Archive for August, 2010

Strawberry Jalapeno Cupcakes

Also to be known as The Most Painful Cupcakes I have Ever Made, due to the Candied Jalapenos.

This recipe is long, and full of lots of missteps, and I do not guarantee results. I didn’t measure many of the liquid ingredients, so I am very surprised that they turned out :) Also, I am such a dork, and I was so sure that the cupcakes would not turn out, that I did not take pictures of any of them. I might snag a picture from some friends that were at the meetup, if they post any.

Start with making Candied Jalapeno. Keep the entire mixture together. If in the fridge, warm in microwave.

Put in bottom of mixer, and add some Strawberry Jalapeno Jam. Add 4 tbsp of room temperature butter, 1/3 cup vegetable oil,1/2 tsp salt and extracts (I added both vanilla and NATURAL Strawberry Flavor. (Fake Strawberry tastes like fake strawberry. I found that the natural strawberry mixed with real strawberries is acceptable.)

I did not add sugar, because there was 1 cup of sugar in the jalapenos, and 1 1/2 cups in the entire recipe of Strawberry Jalapeno Jam. Which is why the flour ratio is a bit higher than in the book.

Here is where it gets unorthodox. I am using the “Dissolved Sugar” method as mentioned in BakeWise: The Hows and Whys of Successful Baking. Reckless me, I go and change up the recipe without even trying the original. Hence, “Attempted.”

Mix 1 cup of flour, 1/4 cup cornstarch (or use 1 1/4 cup cake flour), and 2 tsp baking powder. Add this to the candied jalapeno liquid mixture in 1/3rd increments. Yes, we are adding flour to liquid. The science basically says that the water is bonded with the sugar, and thus is unavailable for gluten production. Still, don’t go beating this for hours. Mix each installment until just combined.

One at a time, add three egg yolks and then two eggs. the original recipe says to stir in by hand. I used the hand mixer on low speed for the yolks, then stirred in the full eggs.

Whip 1/2 cup heavy cream to medium peaks. Fold into batter.

This made 18 large cupcakes, and 12 small ones.

For Strawberry Jalapeno Cream Cheese Frosting, cream together 8 oz cream cheese, 1 stick of butter, about 1/3rd cup strawberry jalapeno jam, and 3 cups of powdered sugar. frosting will be loose, so plop it onto the cupcakes and let it spread slightly.

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How NOT to make Candied Jalapeno

Eh, it was only 8 oz of Jalapenos.

Jalapenos are not that hot, i can handle it.

Cant find my gloves, it will be fine.

DO NOT DO THIS! Well, actually, you can do all of this, if you wear gloves for the “dice peppers” instruction.

Rinse peppers. Dice peppers. Boil 6 oz of sugar with 3 oz of water. Put diced peppers into sugar syrup. Cook for 20 minutes or so. Cool.

If you do this, you will have candied jalapeno peppers. If you did this without wearing gloves, then you have more in store!

Such as BURNING HANDS FOR FOUR HOURS! Man. It didnt hurt while I was doing it. As I was cleaning up, I noticed a slight tinge. The pain grew in intensity until it was HUMONGOUS!

(This next paragraph is kinda gross. Feel free to skip it.)

I tried soap. I tried oil. I tried (separately) lemon juice, milk, sour cream, canola oil, bleach, baking soda, and ice water. I even tried urine (surprisingly, it hurt while, ahem, being applied, but felt much better afterwards, until my inner germaphobe that doesn’t come out that much started freaking out and I washed my hands. Pain returned.)

The ice water was the most soothing, while my hand was in the water. I think the residual pain I feel might be a bit of frostnip.

What finally worked was Solarcaine. I asked the very nice (and cute) pharmacist at the 24 hour pharmacy if what I had would work, and they suggested this.

I sprayed it on my hands outside, and the PAIN WENT AWAY! It came back, so I sprayed it a few times (I hope that its not possible to overdose on lidocaine, but it never felt tingly numb.)

So, in short, use gloves and do not touch the peppers. But, make the candied jalapenos :)

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Gluten Free

One of the ideas that I have running around my head is experimenting with “alternative cupcakes.” Not to the extent of BabyCakes Vegan Gluten Free low sugar cupcakes, but, specifically, gluten free and how to lower sugar/boost nutrition, and still have the cupcake seem like a cupcake.

I am a pretty dedicated King Arthur Flour baker. I like their dedication to standards and quality, their business model, as well as the baking education that they give, both online and off. I picked up some of their new gluten free baking mix (expensive!) and am looking for good recipes to try.

Also, anyone want to send me 1-2 oz of Xanthum gum? This goes by teaspoonfulls in recipes, yet I can only find 8 oz containers of it. Silly.

Recipes on my list of things to try:
Zahirah did gluten free chocolate peanut butter muffins, which look pretty good, and use honey instead of white sugar.

Something from BabyCakes Cookbook

Anyone have good links for gluten free cakes/cupcakes/pastries?

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Cooking for Two Weeks

In an attempt to get back to the “cooking” side of things (rather than baking), the following is a list of the meals I have planned for the next two weeks. My goal is to take at least one picture of each of them, and post the recipe.

Italian Sausage Spaghetti

Hamburger helper with peas and carrots. Yes, this does say Hamburger Helper Stroganoff. I feel like a failure that I cannot find a stroganoff recipe that I like that tastes as good as these luscious chemicals. Any ideas?

Turkey Cheeseburgers

Tacos with Black Beans

Hashbrown casserole in the crock pot.

Chicken and Rice (diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, garlic, spices) (possibly in the slow cooker)

Chicken Marsala with Mushrooms over Pasta (though I will take pictures and post a better formatted recipe for this.)

Crockpot BBQ Chicken on hamburger rolls

Philly Cheesesteak


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