Saturday, January 26, 2013

The Cutest Mini Red Velvet Cupcakes

So, I have a confession to make.

I don't like chocolate cake that much. I know, I know. What's wrong with me? There's something about it. I mean, I might crave it on a very, very rare occasion. 

The only type of chocolate cake I really, truly love is red velvet. And we all know that cupcakes are always better than regular cake. 

Yesterday I got home from class and didn't feel like getting to my homework immediately (still haven't gotten to that feeling yet, ever). I decided to make red velvet cupcakes instead. 

After searching for about ten minutes for the perfect recipe, I found this recipe. I tweaked it a little (what's new?)

Y'all. They were PERFECT. The consistency of the cupcake was so smooth and soft, and I used my personal favorite cream cheese frosting to top them off. This is now my go-to recipe for red velvet. 

Adapted from The Boastful Baker

Mini Red Velvet Cupcakes

Yields: 36 adorably mini cupcakes


1/2 cup buttermilk (1/2 cup milk plus 1 tsp white vinegar)
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1 tsp red food coloring
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tbsp cocoa powder

Best Ever Cream Cheese Frosting

1 (8 oz) block cream cheese, slightly softened
5 tbsp butter (slightly softened-- pliable but not room temperature)
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups powdered sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit. Line the mini muffin pans with 36 mini cupcake papers. 

2. Mix the buttermilk, vegetable oil, egg, food coloring, and vanilla extract with a hand mixer on the lowest setting until it's well incorporated. 

It looks like I had a red egg.

3. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, sugar, baking soda, and cocoa powder. Add the dry ingredients slowly to the wet ingredients with the hand mixer until there are no more lumps. 

4. Using a cookie scoop, scoop the batter into the mini cupcake papers, filling each one up almost 3/4 of the way up. 

Super out of focus. Sorry, guys. 

5. Tap the filled muffin pans lightly on the counter a few times to get the bubbles out. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes, or until they bounce back up when you touch the top. (You can also test with a toothpick but I always just touch the top. If your finger leaves a dent, they're not ready.)

6. Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, combine the cream cheese and butter. Whip until it's light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and mix. Really slowly, add the powdered sugar while the mixer is going. Mix it until it's really smooth and fluffy. 

7. Tape the corner of a quart-sized bag (for reinforcement), then cut the corner off about 1/2 inch from the very tip. Insert a decorator's star tip. Add the frosting to the bag and decorate the cupcakes once they've cooled. Add sprinkles (because sprinkles make everything happier). 

Haha! Thanks for helping with the eating process, Haley!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Oreo Cheesecake Bites and The Bachelor

I've never watched The Bachelor before this season. When I saw that this season's bachelor, Sean, is from Arlington, Texas, I couldn't resist watching. That's about twenty minutes from my house!

That is one fine man. 

So my apartment floor was having a Bachelor party tonight because it was Monday night and we all share a guilty pleasure for watching The Bachelor. 

I figured I should bring something sweet for us to eat while we watch. 

I bought Oreos a few weeks ago, but instead of the normal Double Stuff ones, I bought chocolate-filled Oreos, which are not nearly as good as the Double Stuff ones. I decided to use them in a recipe since they weren't that great on their own. 

I found a recipe for Oreo Cheesecake Bites. I sort of used the recipe on the link provided, but I definitely made some modifications. They were AMAZING. They were even tasty enough to get me through all the stupidity Tierra put us through tonight. 

Oreo Cheesecake Bites

Yields: about 50 cheesecake bites (It makes one 9x13 pan, so you can cut them however small or large you want to. I wanted them to go a long way)


20 Oreos
4 tbsp butter, melted

3 8 oz. packages of cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup sour cream
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs plus 1 egg yolk
16 Oreos

1/4 cup white chocolate chips
1 tbsp vegetable oil


1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. Line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper, leaving the parchment large enough to go up two of the sides  to allow for easier removal.

3. Smash 20 Oreos to smithereens in a gallon ziplock. Add the melted butter and squish it all around. Make sure all of the Oreos have some of the butter on them so they stick together. Press the mixture into the pan. Bake for 10 minutes.

4. Beat the cream cheese in a bowl until it's light and fluffy. Add the sugar and make sure it's completely incorporated. Add the sour cream, vanilla, and salt. 

5. Add the eggs and scrape down the bowl. Make sure everything is completely mixed with no chunks. 

6. Crush the remaining 16 Oreos (not completely smashed, just broken up into pieces). Gently stir them into the cream cheese mixture.

7. Pour this onto the Oreo crust. Bake for 40 minutes, or until it's slightly jiggly in the center. 

8. Put it in the fridge for at least two hours. Run a knife around the edge and use the parchment paper to remove it from the pan. Cut into desired size (I did about 1.5x1.5). Make sure to wipe the knife on a paper towel between each cut. 

9. Melt the white chocolate and add a little bit of vegetable oil to smooth it out. Put it into a sandwich baggie and cut the very teeny tip off of the corner. Drizzle the chocolate on each square in a decorative pattern. Let the chocolate harden in the refrigerator for about 5 minutes. Enjoy!

I'm still rooting for Sarah. Here's to Tierra being kicked off next week!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Brown Butter Banana Bread

I love to bake foods that use up leftover things. French toast, bread pudding, and banana bread are the tastiest ways to reduce waste in the kitchen.

So we had these bananas that were... um, vintage. All I'm saying is that if these bananas were people, they would be living in a nursing home and asking for a sponge bath every night while talking of the "good ol' days."

These are the most photogenic bananas, turned to their most beautiful angle. The others were completely black and were indiscernible as bananas. Welcome to college.

One thing I would like to say is that brown butter is the best thing ever

My whole apartment has a delicious nutty smell right now and I keep just pausing and taking a long moment to sniff the air... Yeah. Definitely addicted. 

I modified this recipe from La Casa de Sweets

Brown Butter Banana Bread

Yields: Two 9x5 loaves ***This time I made two 8x4 loaves plus one mini loaf.***

Banana bread:

2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter
3 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups sugar
5-6 of your most overly-ripe, disgusting bananas
4 tbsp milk
2 tsp vanilla extract

Pan lining:

1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

Crumble topping:

1/2 cup flour
4 tbsp sugar
4 tbsp light brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
4 tbsp butter, very slightly softened and cut into cubes


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit. Grease the pans. Mix the pan lining sugar and cinnamon. Coat the inside of the pans with the cinnamon-sugar.

2. Melt the butter on medium heat and let it bubble until it begins to turn brown. Mine always stops bubbling and just looks foamy when it's done. Just don't burn it! It should smell nutty and pleasant when it's barely done. Remove from heat.

3. While the butter is browning, mix together the crumble topping. I always use my beloved pastry cutter, but you can use a fork to mix the crumble.

4. Mix together the flour, salt, baking soda, and cinnamon.

5. Whisk together the eggs and sugar. Beat it with the whisk until it becomes a pale yellow, nearly white. Whisk in the brown butter.

6. In a separate bowl, mash together your peeled bananas. Add them to the brown butter mixture. Add in the milk and vanilla.

7. Evenly distribute the batter between the prepared pans and top with the crumble topping.

8. Bake 9x5 loaves for 1 hour, 8x4 loaves for 50-55 minutes, and mini loaves for 35 minutes.

It's super moist and delicious! I think the brown butter makes it, honestly. All banana bread is good, but brown butter banana bread is YUMMOLICIOUS. 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Best Ever Chocolate Chip Muffins

I have a three hour art class on Tuesday nights.

It's at the most inconvenient time, from 5-8, so if I eat before it's awkwardly early, but if I wait until after, my stomach loudly growls the entire class period, making me sound like an angry zoo animal.

So, while I was in class today, I kept craving chocolate chip muffins.

No, not just normal chocolate chip muffins. I wanted the kind that has the yummy streusely-sugar top that gives just enough crunch to make your mouth water.

I searched high and low (okay, I googled) for a recipe that would satisfy my cravings. I didn't find any that exactly matched, but I modified this one to make it work for me.


Best Ever Chocolate Chip Muffins

Yields: 12 muffins


2 cups AP flour
1/2 cup sugar
3 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups dark chocolate chips
1 egg, beaten
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil

3 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp brown sugar

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a muffin tin with 12 muffin papers.

2. Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and chocolate chips.

3. In a separate bowl, combine the beaten egg, milk, and vegetable oil.

4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until just incorporated.

5. Scoop into the lined muffin pan with a cookie scoop.

6. Stir together the brown sugar and white sugar until it's mixed. Sprinkle this evenly on all the muffins.

7. Bake at 400 for 20-23 minutes.

Sorry for the bad quality pictures, y'all. I have homework to do. 

Craving--- Fulfilled.