Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Icing on the (Cup)Cake

There was some sewing over the weekend, but no photographing. So, here's a little sweetness to start off the week.

My addiction to Groupons is well documented by now. So is my love of cupcakes. And butter cream frosting (see here and here). So, when I received a Groupon offer for a Cupcakes 101 class at Butter Lane Cupcakes in NY, I did not even blink before clicking "purchase".

In NY, the cupcake wars have been raging ever since the Sex and the City girls waited in line at Magnolia Bakery. But Butter Lane significantly advanced the arms race by offering "frosting shots" for $1. Skip the cupcake and just get the frosting. Brilliant.   

In Cupcakes 101, you take this same approach. Skip the cake, and jump right into making frosting, followed by a tutorial on how to perfectly ice your cupcakes. And they've got their cupcake and frosting recipes for chocolate and vanilla butter creams, and cream cheese frosting on Facebook. (Click here) So you can make them at home. Here is the chocolate butter cream recipe.

3/4lbs (3 sticks) of unsalted butter
2 oz cream cheese
2 cups confectioners sugar
6 oz melted bittersweet chocolate (cooled to room temp)
1 splash of vanilla extract
VANILLA CREAM CHEESE FROSTING1/4 lb (1 stick) unsalted butter 8 oz cream cheese 4 cups confectioners sugar 1 tsp vanilla extract
Bring butter and cream cheese to room temperature - they should be very soft. Combine butter and cream cheese in mixing bowl and mix on a medium speed for 5 min. For the chocolate frosting, add melted chocolate and mix for one more minute. While mixing at low speed add sugar. Once combined, add a splash of vanilla extract and mix on a medium to high speed for 3 min, or until smooth and fully combined. Frost and enjoy!
First off, I love any recipe that suggests a "splash" as a recipe amount. The other thing I really like about all of their butter cream frostings is the addition of cream cheese. It makes the frosting easier to spread and prevents it from getting a hard outer shell after a day.

I think the key point is to beat your frosting really well to incorporate air. This is where most home bakers go wrong when they "cream" butter and sugar. But extra beating = extra air = extra lightness in any finished cake or cookie or frosting.

As we learned in class, you can easily add a big blob of peanut butter to this frosting to make it a chocolate peanut butter frosting. You can do the same with the other flavors too - cream cheese + strawberry jam, for example, or vanilla + cinnamon or vice versa.

Anyway, what are you waiting for? Go make some frosting!  Cupcakes or cake is entirely optional!


T. Sedai said...

Oh man that looks yummy.

Michele | Sequined Aspahult Studio said...


Anonymous said...

You can definitely tell which ones are mine. lol.

Clio said...

@ Terp (anon) - Ha ha! I wasn't going to out you on your icing skills!