Saturday, November 19, 2011

Birthday Baking

On Monday Sydney will be 4 years old!  This is the first year she has had specific requests for what she would like served at her party so we have had a fun time doing some experimenting in the kitchen.

Strawberry Cupcakes:  I used a Pamela's Products Vanilla cake mix and followed the directions for a light fluffy cake (4 eggs) and added 2Tbs of Strawberry flavored Jell-O.  I had to add 5 minutes on to the cooking time and the tops split a little bit but hey... that's what frosting is for!
Frosting Recipe

1/2 cup frozen strawberries thawed and pureed.
1 cup (2 sticks) butter - firm and slightly cold
Pinch of coarse salt
3 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
1/2 tsp Vanilla extract

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat together butter and salt on medium speed until light and fluffy.  Reduce mixer speed and slowly add confectioner's sugar, beat until well combined.  Add vanilla and 3 tablespoons strawberry puree (save any remaining puree for another use), mix until just blended.  Do not over mix or frosting will incorporate too much air.  Frosting consistency should be dense and creamy, like ice cream.

I am very pleased with the way these turned out.  Sydney's response was "Oh Mom!  These are scrumptious!".  Pretty high praise from an ALMOST 4 year old.

Our other experiment was using a box of Gluten Free Pantry's muffin mix to make a savory pizza muffins.  We mixed in cheese and pepperoni and added 3 minutes to the baking time.  They're pretty darn good.  The plan is to serve them with pizza sauce to dip them in at the party.  I'm looking forward to seeing what the short peoples reactions are.  Who doesn't love messy food?

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