To cupcakes! Yes, this week's recipe was from Smitten Kitchen at http://smittenkitchen.com/2009/07/best-birthday-cake/.
I decided to stay true to her post through and through, and made both the yellow cake recipe as well as the sour cream frosting.
Cupcakes: I love cake flour. There's something that feels so good about putting soft, smooth flour into a homemade batter! These cupcakes were relatively simple to put together and in doing so, I felt very good about how there were turning out. My one note was that I wished I had waited a bit longer for the butter to get to room temperature. There were a few chunks left in the batter as I began spooning into the cupcake stoneware. Due to time constraints, I ended up making the cupcakes separate from the frosting (we were scheduled to see my friend, Jamie, test for her first degree black belt - WOW! - that is something everyone should see!). So, I baked 24 cupcakes (plus a 10" round cake) and of course, had to taste a cupcake while still warm. YUM! Very soft and moist. Things are looking good ...
Next day: Chocolate Sour Cream Frosting. While my sister steered clear of the recipe (and rightly so - she was baking for her boss! - no need to unnecessarily take risks in that situation!), I dove right in. I like trying new frosting recipes, especially ones that involve very little sweetness. In my opinion, frosting is nearly always too sweet. This frosting? Bittersweet chocolate, corn syrup, vanilla extract, and sour cream. Yep. Sour cream. Skeptical? I think everyone would be! Good? It's excellent! The consistency is super-spreadable and matches well with a light cake flavor (like yellow cake). It does set quick so frosting the cake/cupcakes immediately is essential.
Positives: I'm not a big fan of cake in general but the inital, right-out-of-the-oven assessment was strong. Frosting - I will definitely make it again. Very user-friendly, easy to make, and tasty.
Negatives: The cupcakes taste different as they cool/age. Hmmm. A mystery you might say ... I'm unsure as to why, but overnight they turned into a pound cake consistency. Not what you might expect from a typical yellow cake. It still tastes delicious - just unexpected and random.
Overall, I'm left wondering how we could reduce the bubbles in the recipe (and yes, I did drop the pans on the counter before baking). Thanks to my husband, I also wonder what would be different if we were to separate egg whites from egg yolks and beat the egg whites before adding them to the cake batter. Egg yolks = yellow color therefore necessary. Egg whites beaten?! Fluffiness! Which is exactly what was eventually missing from the cupcake. My husband just might have found his calling yet ... food scientist ;)
For next week, I have chosen a completely different food medium, one of my favorites: drinks!
We will be testing out a Pumpkin Spice Latte. Check it out here, http://goodcleaneating.blogspot.com/2009/09/pumpkin-spice-latte.html and then check back next week for the review!