Monday, October 25, 2010

Butternut Squash Cupcakes

Even though I am allergic to the cold, I love this season for two reasons: boots of course!, and squash season. I love the cinnamon-y smell in the air and and I love the pumpkin pie, pumpkin lattes and smoothies, squash soup..ahh yes hello fall.

Anyhow, so since I love butternut, I asked myself why I'd never tried to make butternut squash cupcakes. I have had these on my mind now for about 3 weeks and finally got around to making them earlier tonight. The reason it took so long was because I could not find canned butternut puree anywhere! I have seen it the past two years at Trader Joe's and was so bummed to find out that they stopped carrying it this season. I searched a few more stores around and no luck. So finally I decided to just buy some butternut squash and puree it myself. I'll admit, I was just being lazy. :/

here is a pic of the butternut squash I picked up from the farmers market:
mmm. butternut squash is so delish...can't wait to make soup out of the other one!


I cut the butternut squash in half and put a few slices of butter and a few dashes of brown sugar on it. I put it on broil for a bit, but after I left it cool and sampled it I found it was definitely not cooked yet. So I scooped it out threw on a little more butter and brown sugar let it cook for a bit longer. I added a little water to the mix and pureed it until smooth. I sampled it and then I couldn't stop.

And tah dah here it is!

The cupcakes turned out nice and moist and had a nice brown color to them...I love how you can see the spices in the cake! I of course tested one sans frosting and it was good. It was not quite a muffin but you could definitely eat these guys plain without frosting. Next time I make this (prob for halloween and thanksgiving!) I am going to cut down on the sugar I used. It was slightly too sweet for my liking and probably due to the fact that I generously sprinkled some on the squash. I wanted to frost these little guys with marshmallow frosting but was too tired to whip some up so I frosted with cream cheese frosting and we will see what the panel thinks tomorrow! ;)

thanks for reading :)



Caramel Apple Cupcakes

Last week my grandma called me to pick up some fruits and vefgies from their abundant garden. I had my pick at beautiful purple eggplants, the last of the tomoatoes, and thefirst of teh persimmons. Ahh, I love it! While back there my grandparents picked a big bg of apples for me. Adorable, teeny gala apples. But a whole bag? What to do with all those apples!? Then came the idea...caramel apple cupcakes.

I wanted to make them for my "birthday/welcome to our new house" shindig which approached way faster than I thought so I borrowed a recipe from the always creative blogger: Chocklity. Cheryl has been an inspiration to me in thinking of and creating things into cupcakes. She is great so be sure to check her out if you haven't already!

So here it is...

Caramel Apple Cupcakes by Chocklity:

Pretty eh? ;)

So, as you can see from the picture above, the apples from my grandparents garden are very teeny. My cupcakes turned out a little dry, and I believe it was because there wasn't much juice left in those apples. They turned out to be more of a caramel apple muffin, but still yummy. :) Next time I use them I plan to incorporate larger apples and use apple sauce in place of half the sugar.

The caramel I used was not from scratch. :/ I just didnt have time okay! I was trying to prep the house and make sure the place was spotless to impress my family! hehe. So I had Jon pick up some caramel squares while out at the store. If I had more time, and when I make these again I plan to make caramel and channel my inner Martha. I used the recipe on the back of the bag. It was just melting the caramels and adding some heavy cream to it.

I did have extra caramel so I decided to dip a few of the left over apples in there! :) And why yes, that is a handle from a plastic fork I am using as a handle!

Oh btw, I was on a manhunt looking for canned butternut squash and after a week and a half of looking, I gave up. I picked up 3 butternut squashes from the farmers market this morn and plan to experiment tomorrow! :) Yay! And I'll have plenty of butternut to make yummy fave. hooray!

Thanks for reading everyone. :) Happy fall/boot wearing season!