Applelicious Cupcakes

Applelicious Cupcakes

Channeling June Cleaver

Channeling June Cleaver

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Lucious Lemon Curd Layer Cake with Lemon Buttercream Frosting

 

 

Lucious Lemon Curd Layer Cake with Lemon Buttercream Frosting

ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups sifted cake flour
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 5 large eggs, separated
  • 3/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 3 tablespoons orange zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 jar Lemon Curd, I like Stonewall Kitchen
  • Lemon Butter Cream Frosting
  • Garnish: Candied Lemon Slices

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Combine first 4 ingredients in bowl of a heavy-duty electric stand mixer. Make a well in center of flour mixture; add oil, egg yolks, and orange juice. Beat at medium-high speed 3 to 4 minutes or until smooth. Stir in zest.
2. Beat egg whites and cream of tartar at medium-high speed until stiff peaks form. Gently fold into flour mixture. Spoon batter into 3 greased and floured 9-inch round cake pans.
3. Bake at 350° for 17 to 20 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks, and cool completely (about 1 hour).
4. Place one cake layer on cake dish; spread with half of lemon curd one inch from cake edge. Top with second cake layer spreading remaining lemon curd one inch from cake edge. You don't want to spread to the end of the cake edge so filling won't spill out from cake as you put cake layer on top. Place third layer on top.
5. Spread Lemon Buttercream Frosting on top and sides of cake.
6. Garnish with Candied Lemon Slices.

Lemon Buttercream Frosting

ingredients
  • 3/4 cup butter, nearly at room temperature, I use Cabot Butter
  • 1 1/2 tsp fresh lemon zest
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp heavy cream
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp lemon extract 
Preparation:
 In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip butter with lemon zest on medium-high speed until very pale and fluffy (it should be nearly white. If using a paddle attachment that doesn't constantly scrape bowl while mixing, then stop mixer occasionally throughout entire mixing process and scrape down bottom and sides of bowl). Mix in 1 cup powdered sugar, then blend in lemon juice, cream, vanilla extract and lemon extract. Add remaining 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, then whip mixture until very fluffy, about 4 - 5 minutes longer.


Candied Lemon Slices:

2 small lemons
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3/4 cup water

Preparation

Cut lemons into 1/8-inch-thick rounds; discard seeds. Stir together sugar, lemon juice, and water in a large skillet over medium heat until sugar is dissolved. Add lemon slices, and simmer gently, keeping slices in a single layer and turning occasionally, 14 to 16 minutes or until slightly translucent and rinds are softened. Remove from heat. Place slices in a single layer in a wax paper-lined jelly-roll pan, using tongs. Cool completely (about 1 hour). Cover and chill 2 hours.  Can be made up to two day ahead.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

One adorable Kate Spade dress three different looks!





Clothes are my passion, my love! I just had to share my favorite dress of this spring/summer season, a fabulously versatile Kate Spade leopard dot tie back dress that I just fell in love with. I get euphoric just thinking about wearing this dress, it’s just perfect for me. The moment I saw this dress on line I got that special rush when I see something that I know I had to have, it had my name all over it. I booked it to my nearest Kate Spade store to see if the dress had made an appearance in their newly arrived  collection. As soon as I entered the store my eyes went right to the dress. Much to my despair only two sizes were left, two and six. I tried on the six which was too big, unusual since I find Kate Spade dresses are cut small. No size four in the store so I gave the two a try and to my surprise a perfect fit. I was delighted that not only did the dress fit, it was just outstanding on me. Quickly I whipped out my credit card securing this beauty for me.


You are probably asking yourself what is so special about the dress that I was so mad for it. First it looked great on me. You have to know your body type and style buying only what looks right for you. I’ve learned this lesson the hard way with many fashion faux pas wasting money on an wonderful outfit that look awful on me. Second I knew that I could do so much with this dress creating different looks taking the dress from work to evening or even to a casual day event. I went home to work some magic creating three perfect ensembles that I just love!

First I knew the dress is just the right base for a sophisticated work or conference outfit with style and polish. I cinched the wast with a thick black patten leather belt, topped it with a short swing style jacket by Milly that I found at Cusp,


L.K. Bennett nude pumps,
added a single Mikimoto strand pearl necklace,


David Yurman pearl drop earnings,

thin silver bracelets and carried the geranium color Kate Spade Cedar Street Jensen handbag.



Drop dead perfect first impression professional work outfit.


Want a fun easy to wear dress for a night out with friends, this dress works so well from office to cocktails. Take off the jacket and belt, change to strappy black sandals. I wore my  Stuart Weitzman Nudistsong High Heel Patent.
Add a bold necklace, my favorite J Crew pearls,
small fun bag. I like Kate Spade's Splash Out Wicker Clam Shell
and you are ready for a night out.

Off to a day function that is a step up from casual but not quite dressy this dress magically dresses down by wearing a classic J. Crew jeans jacket,
chunky Tory Burke cork sandals,
large funky hoop earrings and carrying Kate Spade Belle Place Straw Summer  handbag


for a totally different third look.






One versatile dress you can change into three wonderfully put together outfits! And if you are a shopper like me you have all the accessories needed to complete each ensemble already in your closet or you can splurge on a few that I mentioned. What could be more easy and fun!

Friday, May 1, 2015

Outrageous Triple Chocolate Salted Caramel Nut Cake



 Chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate. If you love chocolate this cake is for you. My inspiration for this outrageous chocolate cake was chocolate salted caramel candy. I have to admit  I seemed to get a little carried away. Warring this cake is very rich eat accordingly! Truly a show stopping cake worth a few calories.
  •  CAKE
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 1 1/2 cups butter, softened at room temperature
  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 5 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoons instant espresso
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup 60% cacao bittersweet chocolate morsels
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate morsels
  • 1/2 cup caramel sauce  
  •  
  • CHOCOLATE GLAZE
  • 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • WHITE CHOCOLATE GLAZE
  • 3/4 cup white chocolate chips
  • 3 tablespoon cream
    3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • TOPPING
  • 1/2 cup caramel sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt 
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans

Preparation

1. Prepare Cake: Preheat oven to 325°. Whisk together flour and next 3 ingredients. Beat 1 1/2 cups butter in a medium bowl at medium-high speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Gradually add granulated sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until yolk disappears. Combine 1 1/4 cups buttermilk and next 2 ingredients. Add flour mixture to egg mixture alternately with buttermilk mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat at low speed after each addition. Fold bittersweet chips into batter. Pour 1/2 batter into a well-greased (with shortening) and floured 12-cup Bundt pan. Place 1/4 cup semisweet chips on batter. Spoon caramel sauce over chips. Top with remaining semisweet chips. Gently pour remaining batter in pan.  Sharply tap pan on counter to remove air bubbles.
2. Bake at 325° for 1 hour and 15 minutes to 1 hour and 25 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack 20 minutes. Remove from pan; cool completely on rack.
3. Prepare Chocolate Glaze: Combine semisweet chocolate morsels, 3 Tbsp. butter, and 1 Tbsp. corn syrup in a microwave-safe glass bowl. Microwave at MEDIUM (50% power) 1 to 1 1/2 minutes or until morsels begin to melt, stirring after 1 minute. Stir until smooth. Stir in 1/2 tsp. vanilla.
4. Prepare White Chocolate Glaze: Melt chocolate and cream in double boiler. Let cool slightly. Whisk in powdered sugar. Drizzle glaze over cake.
5. Pour caramel sauce over cake, sprinkle with sea salt then nuts.

Enjoy!
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