Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day everyone! I HAD to do a Green Velvet recipe because…well its GREEN! And you know you can never have too much green today!

Green Velvet Cupcakes

This recipe also works for cakes, mini cupcakes, whoopie pies! Do what you want to do!

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose gluten free flour (Better Batter so that you don’t have to add any xanthan gum)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder (Hershey’s is great)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup canola or vegetable oil
  • 1 cup buttermilk or a buttermilk substitute:
    • 1 1/2 cups coconut or rice milk
    • 1/2 or 2/3 cup sugar
    • 3 tablespoons vegan butter
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 oz green food coloring (yes a whole bottle! You’re going for a deep forest green color)
  1. Preheat your oven to 350ºF.
  2. Line your muffin/cupcake tins with festive paper liners and set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, lightly stir eggs with a whisk.  Then add in remaining liquid ingredients. Whisk until blended and set aside.
  4. Place all dry ingredients in your mixing bowl and stir together well.
  5. Pour all of the green food coloring into the wet ingredients. (If you have little ones, have them do this part – it’s a lot of fun to make colored batter – it’s still fun for me and I’m 22. It will always be fun.)
  6. Pour your wet ingredients into your dry ingredients and mix for about a minute or two until well combined and that nice deep forest green color.
  7. Pour you batter into your cupcake tins about 2/3 full. They will puff up nicely.
  8. Bake for 12-16 minutes or until you can insert a toothpick into the center of a cupcake and it comes out clean.
  9. Let cook for 10-15 minutes, then remove from pans and transfer to a wire rack for them to cool completely. Cupcakes do not frost well when they are hot!

Frost with your favorite frosting – can or from scratch! Here is a scratch recipe that is great!

Vanilla Whipped “Cream”/Frosting Recipe 

mix:

  • 1/2 cup vegan shortening (Spectrum Organic palm oil shortening or Earth Balance Shortening)
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • Up to 1/8 cup water

Slowly add in water until consistency is thick, smooth, and spreadable

Frost your green creations and garnish with green sprinkles or green sprinkles and yellow sprinkles (to represent that pot of gold!) OR green, yellow and white sprinkles. Have fun with it!!
ENJOY!
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Kwegyirba Croffie is a freelance Associate Producer at News 12 Connecticut and a Special Events/Event Planning and Social Media Intern at College Lifestyles (TM). She is a Quinnipiac University alumni and a sister of Alpha Delta Pi. She enjoy cupcakes,Broadway musicals, Forever 21 ,giraffes, peacock feathers, orchids, lillies and anything Disney.

Nick’s Chocolate Cupcakes

So my boyfriend is a baker. Well that’s not entirely true. He’s a news director who is very good at making cookies and cupcakes, cakes etc.. (Saying he’s a baker sounds like that’s ALL he does which isn’t true…I digress) He made yummy chocolate cupcakes that he brought to work and people gobbled up and the best part is they are gluten free! See people, gluten free can be delicious! He also made a vegan frosting for the cupcakes which was pretty good too. Our co-workers were surprised that a gluten free cupcake can taste so good! I’m sharing his recipe with you so you to can amaze your non gluten free family and friends.

Nick’s Chocolate Cupcakes

Ingredients 

  • 1 ½ cup gluten free flour
  • ½ teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • ¼  cup cocoa powder (Hershey’s is gluten free)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. FOR CAKE: Lightly grease a 9 x 5 pan (pam it good and well particularly if you want to get it out of the pan when it’s cooled). FOR CUPCAKES: Place cupcake liners into a cupcake pan.
  2. Sift together gluten free flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, salt and xanthan gum. Mix well. The batter should be an even light brown color all throughout.
  3. Then add in oil, water, and vanilla. Again, mix it all together until all the ingredients are incorporated the best you can.
  4. The add in the vinegar LAST. Add the vinegar LAST and after all else is well mixed to avoid it reacting to much with the baking soda (“Volcano” reaction= bad and you cake may not fluff). Mix until as smooth and pudding-like the mixture is. If you have a hand beater or a blender use that, a wisk might work well too in the absence of either of the other two.
  5. Pour into prepared pan, and bake for 45 minutes (FOR CUPCAKES: Pour approximately 1/3 c batter into each cupcake tin, bake for 20-30min). Check it after that with a knife in the center. If it comes out with batter still on it then bake it for longer (at least another 10 minutes for cake 5-10 minutes for cupcakes, but you judge based on how much liquid is left).

For the Vegan Frosting:

You may want to wait until the next morning to make and apply this to the cake (or cupcakes)

  • ¼ cup margarine or vegan butter – Earth Balance (softened)
  • ½ tespoon pure vanilla extract (if you are using almond milk use pure almond extract)
  • 1 ½ cup powdered sugar (confectioners sugar)
  • 1 tablespoon almond or coconut milk (or enough so it’s spreadable)
  1. Get margarine (or vegan butter) softened enough to be easily mushed. Cut it into a small mixing bowl in about tablespoon sizes. This will make it easier to mix in.
  2. Add in powdered sugar (not packed but just above the top of the cup), and cream together with margarine. It will take a while. If it still looks powdery at all, keep going because you’re not done yet. I recommend using a wooden spoon possibly one with a flat end that is cut in a slant so it will run more easily over the bottom of the bowl.
  3. Add in vanilla. And mix in.  Then add the coconut or almond milk. Mix it in, whip is probably better way to describe it. Then slowly add in 1 tsp at a time, whipping between each, until it is smooth enough to be spreadable. Leave out on counter, and mix occasionally until cake comes out and is cooled COMPLETELY!
  4. Frost cooled cakes or cupcakes.

ENJOY!

Kwegyirba Croffie is a Freelance Associate Producer at News 12 Connecticut and a Special Events/Event Planning and Social Media Intern at College Lifestyles (TM). She is a Quinnipiac University alumni and a sister of Alpha Delta Pi. She enjoy cupcakes,Broadway musicals, Forever 21 ,giraffes, peacock feathers, orchids, lillies and anything Disney.

Valentine’s Day Eve

Happy February 13th! Valentine’s Day is tomorrow! HOPEFULLY, you or your loved one aren’t scrambling out and about trying to scrounge up something last minute for tomorrow.

Like I am sure you know, chocolate and Valentine’s Day are two peas in a pod. Who doesn’t love chocolate and some flowers on Valentine’s Day? I know I love it! Brownies and chocolate cake are my favorite chocolatey treat (with chocolate chip cookies right up there). How does a Devil’s Food White-Out Cake sound to enjoy with your hunni tomorrow? (Or tonight if you’re celebrating early!)

Devil’s Food White-Out Cake

Ingredients 

For The Cake:

  • 1 1/3 cups all-purpose gluten free flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 sticks (10 tablespoons) unsalted vegan butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (packed) light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 4 ounces semisweet or milk chocolate, finely chopped, or 2/3 cup store-bought mini chocolate chips

For The Filling and Frosting:

  • 1/2 cup egg whites (about 4 large)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  1. Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350º F. Butter two 8-x-2-inch round cake pans (9-inch is a good size), dust the insides with some gluten free flour, tap out the excess and line the bottoms with parchment or wax paper. Put the pans on a baking sheet.
  2. Sift together the gluten free flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
  3. Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the vegan butter on medium speed until soft and creamy. Add the sugars and continue to beat for another 3 minutes. Add the eggs one by one, beating for 1 minute after each addition.
  4. Beat in the vanilla; don’t be concerned if the mixture looks curdled. Reduce the mixer speed to low and mix in the melted chocolate. When it is fully incorporated, add the dry ingredients alternately with the coconut milk, adding the dry ingredients in 3 additions and the milk in 2 (begin and end with the dry ingredients); scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed and mix only until the ingredients disappear into the batter. At this point, the batter will be thick, like frosting. Still working on low speed, mix in the boiling water, which will thin the batter considerably. Switch to a rubber spatula, scrape down the bowl and stir in the chopped chocolate. Divide the batter evenly between the two pans and smooth the tops with the rubber spatula.
  5. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, rotating the pans at the midway point. When fully baked, the cakes will be springy to the touch and a thin knife inserted into the centers will come out clean. Don’t worry if the tops have a few small cracks. Transfer the cake pans to a rack and cool for about 5 minutes, then run a knife around the sides of the cakes, unmold them and peel off the paper liners. Invert and cool to room temperature right side up. (The cooled cake layers can be wrapped airtight and stored at room temperature overnight or frozen for up to 2 months.)
  6. When you are ready to fill and frost the cake, inspect the layers. If the cakes have crowned, use a long serrated knife and a gentle sawing motion to even them.
  7. If you want more than two layers of cake, with the same knife, slice each layer horizontally in half. Then set 3 layers aside and crumble the fourth layer; set the crumbs aside. But if you only want a simple two layer cake, you don’t have to do this.
  8. To make the filling and the frosting start by putting the egg whites in a clean, dry mixer bowl or in another large bowl. Have a candy thermometer at hand.
  9. Put the sugar, cream of tartar and water in a small saucepan and stir to combine. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, cover the pan and boil for 3 minutes. Uncover and allow the syrup to boil until it reaches 242 degrees F on the candy thermometer. While the syrup is cooking, start beating the egg whites.
  10. When the syrup is at about 235ºF, begin beating the egg whites on medium speed with the whisk attachment or with a hand mixer. If the whites form firm, shiny peaks before the syrup reaches temperature, reduce the mixer speed to low and keep mixing the whites until the syrup catches up. With the mixer at medium speed, and standing back slightly, carefully pour in the hot syrup, pouring it between the beater(s) and the side of the bowl. Splatters are inevitable — don’t try to scrape them into the whites, just carry on. Add the vanilla extract and keep beating the whites at medium speed until they reach room temperature, about 5 minutes. You should have a smooth, shiny, marshmallowy frosting. Although you could keep it in the fridge, it’s better to use the frosting right after it is made.

Cake Assembly Time!

  1. Put a bottom layer cut side up on a cardboard cake round or on a cake plate protected by strips of wax or parchment paper.
  2. Using a long metal icing spatula, cover the layer generously with frosting. Top with a second layer, cut side up, and frost it. Finish with the third layer, cut side down, and frost the sides and top of the cake. Don’t worry about smoothing the frosting — it should be swirly.
  3. Now, cover the entire cake with the chocolate cake crumbs, gently pressing the crumbs into the filling with your fingers.
  4. Refrigerate the cake for about 1 hour before serving.

WOOO! I know that was A LOT of stuff but YOUR CAKE WILL BE DELICIOUS! MMMM cake!

No matter what dessert you are serving for Valentine’s Day, create it with love because it will taste even sweeter 🙂

ENJOY!

Kwegyirba Croffie is a freelance Associate Producer at News 12 Connecticut and a Special Events/Event Planning and Social Media Intern at College Lifestyles (TM). She is a Quinnipiac University alumni and a sister of Alpha Delta Pi. She enjoy cupcakes,Broadway musicals, Forever 21 ,giraffes, peacock feathers, orchids, lillies and anything Disney.

Strawberry Champagne Cupcakes

Yesterday my boyfriend and I celebrated Valentine’s Day early with a trip to Godiva. The only thing I can have without problem at Godiva are the chocolate covered strawberries (WHICH ARE DELICIOUS!). So the plan was to get some of those. Then we stumbled upon the little candy boxes that they have filled with little truffles or speciality chocolates for Valentine’s Day. One of the delectable treats there were Strawberry Champagne Hearts. A Strawberry Champagne Heart is strawberry ganache blended with a hint of champagne in a white chocolate shell. Can you say MMMMM! We decided to get those they are very very yummy. These little treats got me thinking about creating a cupcake to replicate the yummy flavor found in the little heart! I give you , Strawberry Champagne Cupcakes!

Strawberry Champagne Cupcakes

Ingredients

For the Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/4 cup gluten free flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/3 cup coconut milk
  • 1/3 cup champagne/sparkling white wine (May I suggest a sweet rose champagne)
  • 1/3 cup strawberry puree
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the Frosting:

  • 1 cup champagne May I suggest a sweet rose champagne)
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted vegan butter, room temperature, cut into tablespoons
  • 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons coconut milk as needed
  • Strawberries for garnish
  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line a muffin pan with pink cupcake/muffin liners
  2. In a large bowl, sift together gluten free flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together coconut milk, champagne, strawberry puree, sugar, vanilla, and oil. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ingredients. Mix until relatively smooth.
  4. Fill cupcake liners with a scant 1/4 cup of batter (cups should be just under 2/3 of the way full).
  5. Bake for 18-22 minutes or until set, and toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer to cooling rack and allow to cool completely.
  6. Bring champagne to a simmer in a small saucepan. Continue to boil gently until only 2-3 tablespoons of liquid remain. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
  7. For frosting, cream vegan butter in electric mixer for 1-2 minutes until fluffy. Slowly add 1 cup sugar and beat until smooth. Add 2 tablespoons reduced champagne and mix. Continue to add confectioners’ sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, and beat until light and fluffy. Add coconut milk or more sugar as necessary to achieve proper consistency. Pipe or spread onto cooled cupcakes.
  8. Slice strawberries in half and garnish on top of cupcakes

Chocolate Marshmallow Waffles

Waffles are delicious. Chocolate is also delicious. Marshmallows = delicious. So clearly chocolate marshmallow waffles can only be one thing…EXTRAORDINARY!

Breakfast as we all know is the most important meal of the day. It’s about to get sweeter with these wonderful waffles.

Chocolate Marshmallow Waffles

Whisk together in a large bowl:
  • 1 cup all-purpose gluten free flour
  • ⅓ cup unsweetend cocoa (Hershey’s is dairy free so is Toll House)
  • ⅓ cup sugar
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
Whisk together in another bowl:
  • 1¼ cups almond, coconut or soy milk
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 4 tablespoons dairy free butter (Earth Balance is great and my favorite)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and gently whisk them together, mixing until combined.  Stir in:
  • ½ cup of your favorite dairy free chocolate chips (Trader Joe’s makes great ones)
  • ½ cup miniature marshmallows

Beat until the peaks are stiff but not dry then fold into the batter:

  • 2 large egg whites
  1. Stir the batter to make sure the chips and marshmallows are evenly distributed, then spoon a scoop of the batter into your waffle iron, until the skillets are completely filled.
  2. Spread the batter evenly.
  3. Let the batter bake on the iron for 30 seconds, then close the lid and bake until the waffle is set and cooked through.
  4. Dust with powdered sugar and serve immediately.
These waffles will put your regular waffles to shame (not that the regular waffles aren’t good, they just aren’t chocolatey and filled with chocolate chips and marshmallow goodness 😉 ) Great for breakfast or a special breakfast for dessert! (Top with some dairy free ice cream and dairy free whipped creme and you are good to go!)
ENJOY!!

Kwegyirba Croffie is a freelance Associate Producer at News 12 Connecticut and a Special Events/Event Planning and Social Media Intern at College Lifestyles (TM). She is a Quinnipiac University alumni and a sister of Alpha Delta Pi. She enjoy cupcakes,Broadway musicals, Forever 21 ,giraffes, peacock feathers, orchids, lillies and anything Disney.

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Bars with Peanut Butter Frosting

Another wonderful recipe chock full of sticky, creamy, peanut butter goodness for this National Peanut Butter Day!

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Bars with Peanut Butter Frosting

These oatmeal cookie bars are chewy and delicious. And for a peanut butter lover, they deliver. Peanut butter throughout. The frosting is especially addicting.

Ingredients

For the Oatmeal Peanut Butter Bars: 

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup natural creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup vegan butter, softened (Earth Balance)
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup all-purpose gluten free flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup gluten free oatmeal

For the Peanut Butter Frosting:

  • 1/4 cup vegan butter, softened (Earth Balance)
  • 1/4 cup natural creamy peanut butter
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2-3  tablespoons coconut milk
  • 1 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. Line a 9×13 pan with wax paper.
  3. Cream vegan butter, peanut butter and sugars in a large bowl.
  4. Beat in egg. Add gluten free flour, baking soda, and oatmeal and mix until well combined.
  5. Press into an ungreased 9×13 pan. Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown.
  6. Remove from the oven and let cool completely before frosting.
  7. To make the frosting, combine the vegan butter, peanut butter, and vanilla in a medium sized bowl.
  8. Whip until light and fluffy. Start by adding 2 tablespoons coconut milk and the powdered sugar.
  9. Whip until incorporated. Adjust by adding more milk or more sugar until you reach the desired consistency.
  10. Spread ALL over your completely cooled blondies.

ENJOY!

It has been a WONDERFULLY sticky peanut butter day. Is your tongue stuck to the roof of your mouth yet? I hope not. Because if it is, how are you supposed to enjoy more peanut butter goodness?!? 🙂

Kwegyirba Croffie is a freelance Associate Producer at News 12 Connecticut and a Special Events/Event Planning and Social Media Intern at College Lifestyles (TM). She is a Quinnipiac University alumni and a sister of Alpha Delta Pi. She enjoy cupcakes,Broadway musicals, Forever 21 ,giraffes, peacock feathers, orchids, lillies and anything Disney.

 

Chocolate Frosting Cups

No alcohol in these shots. Just pure chocolatey goodness. If you’ve heard of the popular bakery, Sprinkles, then you know that they sell something known as a frosting shot. Brilliant idea. It really doesn’t get much simpler. It is basically a thick chocolate mousse. The best part? It is gluten free and dairy free! I did not think of this recipe. I’m not that good I got this recipe from Chocolate Covered Katie who has been a really great inspiration to me being gluten free and dairy free. Thank you so much. http://www.chocolatecoveredkatie.com

Chocolate Frosting Cups

Ingredients

 

  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon cocoa powder (use
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • sugar to taste (or you can leave out the sugar)
  1. Open the coconut milk, and leave the can (or transfer to a bowl) uncovered in the fridge overnight. (Don’t shake the can before opening.) It needs to be thick.
  2. Once thick, transfer to a bowl and whip in your cocoa, vanilla, and sugar with a fork.
  3. Stored uncovered in the fridge, and the little cups will get thicker kind of like frosting.

Banana Cupcakes with Browned Butter Frosting

Have some ripe bananas that no one is eating and you don’t want to throw away? Let them eat cake! Banana cupcakes that is! Now those bananas won’t go to waste!

Banana Cupcakes with Browned Butter Frosting  

For the Cupcakes
  • 1 box (15 oz) Betty Crocker Gluten Free yellow cake mix
  • 1 cup mashed ripe bananas (2 medium)
  • 1/3 cup buttery spread (such as Earth Balance), melted
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

For the Frosting

  • 1/3 cup buttery spread (such as Earth Balance)
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons rice milk or coconut milk
  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Line a standard cupcake pan with cupcake liners. In large bowl, stir cupcake ingredients just until dry ingredients are moistened. Spoon batter evenly into cupcake cups.
  2. Bake 16 to 18 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from pan to cooling rack. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.
  3. In 1-quart saucepan, heat 1/3 cup buttery spread over medium heat just until light brown, stirring occasionally. (Watch carefully because it can burn very quickly.) Remove from heat. Cool slightly, about 5 minutes.
  4. In medium bowl, beat buttery spread, powdered sugar, vanilla and enough rice or coconut milk until smooth and spreadable. Spread frosting over cooled cupcakes.
  5. Garnish with a slice of banana.

New Years Eve

It is the eve of New Years Eve which means time to entertain again! Breakout the cookware, heat up the oven and crack open some eggs because we’re going to ring in 2012 big time!

First up, some delicious finger foods.

Ultimate Chicken Fingers

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup Gluten Free Bisquick mix
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt or Garlic salt (I would actually use both – 1/2 teaspoon of each)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 3 boneless skinless chicken breast halves, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch strips
  • 1 egg, slightly beaten
  • 3 tablespoons buttery spread (such as Earth Balance) melted
  1. Heat oven to 450ºF. Line cookie sheet with foil; spray with cooking spray.
  2. Mix Bisquick mix, cheese, salt, garlic salt, ground black pepper and paprika in 1-gallon resealable plastic food-storage bag.
  3. Dip half the chicken strips into egg; place in bag of Bisquick mixture. Seal bag; shake to coat.
  4. Place chicken on cookie sheet. Repeat with remaining chicken. Drizzle butter over chicken.
  5. Bake 12 to 14 minutes, turning after 6 minutes  until no longer pink in center.
  6. Serve with you favorite dipping sauces and fresh home fries!

Home French Fries 

This is a super simple recipe for thick cut french fries fried up at home!

Ingredients

  • 2-4 large white potatoes (depending on how many you are feeding)
  • Canola oil or olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Seasoning (whichever you like)
  1. Wash and peel potatoes (or wash really well and leave skins on for a rustic look and taste)
  2. Heat up oil in a large frying pot (We have a wok which works great) You want the oil to be HOT!
  3. Slice potatoes into long stripes (I usually cut them 1 inch thick but you can cut them thicker or thinner)
  4. Slowly drop potatoes into the hot oil.
    Fry until golden brown
  5. Place on a plate that has been lined with paper towels.
  6. Season fries with salt, pepper and seasoning of your choice. (I usually go with a little bit of garlic powder). Make sure you season the fries while they are still hot.

Now for some sweets.  How about another cocktail cupcake this time inspired form a classic drink ordered by young and old. A Shirley Temple Cupcake.

Shirley Temple Cupcake

Ingredients

For the Cupcake

  • 1 and 1/2 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose gluten free flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup Earth Balance Buttery Spread, at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup Cherry 7-Up, at room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 tablespoon maraschino cherry juice
  • Red food coloring

For the Buttercream Frosting

  • 1/2 cup Earth Balance Buttery Spread, at room temperature
  • Pinch salt
  • 2 and 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon maraschino cherry juice

For the Garnish

  • 12 maraschino cherries with stems
  1. For the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and prepare a cupcake pan with your desired paper liners.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together 1 and 1/2 cups of flour, baking powder, and salt.  Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of your standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the buttery spread and sugar together and beat, on medium-high speed, until fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
  4. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
  5. Reduce the mixer speed to low, and alternate adding half of the flour mixture and half of the Cherry 7-Up, mixing well and scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.  Repeat until the flour and Cherry 7-Up are completely added to the batter.
  6. Add the vanilla and almond extracts, mixing well.
  7. Place about 3/4 cup of the cupcake batter in a separate small bowl and add the remaining 1 tablespoon of flour, maraschino cherry juice, and red food coloring (to your desired tint).
  8. Evenly distribute the red cupcake batter among your prepared liners, about 1-2 teaspoons per cupcake, gently smoothing out the batter to make sure it is flat.
  9. Once the red batter is in place, evenly distribute the remaining cupcake batter among the cupcake liners, making sure not to mix the two batters.
  10. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean.  Let cool completely before frosting.
  11. For the Buttercream Frosting: In the bowl of your standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the buttery spread until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
  12. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the pinch of salt, powdered (confectioners’) sugar, vanilla and almond extracts, lemon juice, and maraschino cherry juice, adding more powdered sugar as necessary for your desired piping consistency.
  13. Pipe as desired onto your cooled cupcakes and garnish with a maraschino cherry.

You can’t have a Shirley Temple Cupcake without sipping on an actual Shirley Temple can you!?

Shirley Temples 

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup lemon-lime soda (Sprite or 7-UP)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons grenadine syrup
  • 1 maraschino cherry
  1. In a highball glass, over ice, combine lemon-lime soda and grenadine. Stir well and garnish with a maraschino cherry.

Time for another cocktail cupcake! Here is a Margarita Cupcake

Margarita Cupcakes

For the Cupcakes

  • 1½ cups all-purpose gluten free flour
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup buttery spread such as Earth Balance, at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • Zest and juice of 1½ limes
  • 2 tablespoons tequila (your choice)
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup buttermilk substitute (mix 1 cup of rice milk (or coconut milk) with 1 3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar. To ensure that the mixture doesn’t get lumpy, mix the cream of tartar with 2 tablespoons of rice milk. Once mixed, add the rest of the cup of rice milk. Cream of tartar is an acid and will simulate the acidic environment of buttermilk.) – then only use half a cup of the substitute

To Brush the Cupcakes

  • 1 to 2 tablespoons tequila (your choice)

For the Tequila-Lime Frosting

  • 1 cup buttery spread, at room temperature
  • 2¾ cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons tequila (your choice)
  • Pinch of coarse salt
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a cupcake pan with paper liners; set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the gluten free flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.
  3. In an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat the buttery spread and sugar together until pale, light, and fluffy (about 5 minutes).
  4. Reduce the mixer speed to medium and add the eggs one at at time, mixing thoroughly after each addition.
  5. Scrape the sides of the bowl and add the lime zest, lime juice, vanilla extract and tequila. Mix until combined. (The mixture may start to look curdled at this point, it will all come back together)
  6. Reduce the mixer speed low. Add the dry ingredients in three batches, alternating with the buttermilk substitute  in two batches. Mix only until just incorporated, using a rubber spatula to give it one last mix by hand.
  7. Divide the batter between the cupcake cups. Bake for approximately 25 minutes or until just slightly golden and a skewer shows only moist crumbs attached, rotating the pan at the halfway point.
  8. Allow cupcakes to cool for 5 to 10 minutes, and then remove to a cooling rack. Brush the tops of the cupcakes with the 1 to 2 tablespoons of tequila. Set the cupcakes aside to cool completely before frosting them.
  9. To make the frosting, whip the buttery spread on medium-high speed of an electric mixer using the whisk attachment for 5 minutes. Reduce the speed to medium-low, and gradually add the powdered sugar, mixing and scraping the sides of the bowl until all is incorporated. Give it a mix on medium speed for about 30 seconds. Add the lime juice, tequila and salt mix on medium-high speed until incorporated and fluffy. If the frosting appears a bit too soft, add some additional sugar, one spoonful at a time until desired consistency is reached. Frost cupcakes and garnish, if desired, with lime zest, an additional sprinkling of salt and a lime wedge.

And last but not least a frozen margarita with a twist of cranberry!

Frozen Cranberry Margaritas

Ingredients

  • 1 can (11 1/2 ounces) frozen cranberry juice cocktail concentrate, thawed
  • 2 cans (12 ounces each) lemon-lime soda (Sprite or 7-UP)
  • 5 cups water
  • 1 cup tequila (your choice)
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  1. In 3-quart plastic container, beat all ingredients with wire whisk or spoon until well blended.
  2. Cover and freeze at least 24 hours until slushy. Serve in margarita glasses with sugared rims

There you have it! A wonderful New Years Eve line up that will have you cheering all night long!

ENJOY!

Malibu Bay Breeze Cupcakes

If you like the sweet, girly taste of a Malibu Bay Breeze then you are going to enjoy this delicious cocktail inspired cupcake.

Malibu Bay Breeze Cupcakes

Ingredients

For the Cupcakes

  • Betty Crocker Gluten Free Yellow cake mix
  • Cranberry Juice (your favorite – sweetened)
  • Ingredients listed on cake box (you will not need the water)

For the Filling

  • 1 cup cranberry juice
  • 1 can crushed pineapple in its juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 4 tablespoons cornstarch

For the Frosting

  • 1 cup of buttery spread (such as Earth Balance), softened
  • 5 C. powdered sugar (give or take)
  • 1/4 C. Malibu Rum (or coconut rum of your choice)
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • Red Food Coloring
  • Sweetened coconut flakes (for optional garnish)
  • Cherries with stem (for optional garnish)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Prepare a cupcake pan with cupcake liners. Set aside.
  2. Prepare Betty Crocker gluten free cake mix, replacing the water with cranberry juice. Bake cupcakes following package directions. Remove from cupcake pan and let cool completely.
  3. Heat cranberry juice, pineapple, sugar, and cornstarch on medium-high heat until boiling, stirring often until mixture thickens and loses the “milky” appearance. Remove from heat to cool.
  4. Fill a plastic sandwich bag with cranberry pineapple mix. Pipe into center of cupcakes. Push your (clean) thumb into the center of the cupcakes to make room for the filing. Be careful you don’t push all the way through the bottom of the cupcake.
  5. Cream buttery spread until smooth. Add powdered sugar and rum alternately until desired consistency is reached. Color with a few drops of red food coloring until you get the desired color you want. Pipe onto cooled cupcakes. Garnish with sweetened coconut flakes and top with a cherry.