Thursday, May 20, 2010

When Life Hands You Fallen Cupcakes...

I am... not a very good cupcake baker.
I have... two cupcake cookbooks filled with photos of unattainable cupcake perfection.
I can... never seem to fill the cupcake pan neatly or evenly.
I have... had nothing but disastrous results when making cupcakes.
I will... be glad if some day perfectly baked cupcakes were ever to come out of my oven.
I do... so hate cleaning the cupcake pan afterward.
I am... supremely happy that there is, a mile or so from my house, a cupcake bakery. So if my planned dessert doesn't work out, the Hubs can always run over and pick up a few high-priced but gorgeous and tasty professionally made cupcakes.

I'm practicing making positive affirmation-type statements... how am I doing? Like the cupcakes I just made, these statements start out o.k. enough, but then something goes wrong. And don't even get me started on frosting! Ugh. Same story. As with most things, I probably just need more practice. Clearly there is some sort of mental-block to overcome.

I jumped into this recipe without fear, and except for my lack of cupcake confidence, they would've turned out great. As it stands, they are about 50/50, with half of them "fallen" and the other half o.k. The flavor is great and they (the good ones) have a nice tender crumb. Since it's a vegan recipe, there is no milk, eggs or butter in them and that makes them all the more astonishing. How great to know that even if you're out of those things, you can still whip up a fine chocolate cupcake!

So, what do you do when faced with a fallen chocolate cupcake (or say 10 of them)? You grab a scoop of vanilla ice cream and some hot fudge sauce, and call it a sundae!* Now that's a positively affirmative statement if ever I heard one.

Vegan Chocolate Ginger Orange Cupcakes from Apartment Therapy/The Kitchn

My Notes: I chopped up a piece of crystallized ginger instead of using fresh. Zested one large orange, did not measure. Replaced 1 cup of the water with strong hazelnut coffee (weird, but it's what we had). Over-filled most of the first pan. Recipe said to bake 15 minutes for a "medium sized cupcake". I was using regular old cupcake tins with regular-sized cupcake papers in them, but at 15 minutes the cupcakes were still very liquidy. At 17 minutes, I took the sad sunken things out. That was a mistake. The last pan I kept in until they passed the "touch test". After that I put the first pan back in for 10 more minutes. I knew they wouldn't be beauties, but at least they would be cooked through and therefore salvageable. Love the chocolate-orange combination. Fresh ginger would have had more of a presence but I like the subtlety of the little bits of candied ginger here and there instead. Made 20 cupcakes, but with all the over-filled ones, it probably should be 22.

*I might have to do something about the name though..."Vegan Chocolate Ginger Orange Cupcake Sundaes" is perhaps a bit too lengthy.
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  1. Haha! "Cupcake confidence." I love it. I think you should have a blog devoted to cupcakes with that name. Or maybe a rock band. Either way.

    Off topic, did I dream that you left me a comment on my second-to-last blog post about applying my "nonfear of death" to my nervousness about earthquakes? I just went back to read it again, so I could reply, and it's not there! Seriously, was that a dream? Because if it was, that is awesome.

  2. Leslie - You didn't dream it, it's there on your post from the 15th! It was a reply to your reply to my comment, and yes, it referenced your next post (if that makes sense? I think I just confused myself).

    I love the cupcake blog name/rock band idea... how about "Cupcake Confidential"? It does have a certain alliterative ring to it. Now I just need to learn a musical instrument and/or master cup-cakery!


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