Mini S’mores Cupcakes

Mini s’mores cupcakes. They taste just like the real thing, but with more marshmallow and chocolate.

These baby cupcakes have a sweet graham cracker bottom crust.

The cake is chocolate with graham cracker pieces and more graham cracker crumble on top.

The topping is marshmallow frosting, which I then gleefully attacked with a blowtorch.

So adorable and so easy to eat. Everyone had a few because they’re so hard to resist! My favorite thing about these cupcakes is that they don’t have to be perfect. The marshmallow frosting droops a little and sometimes they’re torched unevenly, but I think that just adds to their charm.

Don’t you agree?

Yummy Mousse/Chocolate/Cheesecake/Raspberry Thing

I don’t really have a name for this fabulous dessert, so I’ll just explain what’s in it, layer by later.

At the bottom, I cut out a ring of flourless chocolate cake.

Above the chocolate cake layer is a tin but decadent layer of dark chocolate ganache.

The pink layer is a tart raspberry mousse, made with raspberry and whipped cream. That was my favorite and I used the leftovers to fill a cake. So tasty and it helped lighten up this super-rich dessert quite a bit.

The chocolate layer in the middle is a mixture of mini chocolate chips and chocolate ganache. This added some nice texture with a crunch from the chips.

The light layer almost at the top is vanilla bean cheesecake. Deliciously perfect.

It’s all drenched in gooey chocolate ganache.

And drizzled with homemade raspberry sauce.

I was happy with how all the elements went together nicely. Even though this was a very rich dessert, most of us completely polished off out plates! Next I have to try this with a layer of ice cream…

Chocolate Macarons 2-Ways AND a Macaron Cake

I went on a macaroon-making binge. I made about 70 for an order. Then made more for a cake. Then made more for a party. I can’t even tell you have many egg yolks I had in my fridge, but it was so worth it. Wanna see?
These macarons are filled with a rich chocolate ganache – my favorite!

I experimented with a few recipes. These puffy macarons were made with David Lebowitz’s recipe, found here. They were tasty, reliable, and pretty easy to make, but I wanted a more shiny, classic-looking macaron.

Then I put the macarons on a cake. Why? Because I can.

By the way, this is a double chocolate cake filled with chocolate ganache and fresh raspberries, covered in more dark chocolate ganache.  You can stop drooling now.

 Yes, the cake is displayed on an upside down cookie sheet. I’m a college student, don’t judge. The macaron recipe, by the way, is from here. The were pretty and yummy, but kinda finicky and I’m not totally in love with this recipe yet. I’ll keep searching.

And another batch of chocolate macarons, David Lebowitz’s recipe again. There’s something to be said for consistency!

 These little gems were filled with a marshmallow fluff/chocolate ganache swirl.

 And then they were rolled in graham cracker crumbs.

Yes, s’mores macarons! Chocolate shells, fluff/ganache filling, and graham cracker crumbs. The only thing that would have made them better is to make the marshmallow filling from scratch and attack it with a blowtorch before sandwiching them to give it that campfire taste. These kept in the fridge for well over a week and they were so yummy. Very messy because the filling oozed all over until they had some fridge time to set, but it was worth it.

You’ll definitely want to be licking the spoon for these. Want to know my favorite thing about macarons?

They’re so easy to eat!

Mini chocolate cupcakes with mint hershey kisses baked into each one

Mini Mint Cupcakes

At the supermarket around the holidays, this bag of Mint Truffle Hershey’s Kisses just jumped into my cart. When I got home, I decided to make cupcakes with them to keep myself from eating them all.

I made a regular chocolate cake recipe and filled mini cupcake lines with the batter.

The kisses were plopped on top and pressed ever so slightly.

And I just baked them normally. The cupcake puffed up around them beautifully.

Using a regular (and delicious) chocolate buttercream, I piped spikes on top and asked my sister to toss a few green jimmies and some white nonpareils on to make them even cuter.

Don’t you love the carriers?

Each box was only about a dollar (and they’re reusable!) and it did an excellent job protecting the cupcakes while I was on route to the delivery site. In fact, these pictures were taken after a bumpy car ride and even the peaks still look beautiful.

Happy Birthday Michelle!

This weekend, I have the flu. This weekend, it is also my dear friend and suite-mate’s birthday. What does this mean?

It means I call my doctor to confirm that flu can’t be transmitted via baked goods, text some other friends for help, and start baking! Obviously, the birthday girl simply had to have a cake.

We ended up with this. It was 4 layers of chocolate cake. Between each layer is a delicious glob of chocolate ganache and fresh raspberries. It’s all covered in rich chocolate frosting. And it’s completely dairy-free!

I had great plans for this cake. It was going to be beautifully piped with fancy letters and designs.

Maybe with a touch of glitter on top. Ultimately, the designs were made using a little spatula.

I got a teensy bit too excited by the glitter.

And when you’re baking in a dorm, sometimes you have to use paper plates, even for special occasions.

But you know what?

This cake was delicious. The birthday girl enjoyed it and it was gobbled up in no time. What you see here is a very well-loved cake. And that’s what matters.

We invited people over for a “surprise” party that evening, which, for a number of reasons, turned out to not be such a big surprise after all.

But we decorated the apartment nicely.

We asked the guests to come in pajamas.

We decorated cookies.

Many cookies.

We made a mess. 

I took a couple pictures, but mostly we just ate.

Nothing that day went according to plan, but I think it was perfect.

We love you Michelle. Happy birthday!