folosesc un tip de faina care are 8,8 g proteină/100 g , cu cat faina are mai putin gluten, cu atat iese prajitura mai pufoasa)

– 4 g bicarbonat de sodiu

Preparare

1 . Se incalzeste cuptorul la 180 de grade C și se pregateste tava de briose cu hartii pentru briose

2 . se cerne faina si bicarbonatul împreună

3 . untul+zahărul pudră se mixeaza cu un tel sau cu mixerul pana se deschid la culoare si se aereaza

4 . se adauga galbenusurile unul cate unul , acesta va fi amestecul umed

5 . opriți mixerul și bateti albusurile spuma cu putina zeama de lamaie si sare, pana isi mentin forma cat de cat. aveti grija sa fie vasu curat si telu sau bratele mixerului

5 . se adauga jumătate din faina la amestecul umed și se amestecă încet, până nu se mai vad urme de faina apoi se adauga smantana/laptele si se amesteca putin, apoi restul de faina

6 . la sfarsit se adaugă albușurile de ou și se amesteca pana nu se mai vad urme de albus, nu foarte mult, nu amestecati prea mult, ca o sa iasa un aluat elastic si nu-i de bine, iese tare prajitura

se umplu formele cu aluat cam trei sferturi (o sa se umfle la copt)  si se coc timp de 15-20 de minute, pana scobitoarea iese curata .

pentru decor, eu am pus crema de ciocolata alba si iafine, crema de unt cu bezea elvetiana cu caramel si crema de lamaie.

Ganache de ciocolata alba cu afine

– 100 g ciocolată albă

– 100 g smantana pentru frisca

–  30-50 g piure afine  ( 100 g afine cu 20 g de zahar , cateva picaturi de lamaie , se aduc la fierbere , se reduc un pic pana se ingroasa și ați terminat, eu am strecurat piureu pentru crema ca sa fiu sigura ca pot sa ornez cu crema, dar pasu poate fi omis)

Preparare

1 . se incalzeste smantana la foc mic , până se formeaza bule pe margini

2 . se toarnă peste ciocolata , se lasa putin, se amesteca bine pana se ingroasa un pic

3 . se adauga piureul de afine și se amestecă

4 . se lasa la frigider pana se raceste, MUSAI sa fie rece inainte sa o bateti cu telu/mixeru, altfel se poate taia. merge bagata si la congelator daca va grabiti, cel mai bine o faceti cu o seara inainte si o lasati la frgider (dureaza 5 minute).

5 . atunci când este răcita complet , se bate pana isi păstrează forma , ar putea dura 5 minute, 10 minute , în funcție de mixerul sau viteza de amestecare .

Pentru decorare, eu am scos o bucatica mica de aluat din fiecare cupcake in parte, am pus fiertura de afine, apoi crema cu un pos si dui de 1 cm. pe celelalte am pus crema de unt cu bezea elvetiana si am decorat cu sprit in forma de stea inchisa (parca asa se numeste). noh in fine, eu daca n-as avea nici un dui sau sprit, as taia o punga la un capat intr-o forma mai ciudata si as strange de aia 😀 sau cu lingura

Pentru crema de unt cu bezea elvetiana am folosit reteta lui Andie .

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