I’ve never celebrated a full birthday week before, but this year is a little different. Anyway, it isn’t just my birthday this week. D.’s birthday is this week as well. We are having a joint birthday party this Friday, but as I stare squarely into the eyes of 35another year, I thought I’d need a little time to warm up before the party. And so I welcome you to birthday week…
First, here is a quick recap of Day 1:
Remember the chocolate festival I told you about? Well, it was yesterday and I went with a friend of mine. And so did about 5 million other people. It was crowded… like a mosh pit… as in no personal space, but it was all in the name of chocolate and I’m not talking Hershey’s. My plan was to be a good blogger and take lots of pictures and make some notes so that I could truly report back about the chocolatiers and chocolates that were there. But. Did I mention it was crowded? I kind of go into survival mode when presented with a sea of bodies. So my plan went out the window and I moved onto plan B which was: 1. survive the crowd and 2. taste chocolate!
Some of my favorites included a very nice warm ginger from Neo Cocoa, a lemon-lavender truffle and a Chinese five spice truffle from ??? (I had a hard time focusing on details like the names of the vendors). And surprisingly good… chocolate covered bacon! served with a maple ice cream. I felt drunk by the time I left… drunk from chocolate?!
Now, moving on to today: Day 2 of birthday week. But how does one follow a gourmet chocolate festival you ask? Behold…
Joy the Baker posted a picture and a link for a beautiful strawberry cake yesterday and it was all I could do not to go straight to the store to pick up the ingredients. But yesterday I had a belly ache from all of the chocolate I ate so in the end, I obeyed my stomach and did not bake. Today however, I could resist no longer. I stopped at the store on the way home and made myself eat dinner before I started baking.
I used this recipe from Sweets via Joy the Baker. The recipe is for a layer cake, but I adjusted the baking time for cupcakes to 20 minutes. It made 22 pink cupcakes. Pink makes me happy :)
I have eaten 3 cupcakes tonight, the first 2 in the name of quality control (1 without frosting, 1 with) and 1 because… they are good. Thank you Joy!
For the frosting I used my mom’s recipe for cream cheese frosting, and then colored some coconut with a couple of drops of red food coloring for decoration.
1. In a medium bowl, beat butter and cream cheese until smooth.
2. Add vanilla and powdered sugar, beat until everything is smooth and spreadable (you can add more powdered sugar if you want a thicker frosting).
3. (optional) Mom liked to add chopped pecans to her icing for most cakes (red velvet, carrot, pound… and while pecans are always good in this frosting, I thought there was enough going on between the strawberries and coconut on these cupcakes so skipped it).