I can’t believe it’s been over 2 weeks since I blog. I apologize. Time seems to be slipping away from me way too fast already this year. A bad cold the week before last and a week of crazy busy preparation for our Semester 1 Board of Examiners meeting at work have meant what little energy I’ve had in my spare time has been spent on vegging out in front of the TV and communing with the sofa.
Things are a little calmer now, and I’m feeling mostly better (apart from some stubborn sinus congestion which seems to have taken a real liking to my nasal passages and refuses point blankly to shift. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrr).
I haven’t done anything remotely crafty for a couple of weeks so I’m starting to get that itchy palmed feeling where you know you need to start something. Anything. I managed to stave it off for a while last night by doing a little baking – something else I haven’t done in some time.
A while ago by good buddy Louise surprised me with this fabulous little flippy cupcake recipe book and I’ve been meaning to try something from it for ages. Last night I delved through my baking stash and picked out a recipe that I had all the ingredients for (thrifty baking – love it!). I ended up making Caramel Chocolate cupcakes with chocolate butter cream and chopped nuts and chocolate chip topping. Damn fine they were too. Of course Kendo is back on his diet so banned me from having them in the house – not that my work colleagues are complaining about that today.
Here’s the recipe, should you wish to give it a bash. Sorry for any US readers, it’s in UK measurements and I haven’t got the time to convert it.
Caramel Chocolate Cupcakes
100g (4oz) Dark chocolate
140g (5oz) unsalted butter
145g (5oz) brown sugar
80g (3oz) golden syrup
155ml (5 fl oz) milk
125g (4 ½ oz) plain flour
40g (2oz) self-raising flour
1 egg – lightly beaten
For the topping:
150g (5oz) butter – softened
250g (90z) icing sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
2 teaspoons hot water
chopped nuts and chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 170oC/ 340oF/GM 4
1. Line a bun tin with cake cases
2. place chocolate, butter, sugar, syrup and milk in a small saucepan. Stir over a low heat until melted and smooth. Leave to cool for about 15 minutes.
3. Sift the plain flour and self-raising flour into a bowl.
4. Add the flour into the caramel mixture. Next, stir in the egg. Mix until just combined.
5. Divide the mixture equally between the paper cases. Bake for about 30 minutes. Leave to cool on a wire rack.
6. For the toping, beat together the butter and icing sugar. Combine the cocoa powder with the water and add to the mixture. Beat until smooth and creamy. Swirl over the cupcakes adding chopped nuts (I used pecans) and chocolate chips to finish.
I actually only baked mine for 25 minutes, and there was a little too much batter for 12 cupcakes (so I made a few extra). They were very good though.
Mostly this week I've been upset by our total LACK of snow here. We had about a half inch fall on Sunday/Monday and it was gone by Tuesday morning. How the chuff am I supposed to help Egg make his first snow man when there's no bloomin' snow?? It's not on. I'm sure if I was down South where things have ground to a stand still I'd probably be complaining about too much of the white stuff, but I'd still like a little. Just a couple of inches. A snowman's worth isn't too much to ask....is it?
I have booked a day off work tomorrow (taking back some of the lieu time I racked up last week) so I’m planning to have 2.5 hours of crafty time to myself in the morning while Eggman and Gracie are at school. Fingers crossed nothing crops up between now and then! Hopefully it means I’ll have crafty things to share before the weekend (for a change).