Rainbow Vanilla Cupcakes

Rainbow Iced Vanilla Cupcakes

 

Another cupcake recipe to add to your book of favs~ Rainbow Vanilla Cupcakes !

While this new recipe is a simple twist on my Butter Cake Recipe ~ it’s the icing technique that puts this baby over the top!

If you have not yet seen the amazing plastic wrap technique for swirling colors~ whoever invented this~ is a genius!

Check it out in the video below and you will be blown away!

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Strawberry Cupcakes Sundae Style

Strawberry Cupcakes Sundae Style

Strawberry Cupcakes Sundae Style

Although these Strawberry Cupcakes Sundae Style have nothing to do with ice cream they really reminded me of a double strawberry ice cream sundae!

This new recipe for Strawberry Cake baked into jumbo cupcakes, stuffed with strawberry compote, chocolate ganache dripping everywhere and whipped cream piled high!

Now some of my A+ Students of Gretchen’s Bakery may already be asking, “What about putting these into the refrigerator since they have whipped cream on them? You taught us about butter cakes getting hard in the refrigerator!?”

Excellent questions from excellent students, click here for What is Cake? to get in on that conversation!

But I will tell you my observations with this cake recipe.

It is actually adapted from my Key Lime Cupcakes recipe and it is a velvety smooth, finely textured cake that resembles a pound cake.

I do not feel this cake is offensive if it is eaten straight out of the refrigerator, but this is a personal preference and one you should decide for yourself, do a test with one cupcake out of the refrigerator and see what you think!

If you find it is too cold to serve you can always switch up the whipped cream for buttercream icing instead and this way you can leave them out at room temperature for much longer.

One little trick I will share with you~ the Instant Pudding Variation of my Whipped Cream Recipe is super stable and held up at room temperature for over 2 hours before these little cakes were gobbled up!

That time out of the refrigerator was perfect to get everything back to perfect edible state and wow were they more than edible!

They were gone in less than 5 minutes!

As you may have noticed, I have been obsessing lately with the Jumbo Cupcake Tins to make my specialty cupcakes (like the Bananas Foster) so this ain’t your standard cupcake~ this is a cupcake dessert that requires a fork!


5.0 from 2 reviews
Strawberry Cupcakes Sundae Style
 
For those wanting to make cake layers from this recipe simple double the entire recipe for the cake below and you will get 2- 8" Layers
Serves: 6 jumbo cupcakes or 12 standard cupcakes
Ingredients
  • 2 Cups Heavy Cream
  • 20g Sugar Free Instant Jell-O pudding OR Stabilized Whipped Cream Recipe
  • ¼ Recipe Ganache
  • 1lb Fresh Strawberries
  • For the Cake Batter
  • Unsalted Butter 8 Tablespoons (112g)
  • Granulated Sugar 1 cup (200g)
  • Eggs large 2 (100g)
  • Strawberry Puree ½ cup (120ml)
  • Vanilla Extract 1 teaspoon (5ml)
  • Strawberry Flavor Extract 2 teaspoons (10ml)
  • Salt ¼ teaspoon
  • All Purpose Flour 1 cup (125g)
  • Cake Flour ½ cup (65g)
  • Baking Powder 1½ teaspoons (7g)
Instructions
  1. Separate the best looking strawberries to use for garnish on the finished cupcakes.
  2. Prepare the strawberry compote by chopping up the rest of the strawberries with 1 tablespoon of water in a small sauce pot and cook over low heat just until the strawberries start to break down & you have a sauce-like mixture, it will thicken slightly upon cooling.
  3. Cream the room temperature butter with the granulated sugar until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes)
  4. Sift both flours with the baking powder and salt.
  5. Combine the eggs and vanilla with the strawberry flavor *if using and mix well
  6. Slowly add the egg mixture while mixing on low- medium speed
  7. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl as needed.
  8. Add ½ of the flour mixture and blend just until combined
  9. Add the strawberry puree and mix just to combine and then add the remaining flour last.
  10. Add 3-4 drops of red gel paste color and mix well
  11. Portion batter evenly into 6 well greased jumbo cupcake cavities -filling about half way
  12. Bake in preheated 350° F oven for approximately 24 - 30 minutes or until they are done they will be springy to the touch when pressed gently in the center
  13. Cool completely then hollow out the centers and fill with cooled strawberry compote
  14. Spread ganache over the cupcake tops then ice with Pudding thickened Whipped Cream
  15. A ganache dipped strawberry for the garnish and serve immediately
Notes
If icing with whipped cream be sure to keep refrigerated at all times.

* See note in main text of the blog post
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Bananas Foster Cupcakes

Bananas Foster Cupcakes

Bananas Foster Cupcakes

Well this one came out of left field!

I have found at times that the least amount of thought I give to something the better it comes out! Ok not always, but sometimes!

These Bananas Foster Cupcakes are to die for!

The thought for them popped into my head; and in a matter of an hour I was mixing the banana cake and gathering my caramel ingredients!

This new recipe for Banana Cupcakes (can be made into cake layers too!) is going to make you flip your lid, but add to it Rum Buttercream and Rum Caramelized Bananas and Carmel Sauce.

Yep~ You’re welcome!

Now of course right away many will ask “can the rum be left out?” Yes of course.

Then you will simply have a banana cupcake topped with plain vanilla buttercream &  caramelized bananas since the “Fosters” part of it comes from the classical dessert that is prepared table side complete with flambè rum!

Not a terrible description if you ask me, but the rum…. oh that rum! Makes it sooooo good!

As you will see in the video tutorial I used 2 different sized cupcake molds.

One was a standard sized muffin tin and the other a Texas muffin pan which I have to say I loved way better here.

The standard muffin size is fine and honestly a much more reasonable portion size too, but the Texas jumbos really hit this one out of the park! In my opinion!

So go ahead and bake the batter into whatever you want~ Standard muffins, giant muffins, cake layers or even a sheet cake!

Just go bananas with this recipe! You will be happy you did!

By the way, I was concerned about the bananas going black on top of the cupcakes after an hour or two at room temperature.

But I brought these to my mom and she actually kept them in a tupperware container at ROOM TEMP! for 3 days and they never turned black!

They didn’t look as appetizing as they did the first day of course, but never got black! Woohoo ~ Yay for butter coated caramel rum bananas!


5.0 from 1 reviews
Bananas Foster Cupcakes
 
Preheat oven to 375°F
Make sure all of your ingredients are at room temperature
If you are using the Jumbo Muffin Tins with no liners, be sure to grease them generously
This is a building on recipes project so it is a good idea to prepare the buttercream icing in advance, add the optional rum at the last stage of mixing.
Serves: 9 Jumbo Cupcakes or 12 standard cupcakes
Ingredients
  • For the Banana Cake Batter
  • All Purpose Flour 2cups (250g)
  • Baking Powder 1 teaspoon (5g)
  • Baking Soda 1 teaspoon (5g)
  • Salt 1 teaspoon (6g)
  • Unsalted Butter 8 Tablespoons (113g)
  • Granulated Sugar 1 cup (200g)
  • Eggs large 2 (100g)
  • Vanilla Extract 2 teaspoons (10ml)
  • Super Ripe Bananas 3 medium (approx 275g)
  • Buttermilk ½ cup (120ml)
  • For the Icing & Flambè Bananas:
  • ½ Recipe Swiss Buttercream
  • 2 Tablespoons Rum *optional
  • 2 Bananas
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • Light Brown Sugar as needed (about 2 tablespoons)
  • *caramel sauce optional garnish
Instructions
  1. Cream the butter with the granulated sugar until light & fluffy (approx 3-5 minutes)
  2. Combine the eggs with the vanilla extract and slowly add to the creamed mixture
  3. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl often
  4. Add about ⅓ of the sifted flour, baking powder, soda and salt mixture to the creamed mixture on low speed and mix just until it is combined.
  5. Slowly add in half of the buttermilk mixture while mixing on medium to low speed
  6. Add another ⅓ of the dry ingredients and then the remaining buttermilk
  7. Add the last of the flour mixture last and mix just until it is combined
  8. Add the mashed bananas last
  9. Bake in preheated 375°F oven for 15 minutes then lower the temperature to 325°F and continue baking until they are done
  10. For Jumbo Muffins: total bake time is about 30 minutes, for Standard Muffins: total bake time is about 22 minutes or until they spring back gently when you press the center
  11. Prepare the buttercream recipe (if you have not already) and add the *optional rum at the last stage of mixing.
  12. Pipe the buttercream onto the cooled caupcakes and then prepare the caramelized bananas.
  13. Melt butter in a large sautè pan and then add the sliced bananas.
  14. Add the light brown sugar and cook until the sugar is melted and the bananas start to caramelize, turned them as needed.
  15. Add the rum to the hot pan and be very careful not to splash!
  16. Remove from the heat, cool slightly and top the cupcakes with the bananas foster.
Notes
For best taste serve the finished bananas foster cupcakes immediately after topping with the caramelized bananas.

They can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days with plastic wrap draped directly over the bananas to prevent browning

Un-iced banana cupcakes can be stored in the freezer wrapped well for up to 1 month

VEGANIZE THIS RECIPE!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Vegan Bananas Foster Cupcakes
 
Preheat oven to 375°F
Make sure all of your ingredients are at room temperature
If you are using the Jumbo Muffin Tins with no liners, be sure to grease them generously
This is a building on recipes project so it is a good idea to prepare the aquafaba buttercream icing in advance, add the optional rum at the last stage of mixing.
Serves: 9 Jumbo Cupcakes or 12 standard cupcakes
Ingredients
  • For the Banana Cake Batter
  • All Purpose Flour 2cups (250g)
  • Baking Powder 1 teaspoon (5g)
  • Baking Soda 1 teaspoon (5g)
  • Salt 1 teaspoon (6g)
  • Earth Balance Buttery Sticks or Vegetable shortening 8 Tablespoons (113g)
  • Granulated Sugar 1 cup (200g)
  • Ground Flax Seeds 2 Tablespoons (16g)
  • Hot Boiled Water 6 Tablespoons (90ml)
  • Vanilla Extract 2 teaspoons (10ml)
  • Super Ripe Bananas 3 medium (approx 275g)
  • Almond Milk ½ cup (120ml)
  • For the Icing & Flambè Bananas:
  • ½ Recipe Aquafaba Swiss Buttercream
  • 2 Tablespoons Rum *optional
  • 2 Bananas
  • 2 Tablespoons Earth Balance Buttery Sticks
  • Light Brown Sugar as needed (about 2 tablespoons)
  • *vegan caramel sauce for garnish optional
Instructions
  1. Cream the earth balance with the granulated sugar until light & fluffy (approx 3-5 minutes)
  2. Combine the ground flax with the hot water and let stand for 5 minutes until thickened then add the vanilla
  3. Add the flax egg mixture slowly to the creamed mixture while mixing on low speed
  4. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl often
  5. Add about ⅓ of the sifted flour, baking powder, soda and salt mixture to the creamed mixture on low speed and mix just until it is combined.
  6. Slowly add in half of the almond milk mixture while mixing on medium to low speed
  7. Add another ⅓ of the dry ingredients and then the remaining almond milk
  8. Add the last of the flour mixture last and mix just until it is combined
  9. Add the mashed bananas last
  10. Bake in preheated 375°F oven for 15 minutes then lower the temperature to 325°F and continue baking until they are done
  11. For Jumbo Muffins: total bake time is about 30 minutes, for Standard Muffins: total bake time is about 22 minutes or until they spring back gently when you press the center
  12. Prepare the buttercream recipe (if you have not already) and add the *optional rum at the last stage of mixing.
  13. Pipe the buttercream onto the cooled caupcakes and then prepare the caramelized bananas.
  14. Melt the earth balance in a large sautè pan and then add the sliced bananas.
  15. Add the light brown sugar and cook until the sugar is melted and the bananas start to caramelize, turned them as needed.
  16. Add the rum to the hot pan and be very careful not to splash!
  17. Remove from the heat, cool slightly and top the cupcakes with the bananas foster.
Notes
For best taste serve the finished bananas foster cupcakes immediately after topping with the caramelized bananas.

They can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days with plastic wrap draped directly over the bananas to prevent browning

Un-iced banana cupcakes can be stored in the freezer wrapped well for up to 1 month
For those interested in grabbing more banana recipes and healthy ones too! check out this blog at Well Being Secrets by Helen Nichols

She has compiled a list of her favorite banana recipes that I am sure you are going to love as well!  I know I am definitely trying some of them!

Like Vegan Banana Date Bread??  YUMM!

 

 

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Russian Ball Tips and Ruffle Tips Review

Russian Ball Tips & Ruffle Tips

Russian Ball Tips & Ruffle Tips

Here we are once again the Russian Decorating Tip craze is not stopping, it is only getting better!

I have tried my hand at the Russian Ball Tips & Ruffle Tips and I love them!

I made a quick video tutorial for you to share my experiences using these tips for the first time

Now let’s not forget the most important part to having success with your Russian Piping Tips.

BUTTERCREAM! You must be using a stiff consistency Buttercream Recipe which just happens to be my American Style Buttercream.

It is absolutely perfect for these tips and I know you will love the taste too!

I feel it is a cross between the Swiss Buttercream in silky smooth taste and a decorators icing in stability.

(Here is the video for the buttercream and the recipe is below)

In the video for the tips demonstration I used some vanilla cake cupcakes  and strawberry cupcakes too, just to show you how the piping techniques would look and you can pretty much use any cupcake recipe you like for your masterpieces!

The Raffaello Coconut Ruffle Cake is another project you can attempt with your new Ruffle Tips not to mention those cute little mini doll cuppies too!

Flowers and ruffles and mounds of buttercream is what we got going on here today at Gretchen’s Bakery so be sure to get your tips ordered and have some fun!

russian-ball-tips-reviewrussian-ball-tips-reviewrussian-ball-tips-review

5.0 from 1 reviews
Buttercream Recipe
 
Serves: 6 cups
Ingredients
  • Unsalted Butter 1½ Cups (3 sticks) (336g)
  • Hi Ratio Solid Vegetable Shortening 1½ Cups (336g)
  • Confectioners Sugar (Domino Brand 10X Sugar) 6 cups 720g)
  • Heavy Cream 6 Tablespoons (90ml)
  • Vanilla Extract 2 teaspoons
  • Butter Extract 1 teaspoon
  • Salt ¼ teaspoon
Instructions
  1. Combine the butter and shortening in the Kitchen Aid (or stand mixer) bowl with the paddle attachment
  2. Whip on medium to high speed for about 3 minutes.
  3. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to make sure it is evenly mixed and add the salt. Mix well.
  4. Stop mixer and add the sifted confectioners sugar all at once.
  5. Mix on low speed until incorporated , scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl and then mix on high speed for 3 minutes.
  6. Scrape the bowl again and then while mixing on low speed slowly drizzle in the heavy cream.
  7. Increase speed to high and whip for another 5 minutes
  8. Add the flavor extracts and then you are done!
  9. The icing will gain volume almost to the top of a 6qt Kitchen Aid bowl and get very white. (*If you are using a hand beater, the volume will not get as high since the hand beaters cannot incorporate air as efficiently as the Kitchen Aid or stand mixers)
 

 

 

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Sno Balls Copy Cat Recipe

sno-balls-copy-cat-recipe-1

The Hostess Sno Balls !

Another one of my favorite childhood treats!

I loved these more than Devil Dogs when I was younger (Ok I love them even still today! But I try to make wiser choices in my old age!)

However, now that I can make them homemade? This could get dangerous!

Homemade marshmallow covered in coconut and a little chocolate cake filled with buttercream tucked neatly inside.

I was almost shocked at how perfectly these came out; I mean they look exactly like the real thing!

I say “almost shocked” because well, the bottom line is that if you have all the right tools and all the right ingredients with a step by step tutorial as I’m a bout to show you, you cannot go wrong!

The only thing that will be shocking to you, is how easy these are to make!

Hostess I’m sorry to say it, but we just don’t need you anymore.


Sno Ball Snack Cake Copy Cat Recipe
 
This is a building on recipes projectso be sure to prepare the chocolate cake & buttercream recipe in advance before beginning
I have listed ¼ recipe buttercream and even that will be more than you need, but it is difficult to make a smaller batch in my opinion you can never have too much buttercream! It freezes great!
You will notice I have coconut listed in the ingredients below for either sweetened flake or unsweetened. I actually used BOTH kinds mixed together and found this to be far superior than just the one or the other ~ you can use whichever you prefer
Prepare the chocolate cake discs in advance by piping buttercream into them, then freeze until you are ready to insert them into the marshmallow
Author:
Serves: 8 Sno Balls
Ingredients
  • ½ Recipe Chocolate Cake baked in a ¼ sheet pan
  • ¼ Recipe Buttercream
  • FOR THE MARSHMALLOW:
  • Cold Water ⅓ cup (80ml)
  • Plain Gelatin Powder 1 Tablespoon (12g)
  • Granulated Sugar ½ cup (100g)
  • Light Corn Syrup ½ cup (120ml)
  • Vanilla Extract 1 teaspoons (5ml)
  • Sweetened Flake Coconut or Unsweetened Coconut 2 Cups
  • Coconut Oil 4 Tablespoons
Instructions
  1. Prepare a silicone sphere mold with a coating of coconut oil and then press approximately 2 Tablespoons coconut into each cavity
  2. In a small sauce pot bloom the gelatin in the water.
  3. After 5 minutes turn on the heat and add the sugar to the gelatin.
  4. Melt the sugar and dissolve the gelatin over a low flame, do not boil.
  5. Transfer entire contents to a mixer bowl fitted with a whisk attachment, add the corn syrup and whip on high speed until it is to resemble marshmallow.
  6. It will be cooled or slightly warm to the touch, white, fluffy and have almost tripled in volume.
  7. At this point you are to work quickly as the gelatin will begin to set once it gets cold.
  8. Transfer the entire mixture toa Pastry Bag fitted with a straight tube or a coupler with no tip inserted.
  9. Pipe the marshmallow into the prepared sphere molds almost to the top then place a filled chocolate cake immediately into the marshmallow
  10. Once the marshmallow has set at room temperature you can unmold the sno balls and serve or store in an airtight container for up to 1 week
Notes
Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week

A note about the Flexipan Molds.

I have the super expensive ones you can see, as I linked to them above.

There is a much cheaper version but they are MINI’s! Like 2ounce capacity. Click here for the mini version 2 ounce capacity silicone sphere mold

UPDATE! Here is a cheaper company for the 3ounce capacity silicone sphere mold

As I show you in the video there are other options since I know not many people are going to invest in such an expensive item to make these novelty cakes.

You can of course use muffins tins; or go for a larger family sized Sno Ball Cake instead of the individuals and you can purchase the Wilton Ball Pan Mold and this will work perfectly!

Alternatively you can go the really super cheap NO INVESTMENT ROUTE and use a standard kitchen bowl for molding the entire cake!

Get creative! Use what you have around the house! I hate investing in new tools that I will only use for certain applications!  Just clutters the kitchen!

Just remember if you are not using the flex mold you will have to line whatever molds you are using with plastic wrap or you will NEVER get those suckers out!

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Creamsicle Cupcakes

creamsicle-cupcakes

Creamsicle Cupcakes are the perfect recreation of a childhood favorite!

The classic Creamsicle Ice Cream Pop is here ~ in cupcake form!

This recipe for orange velvet cake will fast become your new go-to cake recipe but it gets better once we stuff them with vanilla panna cotta!

Iced in vanilla buttercream and topped with luscious fresh juicy oranges!

It is way easier than you think and you are going to LOVE these I promise!!

This is a building on recipes project, so with any task of that nature we have to get some base recipes prepared in advance so be sure to get your Buttercream Recipe done ahead of time, and I actually baked these cupcakes 1 week ahead! yep, with my tricks for freezing cakes, you can get so much more done!

Yay efficiency!

The panna cotta has to be done only once the cupcakes are baked and fully cooled since the gelatin will set pretty fast if you are not ready to go when it is!

Check out the video below I try to make it step by step EASY for you to follow along and blast out these Creamsicle Cupcakes for yourself in no time!

Creamsicle Cupcakes
 
Author:
Serves: 12 Cupcakes
Ingredients
  • ½ Recipe Buttercream
  • 5-6 large oranges for the garnish *optional
  • For the Cake:
  • Unsalted Butter 8 Tablespoons (112g)
  • Granulated Sugar 1 cup (200g)
  • Eggs large 2 (100g)
  • Buttermilk 3 Tablespoons (45ml)
  • Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons (90ml)
  • Orange Zest 1
  • Vanilla Extract 1 teaspoon (5ml)
  • Orange Blossom Water1 teaspoon (5ml) *optional
  • Salt ¼ teaspoon
  • All Purpose Flour ¾ cup (94g)
  • Cake Flour ¾ cup (90g)
  • Baking Powder 1½ teaspoons (7g)
  • Orange Gel Paste Color 10 drops *optional
Instructions
  1. In a mixing bowl (with the paddle attachment on your stand mixer, or with a hand beater) cream the softened butter with the granulated sugar and salt until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes)
  2. Sift both flours with the baking powder.
  3. Combine the orange blossom water, vanilla extract, orange zest and orange juice together and mix well
  4. Add the eggs one at a time to the creaming butter mixture and scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl after each addition
  5. Add ⅓ of the flour mixture to the creaming butter/sugar and mix until just combined.
  6. Slowly add the half of the entire amount of the juice mixture while mixing on low- medium speed.
  7. Add another ⅓ of the flour, mix just until combined
  8. Then add the remaining juice mixture while mixing on low speed
  9. Add the last of the flour and mix to combine
  10. Add the buttermilk while mixing on medium speed until combined
  11. Add the gel paste color and mix well
  12. Portion batter evenly into 12 cupcake cavities -filling each about ⅔ each
  13. Bake in preheated 350° F oven for approximately 20 minutes or until they are done they will be springy to the touch when pressed gently in the center
  14. Cool completely then prepare the panna cotta recipe listed below
PANNA COTTA RECIPE

 

Panna Cotta
 
Do not prepare the panna cotta until the cupcakes have been baked and fully cooled
You can use 1 vanilla bean pod in place of extract if you prefer, you will simply steep it with the heavy cream
Author:
Serves: ¾ cup
Ingredients
  • Heavy Cream ¼ Cup (60ml)
  • Granulated Sugar 2 Tablespoons (28g)
  • Gold Gelatin Sheets 1
  • Buttermilk ¼ cup (60ml)
  • Salt pinch
  • Vanilla Extract 1 teaspoon (5ml)
Instructions
  1. Bloom the gelatin sheets in cold water for 5 minutes to soften
  2. Combine the heavy cream & sugar in a sauce pot and heat to dissolve the sugar, it is not necessary to boil but you can bring it to about 180°F
  3. Squeeze the excess water from the gelatin and the add it to the hot cream, whisk to dissolve
  4. Add the cold buttermilk and the salt, stir well.
  5. Hollow out the cupcakes as shown in the video and pour the cooled panna cotta into each cavity.
  6. Refrigerate until set (at least 2 hours or overnight covered with plastic wrap)
  7. Ice the cupcakes as shown in the video with buttercream using the #826 Ateco Tip and then decorate with fresh orange segments in the form of a rose.
  8. *I used ganache on some of the cupcakes to resemble my favorite flower the black eyed susan, this is optional but if you decide to do it I used the#2 Ateco Tip found in the Gretchen's Bakery Essentials cake Decorating Kit
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