Crafty Me. And Cupcakes.

Triple Chocolate, Browned Butter Yellow Cake, and Champagne Cherry Chip

I had a very crafty childhood.  Perhaps it was because those were the dark days before internet, Wii games, and DVRs with on-demand kiddie shows.  The days when a stay at home mom had to do more than push a button to keep two active kids entertained.  Don’t read that as judgement, please – I’m about to become a button pushing mom myself.  But something about being pregnant has made me increasingly nostalgic about my own childhood, and my memories of the fun and crazy things my brother and I did, all in the name of daytime entertainment.  A lot of what I remember was food related.  Or at least kitchen related.  I specifically recall getting to do “experiments” – which involved a dish tub and a large number of random ingredients, some edible (flour, spices, etc) and some not so much (dirt, bugs), all mixed up with water into something that can only be described as nasty.  I’m sure it was a great way to keep a little one distracted and out of the way – but wow!  I can’t believe my mom supported that kind of craziness.  And cleaned up after it. Continue reading

Chocolate Cookie Cupcakes

Well that was just mean of me, wasn’t it?  Posting a picture like that and then leaving y’all hanging for a week?  Especially when the “recipe” is so ridiculous that I have to use quotation marks around the word.  Forgive me, I did get a bit distracted by birthday, houseguests, parties and general chaos in the chocolate kitchen!

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Pineapple Upside Down Carrot Cupcakes

We had a beautiful weekend here in Portland, sunny and in the 70’s, the perfect antidote to a difficult week of re-entry from vacation.  I planted tomatoes and peppers (both sweet and hot!) and parsley and a passionflower vine in the garden, drank a beer on a neighbor’s back deck and coo-ed at their new little twin babies, and went to a barbecue at a friends house.  Blissful.  And then woke up this morning to 48 degrees, gray skies, and drizzle.  Ahh, well.  Reality bites.

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Brunch for Mom

Holy carpe diem, did you know Mother’s Day is this Sunday?!  Was it not just New Year’s Day, like, yesterday?  Sigh.  I wish time wouldn’t keep speeding up on me.  At any rate, in case you are as behind-the-times as I am, I thought I would post some quick links to my favorite easy-peasy yummy things that you can whip up in no time this weekend.  Mom deserves to be spoiled, after all.

In order with above pictures, starting at the top, from left to right:

Bacon Kale Mushroom Quiche

Butter Crumb Cakes

Dead Simple Chocolate Tart

Leek and Mushroom Tart

Ham and Gruyere Bread Pudding

Passionfruit Pound Cake

Chocolate Chai Cupcakes with Whipped Cream Cheese Frosting

Fresh Fruit Galette

Brown Sugar Yogurt Cake with Blueberries

Happy Mother’s Day Weekend to you all, I’ll be back next week with some new baked deliciousness to share!

One year ago on C& T:  Rum Raisin (Currant) Cookies, or The Booziest Cookies I Ever Did Make

Chocolate Chai Cupcakes with Whipped Cream Cheese Frosting

Cupcakes are festive, don’t you think?  Besides being portable, and in handy single serving sizes – they just have “party” written all over them.  Especially when topped with colored sprinkles and all decked out with cute wrappers and animal shaped toppers (see below).  The best thing about cupcakes – at least from the standpoint of me, the laziest baker around – is that it takes very little effort to dress them up.  Pipe on the frosting instead of spreading it on and you go from home-baked to practically professional in the wink of an eye!  And, shhhhhh, don’t tell – piping is way faster!  Sometimes I think I should do a Lazy Baker class for moms and show them how easy it is to look like a pro and not waste a lick of energy.  But then I get too lazy to set up the class, and there goes another idea down the drain . . .

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Chocolate Cupcake Toppers!

cupcake-topper-trio

Was the suspense killing you?  This post was supposed to happen days ago, but life intervened.  Darn you, life.

But here they are, my adorable little chocolate dudes, now right at home on top of some super yummy cupcakes.  All I need is to figure out a way to work a cookie into this and true bliss will be mine.  Or maybe I just need to up the ratio of cupcake toppers to cupcake.  One topper seems so . . . lonely.

Need more cuteness?  Here’s a whole tray of it:

topper-tray

Cupcakes from Bliss Bake Shop, good thing I live really far from there.

No time to make your own toppers?  You can find them at my biz website, Portland Truffle.

toppers-boxed