We missed you this evening at our get-together with the Chin family. With an aura of celebrating relationships felt throughout the afternoon, I dearly missed you.
I was invited to share some baking techniques with Sister Cai and her husband to give them time together and a shared pursuit. I so enjoyed teaching and guiding them through the process of making chocolate cupcakes.
After a successful turnout, we topped the freshly baked cake with dollops of whipped cream. You know I love it when a sweet treat is thrown together in a completely natural way.
What started out as a cupcake-baking lesson turned into a Chinese cookout with our Uncle and Auntie Cai. We grilled meats of all shapes and sizes: lamb, shrimp, and fish skewers, grilled beef steak, and even a delicious rotisserie chicken in the oven!
We made a huge dent in my bucket list today. What fun.
For the past month my oven has experienced literal tidal waves of cupcakes entering and exiting by the dozens. Seriously, for about a week, J, M, & M could expect a fresh cupcake every afternoon awaiting their return from school. Other than spending WAY too much time researching cupcake flavor variations, gaining a quite few extra pounds (eek!), and frustrating my Mother to no end with piles of dirty dishes, I have immensely enjoyed these sugar-filled days of baking.
We are a little s’more-crazy around here, so I couldn’t resist trying the cupcake form of a traditional campfire s’more… The first time around, I piped a fluffy meringue atop chocolate cupcakes. Sadly, however, I couldn’t taste the true “marshmallowy creaminess” famous in s’mores. Hence, a few days later, I tried a completely different frosting made from cream cheese and marshmallow fluff.
At this point, I am still tackling the introductory techniques of cupcakes. I have not reached the level of originality and creativity required for developing new flavors and design aesthetic. For now, I am benefiting from the experience of all the excellent bakers ahead of me… this particular recipe was developed by the very talented Rosie from Sweetapolita. She is such a sweetheart and I am constantly wowed and inspired by her work.
There are actually four parts to these cupcakes. 1.) graham cracker (or digestive cookie for those of us living overseas) crumbled base. 2.) Chocolate cupcake. 3.)Dark chocolate glaze spread directly onto the surface. 4.) Marshmallow frosting piped on top. I find this combination a perfect ratio of each s’more component: cracker, marshmallow, and chocolate bar.
Parts #2 and #4 are found here, and parts #1 and #3 are written below. Graham cracker crust: