Legalize Frostitution

Day 8, stuck here at the house. We ventured out yesterday to First Hill for a doctor’s appointment. While the freeways were clear of any snow, slush nor ice, the roads to and from the freeway were a far different story. First Hill being, you know, hilly, there were several main roads that were closed, so we went the most circuitous route possible to get to Madison and Minor. And, if you think it would make sense for the city of Seattle to, at the very least, plow the streets leading up to oh, I don’t know, a HOSPITAL, well ho ho ho are you way off-base. At least, I was when I said to the husband, “Surely Madison will be clear of snow.” The ride to the doctor’s was bumpy bumpy bumpy. Baby was not fond of the ride, so far as I can tell. We thankfully have a 4Runner with 4WD that got us to our destination, but boy was I nervous about all of the OTHER cars on the roads, like the lame Toyota Corolla in front of us trying to get to Capitol Hill, or the insane Honda Civic that thought it could bypass a “Street Closed” sign on Boren but then fishtailed and ran into the curb. Some great driving going on.

And, I’m not the only one complaining about the poor job the city has done with clearing the streets.

So, that was our only jaunt of the week (not including a two-mile round trip to UVillage over the weekend). Needless to say, we’re staying home as much as possible. As you might have guessed, I’ve been a little stir crazy. I baked cookies last week, intending to give them to some co-workers. Being as how I never made it back to the office, the work cookies soon became neighbor cookies. I made a batch of chocolate chip and a batch of sugar cut-outs, and frosted them with this lame icing from the BHG cookbook. I wasn’t crazy about the cookie dough, either, so I decided to try again.

Snowman Sugar Cookie

For this batch, which I finished today, I used the Best Rolled Out Sugar Cookies. Seriously, that’s what they call them at I also found a frosting recipe from allrecipes. It is my go-to site for simple recipes and all-american cooking (i.e green bean casserole).

I had quite a bit of fun frosting these. The frosting is way better than what I used from BHG. BHG was basically powdered sugar and milk. Blech. I sent the husband out for food coloring and added it to the new version, made of powdered sugar, milk and butter (the original recipe called for shortening but I declined. I’m not sure what shortening does to frosting that butter doesn’t)

The toppings I got from Williams Sonoma, on sale. I’m hoping we make it to the in-laws tomorrow for Christmas, so I can give these cookies away. Otherwise I am going to come out of this snowstorm one roly-poly cookie-eating chica.

See more cookie pics on my flickr photostream.

BTW, I am not so clever as to have invented the title of this post. I have to give credit to Cupcake Royale.

Speaking of cupcakes, I imagine this frosting would be incredible on a nice chocolate cupcake. Yeah!

Cupcake Mania

Via aloha_pineapple on FlickrCupcakes have been on my mind lately, especially since my trial-run of the Banana Cupcake recipe (hint: if you want to be super-popular at the office, go with chocolate. People look at you funny when you say ‘banana cupcake with amaretto buttercream”).

I watched with fascination this past weekend an episode of “Throwdown with Bobby Flay,” where he went head to head with a cupcake baker/rocker from LA. I was disappointed with the outcome, mainly because sometimes I think Bobby is a boob and I appreciate a good cupcake baker. Especially in HD. The rocker made a moist, decadent Red Velvet cupcake with sky-high cream cheese frosting. I felt cavities forming just watching. I also felt the drool dribbling out of the corner of my mouth as I watched. Mmmmmm …. frosting ….

The other cupcake news to inform you of is this recent article from about the best cupcakes in the country. Sure, they mention the CR. And I’m happy and all, but I would love to try some of these other treats, liks the Fluffer Nutter from  “Cake Fetish” and the Fat Elvis from “Saint Cupcake”. What is that commandment again? Thou shalt not covet another man’s cupcake.

And the Oscar goes to …

Well why would I spoil it for you? Truth be told, the only nominated movie we saw this year was “Michael Clayton” and we watched that on PPV about four days ago. But if you were curious to know what classic Hollywood food we ate to commemorate the evening, it was beef stir fry.

And then there’s dessert. I’ve been meaning to test out the new silicone muffin tins I received for Christmas (if they are made from silicone, they aren’t really tins anymore, now are they). I’ve been carrying around a grocery list for the ingredients of “Lemon Cream Cupcakes” for some time now, though each time I mentioned them to the husband he would look like he was going to throw up. So today I recycled that list and started new … Banana Cupcakes with Amaretto Buttercream. It was the amaretto that made the decision for me. Great excuse to pick up a bottle of my favorite liqueur.

Banana Cupcakes with Amaretto Buttercream

Really great and fun to make. I don’t make frosting very often. And, after seeing the ingredients I combined to make the Amaretto Buttercream I remember why. I had a sugar headache for 20 minutes after finishing my cupcake. But my, does it make a difference. What makes a banana cupcake a cupcake, and not a banana muffin? It’s the frosting, stupid. As the “too cool for school” kids at Cupcake Royale are known to say, Legalize Frostitution!

(banana muffins)
banana muffins

(banana cupcakes!)
banana cupcakes! via flickr

Visit this tasty Web site

Cupcakes Take The Cake features cupcakes from around the world.

Cupcake takes the cake logo

They also list cupcake bakeries around the U.S., including our local cupcake eatery in Seattle, Cupcake Royale.

Now, I am most definitely known to enjoy a cupcake from CR when I’m hanging out in Ballard, however I must admit. The CR folks. They show a little bit of attitude. Not really needing that with my sweet treat. I’m just saying.

Yum. Cupcakes. Considering I received new muffin tins for Christmas as well (not really tins … it is the new silicone baking stuff) … perhaps perfecting the homemade cupcake could very well be my other new year’s resolution.