A few weeks back leading up to the BEA Expo I stumbled on a new feature from HuffPost Books in association with Book Expo America's blog, Book Bliss, called Have Your (Cup)cake And Read It, Too. We thought it was so awesome that we decided we wanted to do something like that too.
And then magical things happened and Bookish Bakes was born. (Or rather Andi our resident graphics artist made something awesome happen with her magically talented fingers.) Bookish Bakes will be any food, dessert, or drink we come up with based on a book we've read or are currently reading.
Our first venture into Bookish Bakes was done by my sister, Nicole, and I after reading Evermore by Alyson Noël. Since Damen is forever giving Ever read tulips and he's always drinking that red elixer we figured what better cupcake to make then a tulip cupcake with a nice red gooey center?
The resulting four hour baking extravaganza was definitely interesting. Below are the recipes we used and tweeked a bit, along with the decoration process. If you're making everything from scratch like we did, set aside a few hours, oh and don't eat all your ingredients like some people who shall remain nameless...
The Perfect Vanilla Cupcake Recipe
Servings: 15 Cupcakes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 12-14 minutes
Total Time: 22-24 minutes
1¼ cups cake flour
1¼ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
2 large eggs
¾ cup sugar
1½ tsp pure vanilla extract
½ cup vegetable oil
½ cup buttermilk
Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a cupcake/muffin pan with cupcake liners.
1. In a medium bowl, whisk together 1¼ cups cake flour, 1¼ tsp baking powder, ½ tsp baking soda and ½ tsp salt. Set flour mix aside.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat 2 eggs with the whisk attachment on medium speed (15-20 seconds).
3. Add ¾ cup sugar and continue to beat on medium speed (30 seconds).
4. Add vanilla and oil and beat on medium speed (1 minute)
5. Reduce mixer speed to medium/low and slowly add about half of the flour mixture. Add half of the buttermilk, then the rest of the flour mix and the rest of the milk. Beat until just combined and smooth, scraping down the sides of the mixing bowl. The batter should be thin.
6. Pour batter into a lined muffin pan. Fill to about ½ full.
7. Bake for 12 -14 minutes at 350°F. Let them cool in the pan for a couple minutes, then remove.
Once you've let the cupcakes cool off you're going to need to core them. Nicole and I used a plastic knife made a circle in the middle of the cupcake and then dug out the inside. You need to make room for the filling.
Strawberry Filling Recipe
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 4-5 minutes
Total Time: 44-45 minutes
32 ounces of fresh strawberries 1/4 cup sugar 1 lemon, juiced 3 tablespoons cornstarch Pinch of salt
1. Prepare strawberries by rinsing, draining, removing caps and cutting into small pieces.
2. Place in a large bowl. Add sugar. Stir and allow to sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes.
3. Strain the juice from the strawberries into a one-cup measure. Add enough water to make one cup of liquid.
4. In a small saucepan, combine the strawberry liquid, lemon juice, cornstarch and salt.
5. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until the mixture boils and becomes thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
7. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Fill the cupcakes with the strawberry mixture and add icing.
We used Martha Stewart's Vanilla Buttercream recipe (thought we only used 4 cups of powdered sugar instead of 6-8)
I think the longest part of making the cupcakes for us was the decorating. We followed this awesome tutorial from Cake Journal on how to make Tulips
And there you have it. Vanilla Strawberry Infused Cupcakes!
For the Chocolate version of the cupcake recipe go here. (Note we used milk instead of water and we did not use vinegar.)