Gourmet Veggie Mama

Category Archives: Baking

Hearth Bread

One of life’s great joys, as far as I’m concerned, is fresh-baked bread — preferably warm from the oven with a nice slather of butter. Sadly, though, fresh-baked bread can be hard to pull off without much notice. While I do love beer bread (which can be ready in just over an hour), it’s just not quite the same as a warm loaf of traditional yeast bread. But, so many yeast breads require multiple rises, or lengthy kneading, so this busy mama simply can’t work with that on her current schedule (or lack thereof).

hearth bread

Enter my new favorite bread recipe: King Arthur Flour’s Hearth Bread.* It’s super-easy, basically foolproof, requires only one rise and bakes in well less than an hour. Plus, I’ve adapted it so that my Kitchen Aid can do the kneading, so it requires no floured countertops or messy hands. Easy peasy. And since we’ve been thawing lots of soups from our freezer stash to enjoy in the cold weather, a nice loaf of freshly baked bread is always a welcome accompaniment.

*I let Nora, my kitchen helper extraordinaire lately, shape one of the loaves. Can you tell which one?

The recipe makes two loaves, so I always freeze one for later. That’s always a nice surprise for a rainy day!

Hearth Bread
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2 loaves
 
Ingredients
  • 1 Tbsp active dry yeast
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp salt
  • 2 cups warm water (less than 110°)
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour*
  • 2½ – 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • olive oil for greasing
  • cornmeal for dusting
Instructions
  1. Mix the yeast, sugar, salt and warm water together, and let stand until the salt and sugar are dissolved and the yeast begins to bloom.
  2. Pour the yeast mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. With the mixer running on low, add the flour cup by cup (beginning with the whole wheat) until the mixture pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure all the flour is incorporated.
  3. Switch to the dough hook and knead on low speed for 5 minutes.
  4. Let the dough rest while you grease a large bowl generously with olive oil, then knead for an additional 2-3 minutes.
  5. Shape the dough roughly into a ball and transfer it to the greased bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let it rise in a warm place until doubled, 1 to 2 hours.
  6. Preheat the oven to 400°. Punch the dough down and knead briefly by hand to press out any bubbles. Separate the dough into two roughly equal parts and shape into loaves.
  7. Dust a baking sheet with cornmeal and place the loaves on the sheet. Slash each 3 times with a sharp knife. Bake for 35-45 minutes, or until the loaves are golden brown and sound hollow to the touch. Remove from the oven and cool slightly before slicing. Enjoy!
Notes
* I like to use white whole wheat for a lighter taste. If you want a heartier loaf, use regular whole wheat; you can also substitute an equal amount of all-purpose flour if you don’t have whole wheat.

Having Our Cake and Eating It Too

Last Friday was my first full day home alone with two kids. Yikes.

The hubby was able to take about a month off for Amelia’s birth, which was wonderful — but it also means that we have some more adjusting to do now that he’s back at work. Nora is in preschool four days a week, which makes it considerably easier on me, but on Fridays, it’s all Mommy, all the time. I was pretty anxious about how it would go, given that Nora tends to get bored with just me, especially hanging around the house, and with a new baby — especially in cold and flu season — there is necessarily a lot of hanging around the house involved.

We all survived, so I count that as a victory. And, honestly, it went just fine. Trying to brainstorm fun indoor ideas (since, of course, it was rainy on top of everything else), I had asked Nora the night before if she’d like to bake cookies the next day. Nope. “I want to bake a cake,” she countered. “A vanilla cake. With vanilla frosting. And chocolate inside.”

Thankfully,* the chocolate inside idea got dropped somewhere along the way, but we did bake a vanilla cake with vanilla frosting. And it was, per her specifications, very vanilla.

photo

*For simplicity’s sake only. A chocolate ganache filling would have been delicious!

I love that Nora is getting to an age where she really likes to help out in the kitchen, and she can actually help (slightly) more than hinder. And I am pretty darn proud of myself for managing to bake a cake with a 3-year-old sous chef and a one-month-old sleeping in the Moby wrap. Skillz.

It was not a beautiful cake, which is why I don’t have a glossy, magazine-ready photo of it. It turned out little bit dry, since I left it in the oven for a couple of minutes too long while we finished up a book we were reading, and I let it cool for too long in the pan, rather than turning it out onto a rack, since it was time to put Nora down for her nap, so the bottom sunk in a little bit. But it was still delicious, and we had fun making it, which is really what counts.

Very Vanilla Cake
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 16
 
Ingredients
For cake:
  • 1¾ cups (7 oz) cake flour, plus more for pans
  • 4 eggs
  • ½ cup milk
  • 3 tsp good-quality vanilla extract
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened but still cool, cut into small pieces
For frosting:
  • 2 cups (4 sticks) butter, softened
  • 2 lbs powdered sugar, sifted
  • ½ cup milk
  • 2 tsp good-quality vanilla
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp freshly-squeezed lemon juice
Instructions
For cake:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Grease two 9-inch round cake pans and fit the bottom of each pan with a round of parchment paper. Grease the parchment and then flour the pans.
  2. Beat the eggs, milk and vanilla in a small bowl and set aside.
  3. Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat on low speed until combined. With the mixer still running, add the butter a few pieces at a time and mix until beginning to clump, with the largest pieces about the size of peas.
  4. Turn the mixer to medium-high speed and add about half of the egg mixture, beating until light and fluffy. Add the remaining egg mixture in a stream with the mixer still running. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl and then beat on medium-high speed until the mixture is well combined and beginning to look slightly curdled.
  5. Pour the batter into the prepared cake pans, smoothing with a spatula, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the cakes are golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool slightly in the pan on a wire rack and then turn out onto the rack to cool completely before frosting.
For frosting:
  1. Beat the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer on high speed until light and fluffy. Add the powdered sugar a cup at a time, beating until combined.
  2. Add the milk, vanilla, salt and lemon juice and beat until well combined and smooth.

 

Roasted Vegetable Flatbread with Goat Cheese (from Edible Austin)

A couple of months ago, I had the privilege of interviewing Jen and Alex Jackson for a profile in Edible Austin. The couple has since moved on to San Francisco (Bay Area friends, our loss is your gain!), but they were delightful to meet and chat with. I hope you’ll check out the profile here.

I was also privileged to recipe-test the flatbread that Jen and Alex shared with us for the magazine. That was the best part!

Roasted Vegetable Flatbread with Goat Cheese (Edible Austin)

I did this when eggplant, peppers and tomatoes were still bounteous, as was that peppery summer arugula, but luckily Jen and Alex provided us with a few seasonal variations that would be perfect for right about now (butternut squash, with sage and caramelized leeks, plus a great sheep’s milk cheese, anyone?).

This version, though, with summer veggies, creamy goat cheese and eggs cracked right over the pizza, is to die for, and will definitely be back on our table next summertime!

Roasted Vegetable Flatbread with Goat Cheese (from Edible Austin)

I will tell you that, although the dough is a little time-consuming to make, it is hands-down the best I’ve made in my own kitchen (and I’ve tried quite a few!). Head over to Edible Austin to read the profile and grab the recipe, and I do hope you’ll try it out yourself!

Easy Margherita Pizza + No-Knead Dough

I’ve been experimenting a lot with pizza lately. Although there is a special place in my heart for grilled pizzas, with the weather turning cooler (at least in theory), and with my pregnancy-fueled love of all things carb-y, I am turning more toward a thicker crust and an oven preparation. I’ve tried several recipes recently — Chicago-style deep dish pizza (recipe to come, once I’ve perfected it), a flatbread recipe that’s to die for (more on that soon) — but this one just may be my favorite.

Easy Margherita Pizza (with No-Knead Dough)

I was so excited when I saw Smitten Kitchen’s recipe for “lazy pizza dough” — it’s a no-knead dough that you basically mix and forget about until it’s time to stretch, top and bake. She gives options for an overnight, all-day or part-day rise, but I’m going to give you the part-day rise here, since it’s the only one I’ve tried (and it worked beautifully). We also seem to have lost our pizza stone and peel somewhere in the cross-country move (18 months or so ago… which goes to show you how often it got used), so, with some trepidation, I baked this pizza on a well-oiled baking sheet. Guess what? It still tuned out crispy and delicious. So, no special equipment required!

nora pizza

Plus, it’s Nora-approved.

Easy Margherita Pizza
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
 
Ingredients
For the dough:
  • 3 cups (375 grams) all-purpose flour
  • ½ tsp (slightly heaped) active dry yeast
  • 1½ tsp kosher salt
  • 1¼ cups warm water
For the pizza:
  • olive oil for greasing pan
  • 1 14.5-oz can crushed fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp crushed red pepper
  • 8 oz mozzarella (aged, not fresh), grated
  • 2 oz parmesan, grated
  • several fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
Instructions
For the dough:
  1. In a large non-reactive bowl, mix the flour, yeast, salt and water. The dough will be craggy, but should come together pretty well. If necessary, you can add another tablespoon or so of water.
  2. Once all ingredients are incorporated, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it sit for about 6 hours, until more than doubled in size. (See the original recipe for overnight and all-day rise options, if that timing works better for you.)
For the pizza:
  1. When the dough is almost ready, make the sauce and prepare your toppings. Preheat the oven to 500°. Oil a rimmed baking sheet generously with olive oil.
  2. Combine the crushed tomatoes, garlic cloves, salt and crushed red pepper in a blender or food processor and process until smooth.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a well-floured surface and shape it into a ball.
  4. Flour the top of the dough ball and, using well-floured hands, grab one side of the dough and let it stretch down, repeating several times.
  5. Place the stretched dough onto the prepared baking sheet and stretch and spread it with your hands until it is roughly 9 x 13 inches in size (stretching almost to the edges of the pan).
  6. Top with approximately ½ cup of the sauce, spreading evenly (reserve the rest for another use). Sprinkle the mozzarella over the sauce, and top with the parmesan.
  7. Slide the baking sheet into the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes, or until the crust is puffed and the cheese is bubbly and beginning to brown, turning once to ensure even cooking.
  8. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the basil leaves. Cool slightly, then slide onto a cutting board and cut into pieces. Serve warm with a salad, and enjoy!

 

Spiced Pumpkin Bread

Pumpkin bread. Who doesn’t love it? And it’s the perfect time of year for it, too.

Spiced pumpkin bread

Head on over to LiveMom and check out my latest post, with a great, versatile recipe for Spiced Pumpkin Bread. I’ve been tweaking it, and now I think it’s just perfect!

Double Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

I happened to notice a recipe for oatmeal cookies on the back of my box of McCann’s Irish Oatmeal one morning while cooking breakfast, so naturally I had to give it a whirl. Also naturally, I had to switch things up a bit. I’m not a fan of raisins in my oatmeal cookies, but I love chocolate chips… and I just happened to have semi-sweet and white chocolate chips on hand. I would’ve thrown some walnuts in, too, but we were out. They’d be lovely with or without.

Double Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

I am trying to involve Nora more in cooking, and baking is one of the ways we can really have fun in the kitchen. Of course, everything takes twice as long (or more), but she loves to dump ingredients into the bowl, stir, turn on the mixer — and sample, of course. One of these days I’ll be able to sit back and have her whip me up a batch of cookies. Now that’s what parenting is all about — isn’t it?

The hubby, who self-described as “not a fan” of oatmeal cookies, loved these. So did all the neighborhood kids! Oh, and I certainly ate more than my share — to that I must confess.°

Double Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies
Author: 
Recipe type: cookies
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 3 dozen
 
Ingredients
  • 1¼ cups butter, softened
  • ½ cup brown sugar, packed
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 cups quick-cooking oats
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • ½ cup white chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugars until light yellow and fluffy. Beat in the egg and vanilla.
  2. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt in a separate bowl and beat into the butter mixture on low speed, until just combined. Add the oats and beat until combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  3. Drop the batter by rounded teaspoons onto parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake for 12-14 minutes. Cool slightly, then remove to a wire rack to cool. Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

 

Perfect Strawberry Shortcake (with Scratch Biscuits!)

I know I may be pushing my luck here, trying to get in one last summery recipe before fall is officially here. But, as I am daily reminded, it still feels like summer around here, so I think it’ll be okay.

I love berries. The good folks at Driscoll’s Berries were kind enough to provide me with some of their fine berries to play with this summer (they’re the ones I usually grab at the store anyway), and strawberry shortcake has always been one of my favorites… so I set about perfecting my recipe. I have the berry part down — all you really need are fresh, ripe strawberries, a bit of sugar and some orange liqueur, if you’re feeling frisky — but I was bound and determined to make the perfect sweet biscuits from scratch. The hubby has always been the biscuit maker around our house, and he does make some amazing biscuits for breakfast now and then, but I’m definitely in charge of dessert. Sure, the standard Bisquick recipe does the trick — but I really wanted something that didn’t come from a box. And frankly, I like to make things with ingredients I already have in my pantry.

It didn’t take much trial and error to land on an easy and delicious recipe. I found this one from About.com, of all places, and it fit the bill just fine. I tried it out on my neighbors at our end-of-summer block party, and it got rave reviews. Even a strawberry-allergic neighbor gobbled the biscuits with whipped cream and came away pleased — although I’ll admit, I think the strawberries are really the star of the show here.

Strawberry Shortcake (with scratch biscuits!)

Enjoy one last taste of summer, before it’s really gone!

5.0 from 1 reviews

Perfect Strawberry Shortcake
Author: 
 
Ingredients
For strawberries:
  • 1 quart strawberries
  • 2-3 Tbs sugar (to taste)
  • splash of Cointreau or Grand Marnier (optional)
For shortcake:
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 Tbs baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 3 Tbs sugar
  • ½ cup (1 stick) butter, chilled
  • ¾ cup cream
For topping:
  • 1¼ cups heavy whipping cream
  • ½ tsp vanilla
  • sugar to taste
Instructions
For berries:
  1. Hull the berries and sliced them in half or quarter, depending on size. Toss with the sugar and liqueur (if using). Set aside while you prepare the shortcakes.
For shortcake:
  1. Preheat the oven to 425. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade and pulse to combine. Cut the butter into pieces and add to the flour mixture. Pulse until the texture resembles coarse sand.
  2. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and make a well in the center. Add most of the cream and combine with a fork until just moist. Add additional cream as necessary. The dough may not hold together well at this point — that’s okay. Let the dough rest for a minute or so.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead it, turning 2 or 3 times, until it comes together well. Pat the dough until it’s about a ¾-inch thick rectangle, and, using a 3-inch biscuit cutter, cut into 8 biscuits. (If you are like me, you may need to reshape it a couple of times to make this happen!)
  4. Transfer the biscuits to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Brush the top of each biscuit with a little cream, if desired, and bake for 10-15 minutes, or until risen and golden.
For whipped cream:
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the whipping cream, vanilla and sugar to taste. Using the a whisk attachment, whip the cream until it is light and fluffy.
To serve:
  1. Split each biscuit in half and spoon some of the berry mixture over. Top with a dollop of whipped cream.

 

Note: I received free berries from Driscoll’s Berries in exchange for experimenting with a few recipes and sharing the results with my readers, but I was not otherwise compensated, and my opinions are my own.

Bourbon Peach Cobbler

Cobbler, you guys. Seriously. This is the BEST cobbler.

Bourbon Peach Cobbler

I just love peach season. And it’s here! There nothing in this world that smells quite as good as a nice, fresh summer peach. Other than just eating them whole, or making ice cream with them, the best thing in the world to do with peaches is to make cobbler. Not just any cobbler, though. Bourbon Peach Cobbler with a perfect sweet biscuit-y topping baked right in a cast iron skillet and topped with a dollop of vanilla ice cream (Blue Bell, naturally).

cobbler a la mode

YES.

I made this cobbler* for a potluck barbecue some neighbors hosted on the 4th of July, and it was a smash hit. I don’t think I have ever gotten so many compliments on a dessert.

*Along with a cherry version, which was delicious, but I am still tweaking the recipe. Stay tuned! This just may be the Summer of Cobbler.

I transported it, along with its cherry cousin, in Nora’s little red wagon.

wagon

What, can you think of a better way to transport two hot cast iron skillets a couple of blocks? I can’t.

I have to say, I agree with the fans — this cobbler is amazing. The peach flavor really shines through, but it is deepened by the bourbon, the caramelized sugary goodness, and just the slightest hint of cinnamon. It is sublime.

I modified the recipe just a smidge, just because I’m me, but it is amazing and wonderful and I wouldn’t change a single thing next time. Oh yes, there will be a next time. This stuff is the bomb, and I have a feeling I will be making it for many a summer get-together in the future.

Bourbon Peach Cobbler
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 10-12
 
Ingredients
  • 8 peaches, peeled and thinly sliced (6 to 8 cups)
  • juice of one lemon
  • ¼ cup bourbon
  • ¾ cup sugar, divided, plus more for sprinkling
  • 2 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, divided
  • ¾ cup heavy whipping cream, plus more for drizzling
  • vanilla ice cream, for serving
Instructions
  1. Toss the peach slices with the lemon juice in a large bowl (this helps prevent browning). Mix in the bourbon, ¼ cup sugar, cornstarch and cinnamon and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate up to 3 hours, or continue with the recipe.
  2. Preheat the oven to 375°. In a food processor, combine the flour, the remaining ½ cup sugar, baking powder and salt and pulse to combine.
  3. Cut ¾ cup of the butter (1½ sticks) into small pieces and add to the food processor. Pulse until the mixture resembles coarse sand.
  4. With the processor running, pour in the cream and process until it the dough just comes together. Pulse until a dough ball forms. Do not overwork the dough.
  5. Melt the remaining ½ stick butter in a 10-inch cast iron skillet. Add the peach mixture and cook gently until heated through and beginning to thicken, about 5 minutes.
  6. Drop the dough by tablespoonfuls on top of the warm peach mixture in the cast iron skillet. The top should be mostly covered, but small gaps are okay, since the topping will puff up a little. Drizzle the top with a bit of cream, and sprinkle with a little sugar.
  7. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until golden brown and bubbly. Enjoy warm with a big scoop of ice cream.

 

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From The Farm Blog Hop

Blueberry Muffins

Two words: Blueberry. Muffins.

Berry season is here, and the farmer’s markets and stores are brimming with fresh, local strawberries, blueberries and blackberries. I do love blueberries, and my favorite way to enjoy them is in muffins. Perhaps that’s wrapped up in childhood memories for me, since my mom often made blueberry muffins for breakfast. I think they were from a  box, but they sure were good. And these are even better.

Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins ~ Gourmet Veggie Mama

Folks, these are some of the best muffins I have ever had… and I consider myself a muffin aficionado.

Before I go crazy with expressing my love for these muffins, though, I would like you to meet my new BFF. His name is White Whole Wheat Flour, and he is now indispensable in my kitchen.*

*I was not compensated in any way for this post. I just think this flour is the bee’s knees.

white whole wheat flour

White whole wheat is actually whole wheat flour — it’s just a different type of wheat that has a lighter texture and flavor than “regular” whole wheat. So, basically, it’s a nice way to get the nutritional content of whole wheat without all the heaviness and (to some) overwhelmingly hippie-ish taste.

I bought white whole wheat flour for this recipe, since it was suggested in the original (from King Arthur Flour), and I was almost out of whole wheat flour anyway. I’m a convert! Normally I wouldn’t substitute more than half the flour in a given recipe with whole wheat, but I may be more bold with this stuff.

But anyway — the muffins! My friend Andrea recommended this recipe, and it was an absolute hit. I sampled one while it was still warm from the oven, and Oh. My. So good.

Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins ~ Gourmet Veggie Mama

 

Let’s just say I ended up eating three of them right then and there. Yes, they’re healthy-ish, since they’re made with whole wheat flour. (And if you don’t share my enthusiasm for white whole wheat flour, you can use regular whole wheat flour instead — two of my friends did, with pleasing results.) But they are moist and tender and sweet-but-not-too-sweet and just downright delicious.

Enjoy! And try one still warm from the oven — it’s  a must!

Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins
Author: 
Recipe type: Breakfast
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Ingredients
  • 2¼ cups (10 oz) white whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup (7½ oz) brown sugar
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract (preferably double-strength)
  • ⅓ cup vegetable oil
  • 1½ cups buttermilk
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400. Grease a 12-cup muffin tin, or line with cupcake papers.
  2. Combine the flour, brown sugar, salt, baking powder and baking soda in a large bowl and whisk to combine and break up any lumps.
  3. Stir in the blueberries.
  4. Mix the vanilla, oil and buttermilk in a separate bowl and beat into the dry ingredients until just combined.
  5. Spoon the batter into the muffin pan, filling each cup about ¾ full. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.
  6. Cool for 5 minutes, and then turn the muffins out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Enjoy at least one while they’re still warm!

 

Busy-Day Chocolate Cupcakes

We live on a rockin’ cul-de-sac.* A little before lunchtime on Memorial Day, people started talking about bringing the grills out front and having a block party, and by 5 pm, it was a reality. There were hot dogs, burgers (including some of my own black bean burgers with goat cheese), sausage, gumbo, grilled stuffed jalapeños and all kinds of delicious desserts and sides. The hubby made some delicious cole slaw (more on that recipe later) and, for my contribution, I decided to make cupcakes.

*Yes, I am old. I totally just wrote that sentence.

Well, actually I decided to make lemon bars first, but then I decided I wanted something a little simpler. I had pinned a recipe for Busy-Day Chocolate Cake awhile back, and, lacking an appropriately sized pan, I decided to make it into cupcakes instead. And of course I had to tweak the frosting, because I didn’t have enough eggs. Spoiler alert: The new frosting is awesome, uber-simple and contains ingredients you almost certainly have in your pantry (and no eggs).

These are seriously so quick and easy that they’ll be my go-to dessert for potlucks from here on out (unless I have extra time on my hands). There were certainly no complaints about the taste, either — this dozen was gobbled up in no time!

Busy-Day Chocolate Cupcakes ~ Gourmet Veggie Mama

I had best intentions to pipe the frosting on and make my cupcakes pretty — I even found a great tutorial — but, alas, I didn’t have the right tip for the job. An offset spatula did the trick just fine, though. I’ll have to make a trip to Michael’s and try again soon. An artistic baker I am not, but I try!

Busy-Day Chocolate Cupcakes
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Ingredients
For cupcakes:
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • 6 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 Tbsp white vinegar
  • 1 cup cold water
For frosting:
  • 4 Tbsp butter, softened
  • 2¼ cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 to 3 Tbsp milk
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Line a 12-cup cupcake pan with paper liners or silicone cups.
  2. In a stand mixer (or a in a large bowl by hand), mix the flour, sugar, cocoa power, baking soda and salt.
  3. Make a well in the dry mixture and add the oil, vanilla, vinegar and water. Mix well.
  4. Fill each cupcake liner about two-thirds with batter. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean, about 20-25 minutes.
  5. Cool for 5 minutes in the pan, and then remove the cupcakes to a wire rack to cool completely.
  6. In a stand mixer, cream the butter until light and fluffy.
  7. Beat in the sugar, vanilla and milk to achieve desired consistency.

 

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