Monday, December 22, 2008

Chocolate Covered Cherry Cupcakes



When I was little my parents didn't give me too many sweets. The pediatrician had told them that if I didn't have them, I wouldn't develop a taste for the sweet stuff. And it all seemed to be working according to plan until I found a box of chocolate covered cherries hidden under my nana's chair when we were visiting our grandparents for Christmas. I wasn't much older than 3 when I made the discovery...which I promptly stole away with and hid out behind the chair. I was caught not too much later after my slurping sounds gave me away...but not before I bit all the tops off every chocolate covered cherry in that box! From then on I've fostered and nourished quite a sweet tooth...but chocolate covered cherries are still a favorite!


I frosted these chocolate cupcakes with a chocolate covered cherry center with dark chocolate frosting (my favorite!) Aren't they cute?



I came up with this idea for a cupcake after this month's Iron Cupcake challenge was to create something that included chocolate with a "twist." I'm not 100% satisfied with the end results so I won't actually end up entering them...I tried freezing the chocolate covered cherries but they still resulted in sticky cupcake liners. I might have to find away to get the chocolate covered cherry taste without taking the easy route of actually using chocolate covered cherries!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Christmas Sweets

Gift giving can get out of control easily. And this year, moreso than years past, I've really been making an effort to cut back and cut costs. So I've been doing a lot of baking for some yummy homemade gifts...really, I think it is just as nice to get something that shows someone invested time rather than money!

These are some of the cupcakes I made to pass out to my coworkers as Christmas gifts. I got individual cupcake boxes to put each one and everyone seemed to think that was super-cute! I had intended to make Red Velvet cake with Cream Cheese Frosting...but that tanked (don't ask)....so instead we ended up with Spice cake with Cream Cheese Frosting.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Happy 1st Birthday, Deacon!

Just look at this cute "pup"cake I ordered from Pookie's Bowwow Bakery for Deacon's big day! Maybe I should have gone into the doggie baking business...


Friday, October 31, 2008

Crazy Eyes

Happy Halloween!! I made these crazy eye cupcakes for my office Halloween party. They were fun to make and even better to eat.

There have been so many creative Halloween cupcakes ideas online, in magazines, etc this year. The little cupcake has been making quite a comeback!! I'm amazed by the number of blogs devoted completely to this sweet treat! I first saw this particular idea for scary eye cupcakes on Epicurious and liked the simplicity of the decorations. The green and yellow lifesavers made for the best scary eyes in my opinion!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Faux-stess Cupcakes

Growing up, I was definitely one of the kids that packed lunch (well...I really should say I was one of the kids fortunate enough to have a mom that didn't want me eating pizza, chicken patties or french fries on a daily basis). The highlight of every lunch period was getting to the bottom of the brown bag and finding some kind of delicious Hostess treat! I always loved the cupcakes and the HoHos....while I might have finagled a trade for the pretzels or sandwich I had on any given day...I never parted with the snackcake. Never.

So as I continue to try new-to-me ideas for cupcake recipes, creating my own version of that tasty little cupcake seemed like a good idea. Here is my "faux-stess" cupcake...complete with filling! I used a cream cheese and chocolate chip filling to spice it up a bit. It never hurts to add cream cheese and/or chocolate chips!


Speaking of Hostess...have you tried these little guys? Really quite tasty for just 100 calories!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Mocha Cupcakes

We were finally in town this weekend which gave me the opportunity to try out another idea for a cupcake. I LOVE coffee and even had a short-lived stint as a barista with Starbucks when I first moved to Orlando. I just love everything about coffee...the smell, the taste....but most importantly, coffee, to me, means good company and good conversation. My mom shares my penchant for the beverage so having a cup of coffee will always remind me of being home and sharing a cup or two with her. And I've converted my husband to the darkside too! Just about the time I got him dependent on the stuff, I decided we needed to go caffeine-free! Oops.


So this weekend, I wanted to try to come up with a mocha cupcake. I had in mind to make a dark chocolate and coffee flavored cake with a chocolate frosting. I realize that not everyone is as big a fan of coffee as I am...and I definitely lean towards the extra bold, strongest coffee you can find...so I tried to keep that in mind as I mixed my latest concoction.






I ended up with a very rich tasting chocolate cupcake...much less coffee flavor than I had hoped. My taste testers who don't really like coffee (I don't understand it either) loved these little treats which tells you something. So next time I think I'll up the amount of coffee flavor I use in the batter just slightly and I'll focus on adding coffee to the frosting as well.

I had hoped to pick up chocolate covered espresso beans to top these cupcakes, but couldn't find them at the store this weekend. I did, however, find Mocha flavored M&M Premiums.

Do yourself a favor and pick up a pack of these. They are AMAZING! They lack the candy shell of your typical M&M and are almost like little tiny truffles. The pretty bronze and brown coloring looked festive on the cupcakes too. Pace yourself though...they are as addictive as their plain predecessor but way richer!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Baby Fabulous

It has been pretty baby fabulous among my friends lately! We've had several new little ones making their debut and several more celebrating their first birthday! So fun! I don't need too much inspiration to bake cupcakes, so it didn't take me long to find some adorable baby cupcake toppers!




Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Halloween

Now that the first day of Fall has come and gone, and since all the local stores have their Christmas decorations out, I figured I should go ahead and post some creepy, crawly Halloween cupcakes!






Monday, September 22, 2008

Cookie Dough

Just when I thought I had found my favorite cupcake flavor (chocolate orange), I decided to drop some cookie dough into the mix...and the results were amazing! It's like two treats in one!



These were decorated for a Wake Forest football party this weekend! Go Deacs!!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Peanut Butter Cup

Who doesn't love the combination of chocolate and peanut butter? OK, maybe a few of you with allergies out there. These rich, chocolate cakes have a peanut butter cup baked right in. I liked it best with the light, creamy peanut butter frosting...but dark chocolate frosting was great with it too!





I thought the monogram idea would be good for a housewarming gift...so I took a batch to my recently relocated sister!


Caramel Apple Cupcakes


These cupcakes were almost as fun to make as they were to eat! They are a delicious apple spice cake, topped with gooey caramel sauce and chopped walnuts. Guaranteed to make a mess but they are completely worth it!






Chocolate Orange Cupcakes

One of my favorite flavor combinations is chocolate and orange. I LOVE the Terry's Chocolate Oranges and have a real weakness for those chocolatey orange segments. If you've never tried one, you really need to! A Christmas stocking just isn't complete without one!

The Chocolate Orange was my inspiration for these cupcakes. I loved the subtle orange flavor that resulted and my first attempt at dark chocolate frosting was a success...and a great accompaniment!


Candy Acorns


We may not have beautiful Fall foliage in Florida...but we do have tons of oak trees and tons of acorns! So while I can't take the puppy for a walk through crunching leaves, I make the most of the crunching acorns! Which probably explains all the oak tree shoots in random flower beds in our neighborhood...


Fall Leaves


You don't see too many changing leaves in the land of palm trees this time of year...we just have to make our own! These cupcakes are a simple, yellow cake with chocolate frosting and adorable sugar fall leaves!



Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

It is still brutally hot here in the sunshine state....but the calendar says September which makes me think of fall and changing leaves and cooler weather!


Welcome to Christie's Cupcakes!


Confession: I have a serious sweet tooth.


After realizing that I wasn't the only one that suffered from this "affliction," I decided to launch Christie's Cupcakes!


From classic yellow cake to pink lemonade, here you'll find all things cupcakes to help inspire you to celebrate all the sweet moments of life!
I'm hoping this blog will serve as a catalog for the fun recipes and decorating ideas I come across. After living in NYC with easy access to Magnolia Bakery and Soho Cupcake, I just can't live without these petit treats! I love baking for family and friends and will use any excuse possible to hang out in the kitchen trying new things!