Friday, November 20, 2009

Last day of School

Today is the last day of fast isn't it? Almost seems like just awhile back we just started the school's new year and now we are already collecting report cards! I can proudly say my girls had a good "run" this year. Overall improvements in academic and excellent remarks from teachers....can't ask for more. Thanks teachers! As usual, the school has their parties on this day where every child needs to bring in some finger food to share. I figured since my elder daughter has completed her Kindergarten this year, meaning it will be the last time I'm gonna bake for her in this school. And the teachers in my elder daughter's class enjoys my bake goodies very much. ;) So this time, I decided to make Graduation cupcakes for her, to mark the graduation of her Kindergarten. :) Took me 2 days of planning and preparation to get everything done in time for the party. :-P But I guess it's all worth it after seeing the happy faces crowding around...;) Did 3 separate designs for the cupcakes, but mainly is using butter cream and fondant for the deco. Just like the previous times, I'm using my favorite butter cake and Devil's food cake recipe again. I guess I don't need any surprises better play safe with the same recipes, hahaha!I also tried a couple of new things this time like using the fondant mould to make the teddy bears, the heart with wings and also the ribbons. Got the mini fondant mould from Kitchen Capers, so check it out. ;)Rose cupcake. No I did not buy the fondant rose mould...I made it myself! How? U-tube is how! I actually learn it from a video on u-tube that shows you how to make a fondant / gum paste rose. So I watched it a couple times and did some hands on and voilà! Will try to find the link and post it up for you all the next time. :) Love making the roses, so it's no surprise I like this design the best! But it does takes a bit of patience and a steady hand to make them. Actually kept one of this rose cupcake for myself as a reward for all the hard work I put in for making so many cupcakes for my girls!! ;)

Due to temperature, the fondant was actually giving way and softening, even though I did mould everything in advance and drying it out. You can see the graduation cap's corner tips were sagging a little! But I guess the kids wouldn't mind that, hahaha! Had used the prepackaged chocolate fondant to mould the caps since the colour is pretty dark. ;)
It was a good thing that I managed to complete everything in time and transport the cupcakes safely to school. BTW, I should probably show you what I baked for my younger daughter's party too. It's Peanut Butter-Filled Chocolate Cupcakes.
These cupcakes are not as pretty as those I made for my elder daughter but they are definitely yummy! If you are peanut butter lover, do not pass this one. I got this recipe from my new favorite cupcake book "Martha Stewart's Cupcakes".

Ingredients for Peanut Butter-Filled Chocolate Cupcakes (makes 12 normal size):
2/3 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

4 ounces semisweet chocolate ( I used 60% Lindt)

2 ounces unsweetened chocolate ( I used 85% Lindt)
3/4 cup caster sugar (I used 2 tbsp less)
3 large eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

Peanut Butter Filling (recipe follows)

Ingredients for Peanut Butter-filling (enough for 12 cupcakes):
4 tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup confectioner's sugar

3/4 cup smooth peanut butter (I used organic unsweetened)
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Stir all the ingredients together until smooth. Use immediately.
Method for Peanut Butter-Filled Chocolate cupcakes:
  • Preheat the oven to 175°C. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners. Sift together plain flour, baking powder and salt. Put butter and chocolate in a heatproof bowl over simmering water; stir until melted and smooth. Let cool for later use.
  • Whisk granulated sugar into cooled chocolate mixture. Add eggs, whisk until mixture is smooth. Add flour mixture and stir until well incorporated.
  • Spoon 2 tbsp chocolate batter into each lined cup, followed by 1 tbsp peanut butter filling. Repeat with another tbsp of chocolate batter. Swirl top of cupcake batter with a wooden toothpick to create patterns (So rush that I forgotten to do that myself!!)
  • Bake, rotating half way through, until a cake tester inserted comes out clean, with only a few moist crumbs, about 40 minutes.
  • Transfer to wire rack to cool completely before removing cupcakes. Cupcakes can be stored in air-tight containers up to 3 days at room temperature.
The whole house was filled with chocolate cum peanut heavenly scent when it was baked! Smelling it was already a pleasure for me, hahaha!
The cake turned out moist, with a stronger peanut taste over chocolate. But I guess if you choose to have more chocolate taste over peanut, you can put less filling and add more chocolate into your batter. ;) But I like it this bite and I'm hooked...had to finish the whole cake till I'm satisfied. :P Do try it out when you want a quick chocolate / peanut butter fix...definitely worth it. Just remember not to over bake to ensure it's still moist. :)
BTW, when I picked up my elder daughter from school just a few hours ago...I saw the whole class was crying! Why? Sad that it's last day of school and they won't be seeing each other again! Yeah not your usual..."Yippee, school's out!" thing. ;-P They were actually sad about not coming back to this school again. Oh my... I was almost driven to tears too when I saw my girl sobbing so helplessly and holding her teacher's hand and hugging her friends! But I was happy that she found friendship in these couple of years here. She too was working frantically last night while I was baking away,...she was making farewell cards for all her teachers and some close friends. :-P Anyway, I comforted her and carry her to the car and told her it's alright, separation is part of life and don't be too hard on herself. :) Especially since she's only 6. :-P

Final Thoughts: Sorry if you find that I have not been posting as often as I used to. I assure you that I still bake a lot, just that it's mostly the usual family favorites that I've already posted. Furthermore, now I am in the midst of packing up and ready to move out of Malaysia. So there's always seems to have more urgent stuff to attend to rather then having the leisure to seat down and blog like I would normally do. I even tried a couple new recipes in the past week but still couldn't find the time to post it up. :-P So little time and so much to do!! So bare with me if you will, during this transition stage of mine...I promise I will try to post up more delicious recipes & post for all to see. For now, please take care and have a great weekend!


ReeseKitchen said...

Hey, the peanut butter choc cupcakes is nice. Just tried..:)
Will try it out for my family. Especially my hubby...he's a peanut butter lover..;)

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Thanks Reese! Yeah, I like the peanut butter cupcakes too! But remember to use the peanut butter I gave you, it's not too sweet and very genuine peanut flavor. Enjoy! ;)

Von said...

Wow- your cupcakes are so pretty! They must have taken forever to make!

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Hahaha, thanks Von! Actually it took me an average 3 hours over 3 I guess you can say a total of 9 to 10 hours? But you know I enjoyed the 10 hrs. :)

Ling's Passion said...

I love your cupcakes. They are so sweet looking.

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Thanks Ling's Passion! I am always glad to know there are people that like my bakes. ;) Have a nice day!