Wednesday, March 17, 2010

happy st. paddy's day!

As an individual with a smidge of Irish heritage, I decided to be festive. I donned my green sweater, green earrings, and obnoxious green argyle socks. I also wanted to make a fun and festive treat to share with my coworkers. I did some searching and just by pure Irish luck, I stumbled upon a recipe for "Chocolate Whiskey and Beer Cupcakes" from smitten kitchen. Other websites and blogs also refer to them as "Irish Car Bombs" after the cocktail.

So I diligently made my shopping list and I trekked over to the grocery to get all my essentials. I wanted my cupcakes to taste yummy, so I forked over the extra $.75 for the "good" chocolate. Sadly, my local craft store didn't have any St. Patrick's Day cupcake liners, so I was forced to go with plain white, but I grabbed some green sugar sprinkles to dress them up a bit.

Early this morning, I was ready to start my baking. I pulled my hair back, put on a special apron, and gathered all my bowls and ingredients. I even turned on the Food Network for some baking inspiration. I read through the beginning parts of my recipe and it suddenly dawned on me that I have never made a cake or cupcakes from "scratch" before. I usually rely on my best buds Betty Crocker or Duncan Hines.

At this point I was really nervous. What if the cupcakes were dry and dense? Yuck! The recipe had a lot of positive comments, so I thought that hopefully if I followed the directions to the letter, everything would turn out fine.

After three and a half long hours, I baked 20 cupcakes, cut out their cores, filled them with chocolate ganache, and then piped on the buttercream frosting. Behold the fruits of my labor:

st. paddy's day cupcakes

I think they came out rather pretty! These cupcakes were my first try at piping frosting, and they don't look to shabby. I used a Wilton #12 tip for both the ganache filling and the frosting.

The only changes that I made to the recipe were that I baked the cupcakes for about 20 minutes, and instead of regular Bailey's Irish Cream, I used the "coffee-flavored" variety because that's all the liquor store had in nip size.

I definitely recommend this recipe. Those cupcakes were scrumdiddlyumptious, if I do say so myself.

Top of the mornin' to you!

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