Knowledge Explosion!

Except with cupcakes … the story here is that last night my sister had an idea that instead of just yammering on about my cupcakes and not providing recipes so that you, my dear readers could make them yourselves, I could post links or a little info about where I got the recipes and since most of them come from other cupcake and/or general baking blogs and websites, that would send people over to other sites and expand into kind of this network of cupcake blogs… or something. At the very least it would give people the chance to find the recipes I use and then maybe check out some other cool blogs. Oh the wonders of the internet…

In other news, there seems to be some sort of unidentified allergen in the air because my nose has been running nonstop all day and Andrea was having allergy issues too apparently, so it wasn’t just my imagination or something. I hate allergy medicine too because most of them are just pills that you pop once a day and it never seems to do anything, but I took something anyways, just because it was getting pretty disruptive having to get up to blow my nose every five seconds while I was trying to listen to music and get some stuff done. It didn’t help and I still kept having to get up but oh well, there are worse problems in the world than my allergies I suppose.

Moving on to happier things, yesterday’s cupcakes were a big hit; they were sweet potato pie inspired cupcakes so they had a graham cracker crust, sweet potato cake, and marshmallow frosting that kind of just melted all over the place and made a big mess but was still really delicious.

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So here’s the recipe I used for these gems but I altered it a little for the frosting because I didn’t have marshmallow fluff, so I just put some large marshmallows in a bowl with the butter and melted them in the microwave. I also didn’t measure the sugar, I just added that to taste because I don’t like my frosting to be too sweet, although that might have played a role in the runny-ness of the frosting. Oh, I also left out the egg in the batter because we didn’t have any in the house, so I just kept an eye on the batter and made sure it was the right consistency for cupcakes and it looked good so I went with it. http://www.howsweeteats.com/2011/11/sweet-potato-pie-cupcakes-with-marshmallow-frosting/

Today’s cupcakes were a second attempt at successfully pulling off a pudding cupcake because even though they came out tasting really good the first time, they caved in in the middle and I wanted to avoid that this time, so I had another go at it. I basically ended up doing a completely different cupcake though because I found a recipe for marbled cupcakes with pudding in the center and those sounded good so that’s what I went with.

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I also didn’t bother with frosting because it seemed really unnecessary and I didn’t want to mess with the flavor of the pudding because it was really good and I’ll get to why in a minute. First though, the link to the recipe I used for the actual cake: http://www.instructables.com/id/Chocolate-Pudding-Filled-Marbled-Party-Cupcakes/

For this I disregarded the part about the pudding, I only used the actual cake recipe and instead of piping the pudding into the center like they did there, I cut out a portion of the middle of each cupcake and filled it with pudding before replacing the tops because I really wanted the center to be completely full of pudding. Now on to the actual pudding; I actually used instant pudding (chocolate of course) from a box for this rather than making it from scratch. Now before you judge, let me just say that I make all of my cupcakes from scratch and won’t ever use a box mix but I love pudding and I honestly like even the boxed kind and it’s super easy so I just went with it. I also have figured out how to make it really delicious so that while it technically is box pudding, it’s actually pretty awesome. What I did was replace about half the milk with fairly strong coffee because coffee enhances chocolate flavor just perfectly. This made the pudding not quite as thick as your typical pudding so you might want to use less than half coffee and just make it stronger. After that was mixed up I then added in a couple of tablespoons of cocoa powder to cut some of the sweetness that can sometimes taste a bit artificial and again just to really enhance the chocolate flavor. To this particular pudding I also added a bit of arrowroot which is just a thickener because like I mentioned, is was a bit thin for my liking at first. It’s just a couple of really simple adjustments but honestly it takes your standard box pudding to a whole new level. You could also try other additions to make it better, one that just popped into my head was a bit of cinnamon, which is another classic pairing with chocolate. Really just have fun with it, as long as you keep a consistent liquid to solid ratio it’s kind of tough to mess up.

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