Well, I'd say my first blog give away was a success! haha. I had a total of 8 entries so for those of you who commented, you're odds of winning were pretty good :) So I won't make you wait any longer to see who won. The winners of a set of 3 Halloween wine bottles are... Sarah Edwards and Sharon Cox! Congratulations ladies! (I'll email y'all tonight). Their favorite things about fall are also some of mine: nicer weather, beautiful fall colors, pumpkin & cinnamon foods and comfy/cute fall clothes. Thank you to everyone who commented, I really love hearing from you all!
In keeping with the fall theme, I wanted to show y'all some cupcakes that I made for a coworkers last day. I asked her what flavor cupcakes she would like and she immediately said pumpkin! So I thought of these pumpkin spice latte cupcakes that I'd seen on a blog called Annie's Eats. They're supposed to be similar to the delicious, and somewhat addicting, Starbucks drink that they bring out every year at this time. I tried to make the cupcakes look like Starbucks' drinks with the green wrappers and straws :). This drink is like the unofficial sign of the beginning of fall! If you've ever had one then you know what I'm talking about. The recipe on Annie's Eats has a pumpkin spice cake that is made from scratch, but I didn't really have time for that. So I turned to a cook book I have, The Cake Doctor, which always starts with cake mixes then customizes them to create something delicious that tastes like it's made from scratch. I still had to add some espresso powder that was in the inspiration recipe to the Cake Doctor recipe. BUT, I couldn't find espresso powder at the grocery store so I ground up some instant coffee in my food processor and it seemed to work just fine. The topping is just homemade, sweetened whipped cream, and that recipe came from the Annie's Eats page. Here is the Pumpkin Spice Cake recipe adapted from Annie's Eats and The Cake Doctor.
Pumpkin Spice Latte Cupcakes
350 degrees, makes 24-30 cupcakes
1 package (18.25 ounces) plain spice cake mix
1 can of pureed pumpkin (15 ounce)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
3 large eggs
3 tablespoons espresso powder (or finely ground instant coffee)
For the topping:
2 1/4 cups heavy cream, chilled
1/4 cup powdered sugar
Caramel ice cream topping
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line your muffin tins with baking cups.
2. Place all the ingredients in a large bowl and beat with an electric on low speed until moistened, 30 seconds. Turn the mixer speed to medium and beat for 2 more minutes while scraping down the bowl. The batter should be smooth, but it will be fairly thick.
3. Fill you baking cups about 1/2 full with batter. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick poked into a cupcake comes out clean.
4. Let the cupcakes cool for a couple minutes in the pan then remove them and place on a wire rack.
5. While the muffins are still warm, brush the tops with strong brewed coffee or espresso. Brush each cupcake a couple times.
6. After brushing the cupcakes, you can make the whipped cream. I like to chill the bowl that I'm going to use so it keeps the cream nice and cold. You can either use a stand mixer or a hand mixer. Pour the chilled cream into your chilled bowl and start mixing on low using the whisk attachment. Gradually increase to high speed and after a minute or so, mix in the powdered sugar. Beat until stiff peaks form.
7. Transfer the whipped cream into a piping bag and top each cooled cupcake. Then drizzle with caramel sauce and sprinkle with cinnamon.
These were a HUGE hit at work! The whipped cream topping was really perfect for this type of cupcake. I know I'll be making them again this season. Well, that's it for tonight. Thanks again to everyone who commented on the wine bottle post, and to everyone who reads the blog. You guys are great!