Welcome to Kimi's Cupcake Creations

I love creating new cupcake flavors - from the very basic to the very creative! I especially enjoy creating favorite cocktail flavors! Follow along as I share my creative cupcake stories and photos!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Back from the beach!

Just returned from a fabulous trip to Daytona Beach with friends.  We went for my friend's daughter's national dance competition and it was awesome!  I think it's the longest I have gone without making a single cupcake in about 3 months though!  Happily, I received a request from a school friend to make cupcakes for tomorrow, so I am excited to get back into the swing of things!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Creme de menthe deliciousness

Back from Mobile - fabulous wedding and a very  happy couple!  Had a good time traveling with friends too.  Just had to make some cupcakes upon my return home, though.  I decided to make one of Janie's favorite recipes - actually a cake, but she turned it into a cupcake, so I figured why couldn't I?  I had all the ingredients so why not?  I don't think they turned out as pretty as her's did in her last big presentation, but "just for fun" (and the fact that I wanted to take some cupcake goodness into the workshop at school tomorrow), they turned out ok.  It's white cake (started with Duncan Hines, following the recipe and added the instant vanilla pudding and sour cream) made with the half water/half creme de menthe, topped with chocolate fudge sundae topping and then frosted with whipped cream and creme de menthe frosting.  I garnished these with chocolate shavings and a mint leaf.  So glad I bought my own mint plant - I think I've pulled mint leaves from it three or four times in just the 2 weeks I've had it!

Friday, June 10, 2011

It HAS BEEN a flip-flop day in the land of Kimi's cupcake creations!

By golly, I think I've done it!  I finally "perfected" a chocolate cupcake recipe (yea, I know that earlier, it was the basic vanilla I was wanting to perfect), but I was in the mood for chocolate today.  So I went through my recipes and laid out the 4 I have printed out - a couple I've tried, a couple not.  I chose this recipe from the for the love of cooking (http://fortheloveofcooking-recipes.blogspot.com/2010/12/super-moist-chocolate-cupcake-with.html )site and tweaked it just a bit.  My main change was to use boiling coffee in place of the boiling water, since that is what my bestest cupcake buddy, Janie, taught me to do with chocolate cupcakes. BTW, she called from IL with some very exciting news today - she may be a huge step closer to opening up HER own storefront!! YAY!!  How I would LOVE to move back up there and help her out.  I think maybe she would like for me to as well. :) Alas, with 5 years left to go until full retirement from teaching, I'm afraid it just won't work for me now. :(  She and I chatted, too, about how to possibly make our basic vanillas taste more like the mix - yea, I guess we're weird like that - but we both prefer the taste of a "tweaked" mix over the regular TFS recipes.  SO, my thoughts are too use this chocolate recipe and turn it into a basic vanilla, by using the boiling water called for and substituting the cocoa powder with powder milk or the instant vanilla pudding, which is one of the things we add to our mix recipes.  I won't be able to try it until Monday, though, as this weekend is a wedding in Mobile, AL.  I will definitely let you all know, though!

Another great thing, today, too, was the discovery of a butter cream that held its shape!  I went in Google and typed in crusted butter cream.  I found this recipe that makes a ton, so I halved  it.  http://www.cakeartisan.com/2009/01/crusting-cream-cheese-buttercream/ It still made quite a bit!  And it definitely seems to hold its shape better than any other recipe I have tried.  I just had to add more powder sugar than I normally do - which I guess I could have figured out by myself, but I was always just a little too reluctant to overload it.  But, I followed this exactly (using half of the amounts) and it truly did turn out fabulously! I took out part of the original frosting to make chocolate (added a couple of tablespoons of good cocoa powder) and still have quite a bit of the basic butter cream left.  I plan to freeze it for Monday's cupcakes - no matter what "flavor" I may choose to make.

Unfortunately, no photos to share.  I was in a hurry to get the chocolate ones to my son, Alex, and his roommates - they just moved into a new apartment in downtown Atlanta and I wanted to take cupcakes as a little housewarming.  (I already took them a vacuum cleaner!  Let's hope they use it!)  I will definitely take pictures of whatever I make on Monday.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

It's a flip-flop kind of day!

One of my favorite sayings, "Dear Lord, let this be a flip-flop day" is hanging on my hall wall - to be seen every day when I walk down my stairs.  I picked it up on my recent trip to Tybee Island with best friend, Janie, her daughter, Megan, and my daughter, Erica.  A lovely Christmas gift from Erica it was - we all went on Spring Break and had a FABULOUS time!  So, now in my world, a "flip-flop" day is the best day I can have!  And today's been a "so-so" kind of flip-flop day - mostly inspired by these cupcakes.  I've been busy getting my "bakers corner" cleaned and set up.  Thanks to my buddy, Cathy, whose neighbors left a perfectly wonderful bakers rack at her house when they moved (vowing to come and get it - 8 months ago), I have now "adopted" a good size bakers rack with perfect storage shelves.  It has now come in very handy to store my cupcake boxes, display trays, and "pretties" that I always use for decoration in my boxes.  I scrubbed it all clean and it is now loaded with my cupcake paraphernalia. 

I also finished off my pina colada cupcakes for a Norcross teacher friend who is getting ready for a girl's weekend at the lake.  And, here they are! (The 3 with the umbrellas are "naked" on the inside per Lori's request for one of her friends.)
Basic vanilla (no brown sugar this time), filled with a pina colada, pineapple rum and pudding filling, and frosted with pina colada and pineapple rum butter cream.  I added just a 1/4 cup of shortening hoping to help "solidify" the frosting since I added all that liquid, but unfortunately, it's still pretty soft.  I garnished with fresh pineapple triangles and maraschino cherries. Hope they like 'em!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Still trying to achieve that perfect vanilla cupcake!

It's day 2 at Kimi's Cupcake Creations (Just FYI, I KNOW I won't be writing a new post EVERY day) and I am still on that elusive hunt for a perfect vanilla cupcake recipe.  I love my "starter mix", typically Duncan Hines, to which I add a box of instant vanilla pudding and sour cream (thank you my friend, Janie for YOUR perfect recipe), but I just have this desire to find one TFS (totally from scratch) that tastes just as yummy.  So far, no such luck.  I did finally find a sour cream recipe that seemed pretty popular (of course, my first taste-testers were 22 year old guys who would probably think shoe leather was pretty tasty.  But I will say, one of those 22-year olds was my son, and his comment is one of my all-time favorites, "I want this flavor in my mouth ALL the time!"), so despite that particular accolade, I felt the desire to do additional testing.  I started with this sour cream-vanilla cupcakes recipe from http://www.epicurean.com/ and added some "tweaks" of my own.  I must say, I am fairly happy with the results - both in looks and taste.  There was a little bit of sinkage in the middle, but nothing drastic, and the taste is very flavorful.  Here is a picture of 10 of them.  (Unfortunately, I only got 11 out of this particular batch and I ate one already.)  If you happen to detect a shine on top, that's the pineapple rum/syrup mix that I added as a glaze.  These will be finished off with a filling made with pineapple sundae topping and pineapple rum and then frosted with a pineapple rum butter cream.  The pineapple rum is a glorious gift from my mom and dad upon their recent return from a 20-day cruise to the Caribbean (a happy 75th birthday present from daddy to mom)!

Here is what they look like without filling or frosting - a little browner than maybe a typical vanilla cupcake, but I'm sure that's due to the 1/4 cup of brown sugar I used in place of 1/4 cup of the granulated.
And with the pineapple rum topping filling:
Frosted with the pineapple rum butter cream:
And garnished with a cherry on top!  (I only had 6.) I would garnish with a fresh pineapple tidbit as well if I had them and if these were going to "real" people.  I will probably take a few to share with my hair cut lady this afternoon.  She's a real person; these are just "practice" cupcakes!
The original recipe can be found on above-named website.  Here is what I did to tweak it:

Pineapple Rum Island Cupcake
 2 large eggs
3/4 c granulated sugar
1/4 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. oil
1 1/2 t. vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups self-rising flour
1/2 c. sour cream

2 T pineapple rum
2T corn syrup

Stir together and brush on warm cupcake.

1/2 c. pineapple sundae topping
3T pineapple rum

1 stick unsalted butter
1/4 c. shortening
3-4 T pineapple rum
1 box powdered sugar

Beat butter and shortening until fluffy.  Add pineapple rum and blend.  Add powdered sugar until desired consistency.  Pipe or spread frosting on cupcakes.


Preheat oven to 350 F.  Line 12 standard cupcake cups with paper liners.

In large mixing bowl, with mixer on medium speed, beat the eggs and sugars for about 2 minutes or until light and creamy.  Add the oil and vanilla and mix for about 1 minute or until well blended.  Beat in flour on low until blended.  Add sour cream and beat until smooth and well blended.

Fill each cup approximately 2/3 full.  Bake for 18-20 minutes - until toothpick comes out clean.  Let cool in pan for about 10 minutes and then transfer cupcakes to rack to finish cooling.

Brush on glaze while still somewhat warm.

Core cupcakes (I use an apple corer - works fabulously!) and fill with pineapple filling.  I put mine in a small  freezer baggie, cut one corner and pour into the cupcake hole.

Frost with pineapple rum frosting and garnish!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Monday, June 6 - Day 1!

Hello Cupcake Friends!  It's the start of my first official week of summer break and as I promised myself, I am creating my first ever blog page.  And of course, it's all about cupcakes!  I started creating cupcakes just a few months ago - as a result of a cake decorating class gone wicked crazy!  I gave this class to Gregory as a birthday present for him - and I decided this cake decorating idea was pretty fun.  Gregory fed this idea by giving me my very own Kitchen Aid mixer for Valentines Day - in PINK!  After making a few cakes for family and friends, though, I decided my artistic ability was not in decorating cakes.  (Truth be told, the idea of using fondant scared the heebie-jeebies out of me.) And because my real hero is my best friend from high school, Janie, and SHE had already started with the whole cupcake idea, I decided to try and follow in her footsteps.  I am nowhere near as awesome as she is, but someday, when I "grow up", I hope to be! 

I am not sure how many cupcakes I have actually made in the past five months, but a whole bunch.  I have also thrown plenty of them away (ok, except for the few that our dog, Shadow got - he loves my cupcakes no matter HOW they turn out!)  I couldn't figure out why some of them looked (and yes, even tasted) so ugly.  Well, it didn't take me all that long to figure it out - my oven was just not doing its job.  After struggling with temperature issues, uneven baking issues, and the like, I decided that if I was truly going to engage in this cupcake business, I was going to have to suck it up and buy a new oven - even though it was definitely NOT in the budget - (uhhhh, what budget?)  So, the last week of school - with 7 cupcake orders lurking on my immediate horizon, we went out and got one!  Glory cupcake Alleluia!  Kim was back in business!

Now that I have a bit more time on my hands I am hoping to perfect a few of my TFS (totally from scratch) recipes.  I am constantly on the look out for that "perfect" recipe - and always searching for that new cocktail creation.