Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Lemon Pomegranate Cupcakes with Pomegranate Buttercream

Cupcake Palooza 2016 Day 7

One of my most requested cupcakes is Raspberry Lemon. I think that no matter what the weather is outside people like to have that little taste of summer. However, in the winter raspberries are hideously expensive and when you are doing 10 dozen cupcakes at a time that makes a hit on the wallet. Enter pomegranates. I love them, I remember eating them at recess in elementary school with my friends and taking turns picking out the seeds. It was a fun treat and always brings fun memories of my childhood. An added bonus is some enterprising soul decided to make pomegranate juice and sell it at every grocery store on the planet. Well thank you very much, that makes my frosting so much easier!

Things I learned.
  1. Pomegranates aren't that hard to seed once you get the hang of it.
  2. Pomegranate juice makes lovely purple stains on your apron...wear one.
  3. Pomegranate syrup would be delicious on waffles
  4. Lemon curd should be eaten with a spoon. Always. 
  5. Your microwave has an automatic sensor that can suddenly decide that what you are doing on the stove is too hot and will turn on the fan all by itself. Who knew? I just thought the microwave was possessed.
Cupcakes
1 lemon cake mix
1/3 c. milk
1/2 c. oil
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 c. flour
2 1/2 c. lemon curd
  1. Mix cake mix, milk, oil, eggs, and vanilla in mixer until combined. Mix on med-high speed for 2 minutes
  2. Put 1/4 c. batter in cupcake liners
  3. Bake at 350 for 12 minutes
  4. Remove from oven and cool on wire racks
  5. Core cupcakes and set aside
  6. Fill with lemon curd and replace cupcake cores
  7. Squish down to distribute the lemon curd.
Frosting
1 cup butter
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup pomegranate juice
2 lbs Powdered sugar
Pomegranate seeds
  1. Make pomegranate syrup by boiling pomegranate juice until reduced by half. Let cool until at least room temperature. Longer if possible
  2. Cream butter, vanilla and salt. 
  3. Add powdered sugar and syrup. You can add additional pomegranate juice if the frosting is too thick.
  4. Add a couple of drop of red food coloring to make the frosting more pink
  5. Pipe onto cooled cupcakes. 
  6. Decorate with pomegranate seeds

Banana Caramel Cupcakes with Caramel Buttercream

Cupcake Palooza 2016 day 6

Banana Caramel Cupcakes with Caramel Buttercream
24 cupcakes

Cupcakes
1 white cake mix
1/3 c. milk
1/2 c. oil
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 c. flour
1 cup mashed banana
1 tsp cinnamon
  1. Mix cake mix, milk, bananas, oil, eggs, cinnamon, and vanilla in mixer until combined. Mix on med-high speed for 2 minutes
  2. Put 1/4 c. batter in cupcake liners
  3. Bake at 350 for 12 minutes
  4. Remove from oven and cool on wire racks
Frosting
1 cup room temp butter
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
2 1/2 T milk
3/4 c. caramel ice cream topping (I like Mrs. Richardson's)
2 lbs approximately powdered sugar
  1. Cream butter, vanilla and salt together. 
  2. Add most of the caramel topping and beat again
  3. Slowly alternate adding powdered sugar and milk until everything is mixed in. Beat on high speed 2 minutes until frosting is light and fluffy.
  4. Pipe onto cupcakes.
  5. Drizzle remaining caramel over frosted cupcakes. You can also add a caramel to the top if desired. 

Mint Chocolate Cupcakes with Mint Buttercream

Cupcake Palooza day 5

Right about now I'm asking myself how the heck I got roped into doing this. Surely there is an easier way to win friends and influence people....and this frosting kind of reminds me of those buttercream mints you get at wedding receptions. Just for the record...

Mint Chocolate Cupcakes with Mint Buttercream
24 cupcakes

Cupcakes
1 Devils Food Cake Mix
1/3 c. milk
1/2 c. oil
1 cup sour cream
4 eggs
2 tsp pure vanilla
1/4 c. flour
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 bag Andes mint chips
1 tsp mint extract
  1. Mix cake mix, milk, oil, sour cream, eggs, vanilla, and mint extract in mixer until combined. Mix on med-high speed for 2 minutes
  2. Fold in Andes mint chips
  3. Put 1/4 c. batter in cupcake liners
  4. Bake at 350 for 12 minutes
  5. Remove from oven and cool on wire racks
Frosting
1 cup room temp butter
2 tsp vanilla
1-2 tsp mint extract
1/2 tsp salt
6 T. milk
2 lbs approximately powdered sugar

  1. Cream butter, vanilla and salt together. 
  2. Alternate adding powdered sugar and milk until the frosting is the desired consistency. 
  3. Add mint extract until the frosting is as "minty" as you want. Mine was pretty minty.
  4. Add a couple of drops of green food coloring if you want green frosting. It's totally not necessary if you choose to cut it out.
  5. Pipe onto cupcakes.
  6. Decorate with leftover Andes mint chips, a full Andes mint or chocolate sprinkles

Cannoli Cupcakes

Cupcake Palooza 2016 Day 4

I go to Baltimore every year for work and while I'm there we always make a point to go to Vaccaro's Italian Pastry Shop. I try to get something different every time but we usually get a bunch of cannolis to go so that we can have a late night treat at the hotel. This was my attempt at recreating that dessert in a cupcake version. Not being anywhere close to an Italian grocery or specialty shop I had to improvise on the cannoli cream and I think it was pretty close. Close enough for northern Utah anyway. And yes, this is the same chocolate buttercream that has made an appearance already. I decided that if I could use the leftover frosting as I went it would make 10 dozen cupcakes a bit easier every night. And, an added bonus was that I didn't have vats of leftover frosting at the end of the 12 days.

Cannoli Cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream
24 cupcakes

Cupcakes
1 Butter Vanilla Cake Mix
1/3 c. milk
1/2 c. oil
1 cup sour cream
4 eggs
2 tsp pure vanilla
1/4 c. flour
1/4 tsp baking soda

  1. Mix cake mix, milk, oil, sour cream, eggs and vanilla in mixer until combined. Mix on med-high speed for 2 minutes
  2. Put 1/4 c. batter in cupcake liners
  3. Bake at 350 for 12 minutes
  4. Remove from heat and cool on wire racks
  5. Core cupcakes when cool and fill with cannoli cream
  6. Replace cores and squish down to distribute the cream into the cupcake
Cannoli Cream
1 cup ricotta cheese
1/3 c powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup mini chocolate chips

  1. The night before you are making the cupcakes strain the ricotta in a cheesecloth lined strainer overnight in the refrigerator.
  2. Squeeze any excess liquid from cheese
  3. Puree in food processor 3-4 minutes to kind of whip it and make it lighter and fluffier
  4. In mixer combine ricotta, powdered sugar and vanilla until mixed well
  5. Fold in chocolate chips

Chocolate Buttercream
1 cup room temp butter
2 tsp vanilla
1/3 baking cocoa
1/2 tsp salt
2 lbs (ish) powdered sugar
A few tablespoons milk
  1. Cream butter and vanilla together
  2. Add cocoa and salt until butter is smooth and chocolaty
  3. Alternate adding milk and powdered sugar until frosting is the consistency and sweetness you desire. 
  4. Pipe onto cooled cupcakes
  5. Sprinkle with chocolate sprinkles or additional mini chocolate chips

Rocky Road Cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream

Cupcake Palooza 2016 Day 3

Mr Jiggle's favorite ice cream is Rocky Road; he could eat it every day. This is a tribute to that beloved food group.

Rocky Road Cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream
24 cupcakes

Cupcakes
1 Dark Chocolate Fudge Cake Mix
1/3 c. milk
1/2 c. oil
1 cup sour )cream
4 eggs
2 tsp pure vanilla
1/4 c. flour

1/4 tsp baking soda
1 c. chopped almonds
1 jar marshmallow fluff
  1. Mix cake mix, milk, oil, sour cream, eggs, vanilla, flour and baking soda until combined. 
  2. Mix on med-high in mixer for 2 minutes
  3. Fold in chopped nuts
  4. Fill cupcake liners with 1/4 c. batter
  5. Bake for 12 minutes at 350 degrees
  6. Remove from oven and let cool on wire rack
  7. When cupcakes are cool core and set aside cores
  8. Fill cupcakes with a couple teaspoons of marshmallow fluff
  9. Replace cake cores in cupcakes. Squish them down if you need to.

Chocolate Buttercream
1 cup room temp butter
2 tsp vanilla
1/3 baking cocoa
1/2 tsp salt
2 lbs (ish) powdered sugar
A few tablespoons milk
  1. Cream butter and vanilla together
  2. Add cocoa and salt until butter is smooth and chocolaty
  3. Alternate adding milk and powdered sugar until frosting is the consistency and sweetness you desire. 
  4. Pipe onto cooled cupcakes
  5. Decorate with miniature marshmallows and additional chopped almonds

Key Lime Cupcakes with Lime Buttercream

Cupcake Palooza 2016 Day 2

Last year I tried to do lime cupcakes and it was a dismal failure. I threw away 12 dozen cupcakes that night. I've stewed about it all year long and this was what I came up with. It was a hit. The cake did stick to the liners more than other flavors because of the sugar content in the lime juice but overall, it was a success and was received well.

Key Lime Cupcakes with Lime Buttercream
24 cupcakes

Cupcakes
1 white cake mix
1/2 c. lime juice
1/2 c. oil
1 c. sour cream
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 c. flour
1 can key lime pie filling or lime curd
  1. Mix cake mix, milk, oil, sour cream, eggs and vanilla in mixer until combined. Mix on med-high speed for 2 minutes
  2. Put 1/4 c. batter in cupcake liners
  3. Bake at 350 for 12 minutes
  4. Remove from oven and cool on wire racks
  5. When cupcakes are cool, core and set cores aside
  6. Fill cupcakes with 2 tsp of filling and replace the cake core on top. You might have to kind of squish to get it back on. That's ok.
Frosting
1 cup room temp butter
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
6 T lime juice
2 lbs approximately powdered sugar

  1. Cream butter, vanilla and salt together. 
  2. Alternate adding powdered sugar and lime juice until the frosting is the desired consistency. 
  3. Add a couple of drops of green food coloring if you want green frosting. It's totally not necessary if you choose to cut it out.
  4. Pipe onto cupcakes.


Chocolate Truffle Cupcakes

 Cupcake Palooza 2016 Day 1

Chocolate Truffle Cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream
24 cupcakes

Cupcakes
1 Devils Food Cake Mix
1/3 c. milk
1/2 c. oil
1 cup sour cream
4 eggs
2 tsp pure vanilla
1/4 c. flour
1/4 tsp baking soda
24 chocolate truffles (I used Ferrero Rocher; you can do homemade if you're ambitious)
  1. Mix cake mix, milk, oil, sour cream, eggs and vanilla in mixer until combined. Mix on med-high speed for 2 minutes
  2. Put 1/4 c. batter in cupcake liners
  3. Bake at 350 for 12 minutes
  4. Remove from heat and quickly core cupcakes
  5. Place truffle in cupcake and put the pan back into oven for 1-2 minutes to slightly melt the chocolate into the cake
  6. Remove from oven and cool on wire racks
Chocolate Buttercream
1 cup room temp butter
2 tsp vanilla
1/3 baking cocoa
1/2 tsp salt
2 lbs (ish) powdered sugar
A few tablespoons milk
  1. Cream butter and vanilla together
  2. Add cocoa and salt until butter is smooth and chocolaty
  3. Alternate adding milk and powdered sugar until frosting is the consistency and sweetness you desire. 
  4. Pipe onto cooled cupcakes

Monday, December 26, 2016

Zupa's Chicken Enchilada Soup Taste a Like

Zupa's Chicken Enchilada Chili Soup Taste a Like

I have a really hard time going into Zupa's and plunking down $6 for a bowl of soup that I'm pretty sure I can recreate at home and feed a bunch of people for the same cost. So, this is my version of Zupa's Chicken Enchilada Soup. I combined a couple of different online recipes and after a couple of versions am now calling it my own.

Zupa's Chicken Enchilada Chili a'la Jiggle
serves 6-8

2 cups cooked chicken breast shredded or diced into small pieces
1 can red enchilada sauce
1 can green enchilada sauce
1 can cream of chicken soup
15 oz tomato sauce
4 oz can green chiles
1 12 oz bag frozen white corn
1 T. minced garlic
2 T. chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp back pepper
1/2 cup sour cream
Cheese for garnish

Add all ingredients except sour cream to crock pot. Let come to temp and cook on low a couple of hours. 15 minutes before serving add sour cream. Serve with cheddar cheese and tortilla strips.

*Chicken broth to thin to desired consistency.

1 15 oz can Cannelini beans, rinsed and drained