Every now and then I get the urge to spend a day in the kitchen baking. This usually happens on a day when W is at work so I have no extra meals to plan. This past weekend I decided to bake a few new things.
First I tried a recipe from a cookbook I had bought quite some time ago - The Rosie's Bakery All-Butter, Cream-Filled, Sugar-Packed Baking Book: Over 300 Irresistibly Delicious Recipes. This was a simple recipe for chocolate cupcakes all using basic ingredients I had on hand. The recipe said it made a dozen. I could have filled the liners slightly less than recommended and gotten 15 cupcakes. They also would have baked a bit better.
I topped them with a basic buttercream. It is crazy easy to make and so much better than canned frosting. Here is the recipe I use:
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
4 cups powdered sugar
3-5 T cream (or milk)
vanilla, to taste
Cream the butter and add 2 tablespoons of the cream. Add in vanilla. I never measure and just pour a bit in. Slowly add in the powdered sugar. Then beat until smooth and fluffy. Add in additional cream to reach the consistency you want. This makes enough for a cake or 24 cupcakes. It is easily halved.
Then I decided to make some madeleines for myself. No one else seems to like madeleines as much as I do which is nice. I do not have to share. I made the Madeleines Au Chocolat from Madeleines which I bought in my pre-holiday cookbook craze.
I have two different madeleine pans which is the reason that the bottom two do not look as pretty as the top two. The top madeleines were cooked in a Bellemain pan. I do grease it but have skipped that step and they still turn out just as lovely. The bottom ones are baked in a Chicago Metallic pan. While the quality is nice, nothing I do makes them come out of the pan properly. I have tried butter, shortening, shortening and flour, etc. They taste just as good, but the appearance leaves much to be desired.
I also tried a recipe from Pinterest but neglected to take a photo. I made Blueberry Oatmeal Crumble Bars to use up some blueberries from the freezer. They turned out good and made a nice breakfast food the following morning. My favorite part was that they could be mixed using one bowl. The less dishes to be washed the better - especially at the end of a big baking day.