Sunday, March 17, 2013

Paddy's Day Cupcakes

I've come to this recipe a few ways via the Taza website and Smitten Kitchen and posted it before but here it is again, this time I made mini cupcakes to bring to a St. Patrick's Day party and I also tried making marshmallow fondant to put festive shamrocks on top.

First make the cupcakes
1 cup stout, like Guinness
2 sticks butter (if unsalted you also need 3/4 teaspoon salt)
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 eggs
2/3 cup sour cream

Put the butter, cocoa powder, and stout on the stove and heat until butter is melted and cocoa is mixed in, let cool to room temperature (so you don't cook the eggs when you add it to them)
Mix together dry ingredients in a bowl
In the mixer combine eggs & sour cream, then add mixture from the stove and lastly add dry ingredient mixture - now your batter is done!
Cook cupcakes at 350 for about 15 minutes or longer if a toothpick doesn't come out clean

While those cool make the Filling

Chocolate Ganache Filling
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon Irish whiskey
* if this isn't enough double the recipe

chop up the chocolate put it in pot on the stove with butter and cream, stir constantly until chocolate melts and everything is combined, turn off heat and mix in whiskey
Using a pastry bag, inset the tip into the middle of the cupcakes and squeeze out the ganache while slowly lifting up the pastry bag so the cupcakes have ganache in the center

Irish Cream Frosting 
3 cups powdered sugar
1 stick of butter at room temperature
3 tablespoons Irish cream

whip the butter, add sugar and Irish cream until smooth
Frost the cupcakes

Marshmallow Fondant
4 ounces mini-marshmallows
1 tablespoon water
1/4 pound powdered sugar (and extra for keeping things from sticking)
butter or shortening to grease your hands

Heat up the marshmallows and water on the stove until they melt, then mix in half of the powdered sugar
Put powdered sugar on your work surface, turn out marshmallow on to work surface, grease your hands with butter or shortening, start to knead the the marshmallows, add the rest of the sugar and keep kneading until well mixed and smooth, you can either add food coloring now or later... form into a ball, wrap in saran and store in fridge in a ziploc bag overnight (can be made a few days ahead). When you're ready to use remove from fridge, roll it out and cut out the shapes you want, if you didn't add food coloring and want to color the fondant mix it in when you remove it from the fridge.

* The recipe I found was for frosting a cake so it called for 4x the amounts shown here but that is way too much for decorations so I only make 1/4 of the original recipe

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Irish Soda Bread

I've been reading that traditional Irish Soda Bread just has five ingredients so I tried to find a 'traditional' recipe.

3 1/2 cups flour
1 tablespoon caraway seeds
1 tablespoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups buttermilk

Preheat oven to 425
Mix together all the dry ingredients then add the buttermilk and mix until you can form a ball.
Knead the dough on a floured board until it holds together, this shouldn't take too long
Shape the dough into a round loaf

Place the loaf on a floured baking sheet, slice a big 'x' across the top and bake for about 35 minutes