Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Have a Happy Hogmanay with boozy cupcakes!

I decided to share some of my favourite boozy cupcakes from March's Cupcake Hero challenge to celebrate New Year (Hogmanay to us Scots!).

The top picture is the strawberry margarita from The Picky Apple! They look totally tasty and if you click the link their is a recipe to make them - it looks quite complicated (lots of ingredients) but I'd say they look worth the effort!

The second picture is a White Russian cupcake by Zebe192 - I know this'd be Manny's favourite as it looks ultra chocolaty!!! Again there is a recipe after the link - again with lots of ingredients!

The final picture is an cupcake take on an old English favourite - the sherry trifle..yummy...made by the Cracking Good Egg. These actually look like the easiest to make of them all!

Anyways you can check out all the boozy cupcakes...all 45 of them...here.

Have a great New Year - don't drink too much or eat too many cupcakes!

Cupcake gifts...part two

As you can see I was lucky enough to get even more cupcake gifts...this time from Manny!

Picture one is an adorable cupcake purse and keyring set from Debenhams which I'd had my eye on, picture 2 is a cupcake diary, address book and notebook set which is totally cute, picture 3 is some super cute slippers from La Senza and 4 is a hot chocolate set from Next that I'd been lusting after since I first saw it! Now it turns out I'm not allowed to use it incase it gets broken so its an ornamental hot chocolate cupcake set!

I also got the book Fudge Cupcake Murder by Joanna Fluke which I don't have pic of but you can read about here.

All in all as you can see I was incredibly spoiled over Christmas, I must've been a good girl this year ;)

Christmas gifts..part one

First up my gifts from Dennis in Ann Arbour :)

The first picture is of 4 cupcake desert plates which I think are super cute, second picture are Hello Kitty (as a cupcake!) napkins and matching table cloth and the third pic is Cupcake Fun by Wilton and these ultra cute silicone cupcake cases shaped like teddy bears...adorable!

I also got some silicone muffin pans shaped like snowmen and gingerbread men :)

Cake...it's the real thing!

I hope everyone had a fantastic Christmas/Holidays and Santa was good to you all! I got some fab cupcake gifts (and some non-cupcake ones too!!), which of course I shall share in a post v.soon!

Although Christmas has now passed I couldn't resist posting these gorgeous cupcakes from Bakerella - how CUTE are they!?

Happy Holidays everyone!

Thursday, 18 December 2008

And now for something completely different...

Sick of all these frosted Christmas cupcakes...how about some meat!

With its endless variety of pies, cakes, and tarts, the bakery is a wonderland of delicious possibility, undermined only by the fact that none of its goods are made of meat. Baking up some protein, The Meatloaf Bakery.

Loaf's a four-seat takeout nook serving a motley armada of gussied up meatloaves, showcased in a pastry case, and formed in the shape of cupcakes, tarts, cakes, bread loaves, bite-sized “loafies”, and pies that'd make mincemeat outta mincemeat.

They look great - not sure about the taste however!

Thanks to today's Cakespy email for the heads up on this, and also to Thrillist for the picture! Maybe I should ask my friend in Chicago to pop along and try one!

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

More Christmas cupcakes...

Yesterday we had a career's assessment at work and after a day of hugging and drawing my feelings I decided to treat myself to a coffee and a mini cupcake at Primrose Bakery's new Covent Garden store. However when I walked in the door their Christmas cupcakes spoke to me and yelled "buy us!!!"

Who could resist them - look at that little baby deer cupcake!! I was really worried she was fashioned from sugar and I'd have to eat her but thankfully she was plastic and is now sitting on top of my Alessi canisters in my kitchen!

So back to the cakes .....they were F.A.B! Moist, yummy with lashings of scrummy frosting!!! Seriously one of the best cupcakes in London! And beautifully decorated - it looks just like the little creatures are sitting on snow topped cupcakes!

Also I was really impressed that they are charging no extra for the Christmas cupcakes than their normal, which at under £2 each are some of the cheapest in London! And they don't scrimp on ingredients or frosting that much is for sure!

All these cupcakes are making me festively plump..well more so!! Only Buttercup and Hummingbird Christmas ones to check out now and then I'm on a cupcake free diet for a month or two!

BTW the other two non-festive cupcakes are a rose one (gorgeous - the petals on top were really tasty and the rose flavour came through in the frosting...although when I gave Manny some his flavour guess was 'trifle'...random!!!) and a chocolate coffee frosted one for Manny which he happily devoured so I assume he liked it!*

*I blame the elf for possessing me and making me buy lots of cupcakes ...he is a bad cupcake elf!

Its Christmaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaas!

And the festive cupcakes just keep coming!

Last weekend I ventured out on possibly the coldest and wetest day of the year and went to Partridges Market as I knew it would be my only opportunity in December to pick up some Crumbs and Doilies flavour of the month - which are Christmas flavoured.

Our Christmas Cupcakes were one of our most popular flavours of the month last year, so it seemed only right to bring them back for Christmas. A light but festive sponge made with organic cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, muscovado sugar and golden syrup and topped with real brandy buttercream icing. It’s Christmas, in a cupcake!

And that is EXACTLY what they tasted of...Christmas! They were light and moist with a lovely spiciness to them and the frosting was just fantastic!!

And as usual they had the best sprinkles! I'm loving the trees!

Tuesday, 16 December 2008

Happy National Cupcake day!!

National Cupcake Day was yesterday and I missed wishing you all a happy one as I was out on a Christmas date with my hubby looking at the Christmas lights and windows in the West End and then stuffing him with meaty goodness at Bodeans as a thank you for schleping round the west end with me getting overly excited about giant snowmen on Carnaby Street!

We did however take time to pop into Selfridges and pick up a Lola's 12 days of Christmas cupcake for me (I got the last one - yesterday was 3 French Hens) and Manny had a double chocolate - surprise!

Check out the size difference on those cup cakes - Manny's chocolate one is nearly as big as the huge snowmen!!

Sunday, 14 December 2008

Models and cupcakes

Not a combination you usually see, but in Time Out's New York 100 Best food and drink 2008 round up they fed some models amongst other things a red velvet cupcake from Sweet Revenge.

“It’s very creamy, in a good way. I need water! If these desserts were in my house, I’d just keep eating them. I eat junk like crazy. I don’t know where the food goes! I only go to the gym to make fun of my friends. [Laughs]”—Celestina
“I was scared of this one at first—I thought it would be too sweet. But the cake is so moist and not too sweet at all.”—Stephanie
“The cake is perfect and the icing tastes good, though it got a little melty.”—Aneta

I cannot wait to go to Sweet Revenge, if its good enough for models, its good enough for me and I cannot wait to try their Pure cupcake, while I know Manny will be having their signature Dirty cupcake! I have to say the above pic (courtesy of Time Out NY) doesn't do their cakes justice from what I've seen!

See what else they fed the models here.

Also on their Top 100,the Green-tea cupcake at Amai Tea & Bake House.

In a city that is both health-obsessed and willing to wait hours for cupcakes, this Japanese twist on tradition should be at the top of everyone’s list: The light, moist cake and silken buttercream are balanced by the intense flavor of ceremonial-grade matcha green tea. Maybe—just maybe—the bonus ingredient’s health benefits are enough to counteract everything else.

I shall be adding Amai to the cupcake tour of NY list for sure! I think Manny will love it there- they do some rather fab looking brownies!

The Girl Gourmet Cupcake Maker...does it really work?

Don't torture your kids with this is the advice of Eyewitness News reporter Tommy Noel at KIDK news in Idaho Falls, USA.

I think I have to agree after seeing the cupcakes that were made with this thing - it may be fun but god only knows whats in those microwave cupcake mixes and I think the frosting reminded me a bit too much of my litter tray duties. Also for the cost you get a mix for 4 cupcakes and I really don't think microwave cupcakes will ever taste good! You can watch how the kids testing the Cupcake Maker got on here.

I'm with Tommy here - much better to buy the kids a nice baking set from M&S or something and teach them to bake!*

*on the video they recommend an Easy Bake Oven but we don't have those here!

Saturday, 13 December 2008

I was made for loving you....

woo hoo ooo ooo...

Sorry that was me trying to interpret my FAVE Kiss song - 'I was Made for Loving You' which Manny despises (he calls it disco) and mocks me mercilessly for loving. (Check out the vid here - its FAB I tell you!)

Anyways...back to cupcakes. Yesterday's guest blogger on Cupcakes Take The Cake was Natalie from Bake and Destroy who posted a pic of this most metal cupcake by Nadbakes!!!! Seriously I have never seen a more metal cupcake - only a Manowar cupcake could out-metal this!

Friday, 12 December 2008

Seriously cute cupcakes

Today's pic of the day on Serious Eats was this fantastic Jack n Jill cupcake by Christine Hamilton, Abbietabbie on Facebook and I just had to share it! It looks too cute to eat doesn't it!

Manny would love the four and twenty blackbirds pie cupcake (cupcakes and pie being two of his favourite things!). These are all part of her nursery rhyme cupcake collection which can be viewed here!

Thursday, 11 December 2008

Cupcakes are the new black!

From yesterdays Daily Mail.

A year ago she was unheard of, and after the U.S. election result, may return to obscurity.

In between however, Sarah Palin has achieved the ultimate recognition of the Internet age. Along with cupcakes.

While animal killing madwoman Sarah is the fastest rising query globally on Googles annual zeitgeist list, cupcakes are the fastest rising recipe search in the UK!

Go cupcakes!

Candy Cane Cupcakes

Further to my "where did the mint come from" post below about Outsider Tart's mint frosting on their holiday Red Velvet cupcake, I've just been reading Serious Eats New York (another of my obsessions!) and found this post about Blondie and Brownie (another fave blog of mine!) and their visit to the Treats Truck for some candy cane cupcakes!

How adorable do these look!!?

I can't wait to try something from the Treat Truck when I go to NY! I love how NY has all these trucks selling fabulous food on the streets - and ones dedicated to treats and deserts! We get those vile stinky hot dog sellers which I wouldn't eat from if I was starving! euuuugh..shudder! Although we do have Chocstar which I heart and shall be buying from again soon at Slow Food Market if they're there :)

The pics are from Blondie and Brownie and you can see more on their Flickr.

I wish every day was cupcake day!

It took us AGES to find the farmers market in Chiswick where Outsider Tart were selling their fantastic wares however the trek was worth it (We ended up walking about 7 miles on Sunday - mainly because I got us lost with a very bad map!) when we found the Tarts and their GORGEOUS cupcakes. The best thing about the cupcakes was they don't just look great, they taste it too!

We bought two holiday red velvet with mint frosting, a ginger lemon (with home made lemon curd - which was to DIE for - seriously I could've eaten it with a spoon if I'd a jar!), a triple chocolate and a mincemeat (which we shared!)

There's not a lot I can say really - how many times can I say how fantastic they tasted??? The mincemeat (homemade by the David's) was really flavoursome - it had a nice spicy taste to it and it was a really great addition to the cupcake! I had the ginger lemon which is possibly my favourite cupcake by the Davids (well till next time I go to cupcake day!). Manny had the triple chocolate (of course) and just when he thought it couldn't get any better he discovered the home made raspberry truffle in the middle and nearly went into cupcake meltdown! I tried a bit of the truffle and it was melt-in-your-mouth fantastic!

I was a bit unsure that Manny would like the holiday red velvet as he's not fond of mint but he loved it - as did I! I'm not sure what was in the frosting as there were crunchy minty bits - I'm thinking maybe candy canes as they're quite festive? What ever they were they tasted GOOD and the hit of mint was deffo a great addition to an old favourite!

Manny also had one of their orange brownies which he took to lunch on Monday and thought it was one of the best brownies ever!

Looking forward to January's cupcake day already :)

Oh and if you do want to venture to Chiswick Farmers Market its only about 20mins walk from the underground - we just managed to walk around most of Chiswick thanks to a very bad map from Walkit.com!

Lets have a cupcake party!

This cute set from Marks and Spencer is perfect if your child wants to have some friends over for a bake party!

It includes:
4 aprons
4 spatulas
Cup cake shaped timer
Recipe cards
Baking party invites
Cookie boxes
Cookie mix and chocolate chunks

If its in the January sales I may purchase it solely for the kitchen timer as its ultra cute and my one from Debenhams is beginning to die on me!

Sunday, 7 December 2008


Today on our hunt for Outsider Tart at Dukes Meadows Farmers Market we ventured to deepest West London...well Chiswick! After a long and chilly tube journey we spotted Maison Blanc with a window of goodies to tempt anyone - it particularly tempted me as (a) there were cupcakes and (b) there was a cafe/restaurant area and I needed a wee...well any excuse for cake ;)

I had a cappuccino and a pistachio cupcake, Manny a mocha and a concerto.

My cupcake was DIVINE! Raymond was spoiling us with his fantastic cake - one of the best cupcakes I've ever had I have to say and I wasn't expecting much as I wasn't sure how a French cupcake would taste! As it was so gorgeous, I was very tempted to try one of the other cupcakes (they had strawberry and chocolate and some mini ones I couldn't see the flavour of!) but we were going to the market and I didn't want to be too greedy!
Manny's concerto (sorry no pic - you can just make it out behind my cake) was basically a LOT of chocolate...
Layers of chocolate biscuit soaked in chocolate syrup, chocolate mousse and feuillantine. Finished with chocolate decoration

..and he LOVED it! Bless him he got up at 9am (Something he cannot remember in living memory doing on a Sunday) so he was in need of sustenance!

We shall definitely be heading back to Maison Blanc if we venture to Chiswick again! Oh and their coffee was fantastic too, and I got some adorable mince pies as a gift and some Madeline's for a friend that's been after them for some time!

Saturday, 6 December 2008

I heart Knut

Not really a cupcake post but today is Knut's 2nd birthday and he's eating a vegetable "cake" and I love him so I've decided to post about him! One of the happiest days ever was seeing Knut for the first time at Berlin Zoo (thanks Manny for traipsing there with me 3 times to see him!). Knut wrote in his blog that today he shall play ball and eat lots...his two favourite things...we are very similar in the eating department!!

And just to keep it on a cupcake theme I've included a pic of some rather fetching polar bear cupcakes I found on Crazy Cupcakes Flickr stream!

Outsider Tarts festive Cupcake day

Tomorrow at Chiswick Market two of my favourite cupcake bakers, Outsider Tart have the following cupcakes (and brownies!!)

Filled cupcakes:
Mincemeat (we make our own mincemeat filling which is also available jarred up for the holidays)
Ginger Lemon - Ginger cake with lemon curd filling and lemon buttercream
Triple Choc - chocolate cake with our own raspberry truffle in the center and chocolate frosting (Note: our homemade truffles are also available for the holidays for the remainder of our holiday markets)

Unfilled cupcakes:
Holiday Red Velvet
Chocolate mint cupcakes
Cranberry with orange glaze (you guessed it our cranberry compote is available jarred for the holidays in two sizes)

Brownies - Fudge no nut brownies, White Chocolate with pistachio and cranberries and Blondies!

There is also a secret brownie available but you need to read their blog to find out what it is! I'm planning a trip to Chiswick early tomorrow morning to stock up as its been too long since I had an Outsider Tart cake!!!!

Birthday cupcake book

I know the pics on the front are really fairy cakes not cupcakes but I spotted it in Paperchase and thought I'd post it on here. I don't really need to remember enough birthdays to warrant a whole book for them but it is very cute!

You can buy it in store or if you're in the UK you can order it from Paperchase's Amazon site.

Cosy cupcakes!!

I think I shall have to get a tea cosy to go with my super cute tea pot - Truly Scrumptious Knitted Food have both ready made cupcake cosys and knit your own cosy kits! I think I may have to go for some knitting lessons at the Make Lounge and have a try at making my own!

Some recent cupcake purchases

Whilst hitting the shops to do some Christmas shopping I have managed to treat myself to a few cupcake items along the way!!

The gorgeous cupcake calender was bought at Paperchase, the air freshener (I got strawberry but you can order other scents direct from their website) by Naughty But Nice from Cards Galore and the teapot from Debenhams (if you hurry its still got 20% off!)

My house is becoming over-run with cupcakes - thankfully Manny is very understanding and encourages my cupcake love :)