Friday, November 30, 2012

Baking Fun: Pumpkin Banana Bread

(Don't mind the dog treats--I didn't use them)

When I get stressed, I either clean or bake. Since my house is almost spotless (from keeping it clean for house showings, which is also the cause of my stress), I needed to bake something. I wanted it to be something new. I had a few ripe bananas that were just begging to be used, so I found a recipe for Pumpkin Banana Bread from Averie Cooks. I love pumpkin bread and I love banana bread, so I knew this would be a winning combination.

This was also my first time using yogurt in a bread recipe to make it moister. The bread turned out so moist that I kept thinking it wasn't cooked all the way. That sometimes happens when I use bananas too. Does that happen to anyone else?

I didn't add the browned butter cream cheese frosting, but I can imagine it would make this even more fabulous. I bet this would be a great cupcake recipe too.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Looks Good Enough to Eat

Continuing with my birthday coverage...

My sister gave me the yummiest-looking birthday gift! At first I thought it was a cupcake in a jar, but upon closer inspection I saw that it was from Bodacious: A Unique Bath Boutique. What?!

"Decadent cupcake layers are the perfect two-in-one shower companion. Mango butter, sunflower oil, and crumbled brown sugar exfoliate and nourish while sweet icing softens and repairs." Are you sure I can't eat this?

Bodacious, a one-of-a-kind bath boutique, features soaps, bath fizz, and other pampering products inspired by your favorite treats! It's located in Sandy, Utah.

Check out all of these cupcake...bombs! Not edible, but so cute!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Happy Birthday to Me!

Last Monday was my birthday. As I mentioned last week, my birthday came the day after my Ironman race. My birthday wish was to complete my Ironman. Turns out I was lucky this year and my pre-birthday wish came true. I am officially an Ironman!!

Since my husband had to get back to work, we spent my birthday driving home from Arizona. I was super happy to find this special surprise on our garage as we drove up. My friends are so wonderful!

But that wasn't it. There was also a box of cupcakes from Casey's Cupcakes on my front porch. How spoiled can I be?! I spent the rest of the evening relaxing and sampling each cupcake. Delicious! I can't wait to do an official review of Casey's Cupcakes soon. All in all, it was a great birthday! One I will never forget.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Sprinkles Ice Cream Coming to Orange County!

When I heard Sprinkles Cupcakes was expanding into the cupcake world, my mind almost exploded! I made a trip out to Beverly Hills to taste the magic. It was better than expected!

Today Fast Food Maven is reporting that Sprinkles Ice Cream is opening their second location in Orange County. Well, hallelujah!! Now I won't have to drive out to LA to get some amazing ice cream. The new location will be next door to their Sprinkles Cupcakes location in Corona del Mar. Perfect!

You can read my Sprinkles Ice Cream review here.

Fall Cupcakes are Here! Try these Pecan Pie Cupcakes

Fall is my favorite season, mostly because I love comfort food. Let's get into the season with some Pecan Pie Cupcakes inspired by Love From the Oven. The recipe originally comes from Taste of the South Magazine, but Love From the Oven posted some delicious photos here.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Happy Birthday to an Ironwoman?

Today is my birthday! But more importantly, I'm hoping it's my first full day as an Ironman. Yesterday I competed in my first Ironman race and I hope I completed it (I wrote this two days ago). I have been training for this race for the past 6 months. I've devoted time every single day to making sure I'd be ready for this race. I want nothing more than to finish all 140.6 miles. Let's hope my pre-birthday wish came true! Either way I'll be stuffing my face with lots of cupcakes today.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Cowabunga Dude!

There are two reasons I liked this episode of Cupcake Wars. First, the bakers were husband-wife teams. Second, they were competing to provide cupcakes at an event to celebrate the re-launch of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Yes! One of my favorite cartoons growing up. 

For the first challenge, they had to bake a cupcake using pizza as inspiration. In case you didn't know, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles LOVE pizza. Very appropriate! But my husband would be disappointed with two of the teams because he doesn't believe in Hawaiian pizza. He likes his sweet and savory foods to stay separated. Do you agree with him?

Lancaster Cupcakes (Lancaster, PA)
Kissi Cakes n Sweets (Dublin, OH)
Sugar High (Frankenmuth, MI)
The Sweet Divine (St. Louis, MO)

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Best Friends For Frosting Presents Cupcakes from A to Z

Best Friends For Frosting put together an EXCELLENT post showcasing 26 cupcakes from the best food bloggers. These aren't your standard chocolate or vanilla recipes, all 26 A to Z recipes are for unique and creative cupcakes. Check out the full post on Best Friends For Frosting.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Chicken Pot Pie "Cupcakes"

Let me tell you a little secret: I'm not a great cook. Sadly, my husband agrees too. So when I find a recipe that looks tasty and super easy, I'm in.

Cupcake Crusaders recently led me to a recipe for Chicken Pot Pie Cupcakes. I'm a big chicken pot pie fan, but have never attempted to make one myself because I'm not a great cook. But these looked doable. Plus, they looked like cupcakes, so I had to make them.

Result: easy and delicious! I posted this photo on instagram and got lots of response and requests for the recipe, so here it is. Hope you enjoy as much as we did!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Review: Luna Grill

I love an impromptu cupcake review! My husband and I were recently dining at Luna Grill, a Mediterranean chain that recently opened in Orange County. After ordering our food I noticed they had cupcakes for sale: regular-size red velvets ($3), mini vanilla bean cupcakes ($1.50), and mini chocolate cupcakes ($1.50). How could I pass them up?

I wouldn't expect to find cupcakes at a kabob restaurant, but I sure wasn't complaining. Since I'm adult and can do what I want, I ate my cupcakes before dinner came. Both were delicious! They were standard chocolate and vanilla bean cupcakes, but they were so moist. The cake was perfect and the frosting was tasty. I would definitely order them again. Next time I will try the red velvet too.

P.S. Our dinner was awesome too. I love when chicken is cooked perfectly!

Irvine Spectrum
55 Fortune Drive, Suite 602
Irvine, CA 92618

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Pay $30 to Learn How to Make Butter

I laughed out loud when I saw this product from Williams-Sonoma: a DIY Butter-Making Kit. Have you ever made butter before? Well, it's super easy and involves a container and cream. All you do is put the cream in a covered container and shake.Voila! Butter!

So what exactly is Williams-Sonoma selling you? A container to make the butter in, a step-by-step instruction guide, porcelain butter crocks, and hand-carved teak butter paddles.

Would you buy this product?

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Thanksgiving Recipes and Tutorials from Dollhouse Bake Shoppe

Dollhouse Bake Shoppe has provided the ultimate Thanksgiving recipe round-up. Marshmallow Turkey Pops, Chocolate Caramel Thanksgiving Cupcake Toppers, Indian Corn Cookies, Inside-Out Caramel Apples, and much more! Not only are the recipes provided, there are also tutorials for the baker-challenged (like myself). You can find ALL the info here.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Cupcake Camp OC 2012 Postponed

According to their Facebook page, Cupcake Camp OC is on hold. Originally it was scheduled for December 1, 2012. No reason was given for the postponement, but I'm personally happy for the change because I wasn't going to be able to attend on that date. The only other detail given is that it will possibly happen in the spring. I will keep you posted.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Support Your Party with Cupcakes

(provided by Cinch PR)

I'll take any excuse to eat cupcakes, even the election. SusieCakes is cashing in on the big event by offering special election-themed sweets. You can support your Republican or Democrat party by buying red, white & blue donkey and elephant cookies, as well as Romney and Obama themed cupcakes. You can pre-order for pick-up on Election Day, November 6, or you can buy in-store (limited quantities) on that same day.  


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