Entries in review (14)
Off the shelf
baking book reviews
125 best Cupcake recipes
192 Pages (Paperback)
It's one of those cupcake books that doesn't have many pictures, nor is it glamourously bound & formatted, but I've baked from it for two years and it's a fabulous everyday baking book.
One of my girlfriends Cindy has the book too, and says "I love the way you when you have a surplus of an ingredient, say "nectarines" and you know you can open 125 cupcakes and sure enough there is a recipe for Nectarine Cupcakes". Yes, it's that kind of book.
Divided into sections: Chocolate, Fruit, Nuts, Adults Only, Kids' Corner, Spice it Up, New Twists, Frosting, Glazes and Fillings. The book also includes simple decorating techniques and tips, plus sidebars throughout with variation ideas.
You are sure to a find favourites amongst Orange-Scented Angel Food, Sticky Date, Very Vanilla Chocolate chip, Spiced Peach, Flourless Chocolate, Chocolate Gingerbread, Pina Colada, Chai tea, Lemon Yogurt to name a few.
One of our family favourites is the 'Banana Cupcakes' and who doesn't have those overripe bananas in the fruit bowl at one time or the other?
1 1/4 cups plain flour (all purpose)
1 tsp baking soda (bi-carb)
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 cup mashed banana (about 2 large)
1 tsp vanilla
12 cup muffin tin lined with paper cases
Preheat oven 180c
In a small bowl, mix together flour, baking soda and salt.
In another bowl, whisk together the sugar, oil, and eggs until smooth. Add banana & vanilla, beating well. Add flour mixture, stir until smooth.
Scoop batter into prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 24 to 28 minutes or until tops of cupcakes spring back when lightly touched. Let cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely on rack.
The author suggests: Chocolate Fudge Frosting, Caramel Frosting or Cream Cheese Frosting, all lovely frostings. On the day I went with a frosting not included in the book... mashed banana, beaten into a surplus of Swiss meringue I had on hand, but do try Julie Hassons Cream Cheese frosting, it's quick and delicious.
Cream Cheese Frosting
115g (4oz) cream cheese at room temperature
1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
Pinch of salt
2 1/4 cups of pure icing sugar (confectioner's sugar) sifted
In a bowl, using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat together cream cheese, butter and salt until creamy. With the mixer on low speed, beat in the icing sugar, 1/2 cup at a time so the sugar doesn't fly all over the place. Increase speed to medium high and beat until light and fluffy.
Spread frosting over cooled cupcakes and *refrigerate until ready to serve or up to one 1 day.
*allow cakes to come to room temperature before serving
125 best Cupcake recipes a fun and worthy edition to your cupcake book library.
Yummy Soup! Recipe management software for Mac.
Tried many, own several, but I love this recipe management software from Hungry Seacow Software most of all for it's easy, fast, complete drop & drag import of recipes from all the major food sites. A host of other features including full screen view for those of us (me!) that can't read a recipe off the screen to bake unless it is LARGE.
At only $20 USD for a family pack I highly recommend it.
System requirements; Mac OSX Tiger 10.4, Leopard 10.5, Snow Leopard 10.6 15 day free trial
Haven't yet graduated beyond ripping open the packet of cake mix? Then this is for you! 5 packet mixes ranging from gourmet to off the supermarket shelf were blind taste tested and reviewed by a panel of nine. This week it's Packet Mix Brownies being tested.
1. Donna Hay $ 7.99: Molten Chocolate Chunk Brownies
2. Melindas/Gluten Free $ 6.95: Chocolate Fudge Brownie
3. Greens $ 4.89: Choc Fudge Brownies
4. White Wings $ 5.32: Double Choc Fudge Brownies
5. Betty Crocker $ 5.22: Frosted Chocolate Brownies
Unmarked boxes of baked Brownies were sent to the taste testers along with review forms in order to rate each Brownie from one to five, comment on taste and texture plus an overall opinion. After collating the information the results were as follows...
From a possible score of 45
Donna Hay 33.5 comments included "MMM Yum!! I ate mine and the rest of Debbie's" Jodie
"Taste like home made, not packet" Cindy
Melindas (Gluten Free) 17.5 comments included "After taste quite powdery" Sarah
Greens 18.5 comments included "Enjoyed the icing. Favourite!" Jake
"Disgusting, I never thought brownies could taste like that" Emma
White Wings 17.5 comments included "Pathetic excuse for a Brownie" David
Betty Crocker 22.3 comments included "Fudgy taste, frosting was nice" Debbie
"Not bad" David
In this case you did get what you paid for with an easy win for Donna Hay! Pictured warm Donna Hay brownie, ready for a scoop of ice-cream!