October 16, 2007

Girly High Tea = Nice food and cupcakes!

Once in a while, it's good to stay away from shoppings or chill outs in town and have some mini girly high tea sessions in the comfort of our homes. This not only saves unneccessary spending, saves the hassle to dress and doll up, can engage in longer talks, watch cheaper movies..etc and of course the opportunity to whip up nice, inexpensive food and bakes!

Last Saturday, four of us gathered at xian's house. She had planned some finger food for us...she's good at it..:) had made bento sets for us before; while ling and mei bought some drinks and tibits. As for me, of cos' I would take this opportunity to bake some goodies ;P Mini cupcakes would be perfect, so dainty and beautiful, Hehe..got this idea from CLEO magazine October issue ;)

Another reason for baking cupcakes is because I am also in the search of a good basic vanilla cupcake recipe. I browsed through several recipes and found that basically some of the most common ones are roughly 1 1/2 to 2 cups flour; 1/2 cup milk; 1/2 cup butter; 2 eggs; 1 cup sugar; extracts, baking powder and so on for a 12 - muffin recipe. These are the common proportions that I've seen though some may vary in terms of using self-raising flour or slightly more or less flour.

I searched through several websites, food blogs, and my recipe collections and finally decided on this vanilla cupcakes found at Joy of Baking. Unlike the rest, this recipe uses 3 eggs instead of 2 and 1/4 cup milk, which I guess would make the cake richer. I've tried those previous recipes using 2 eggs and somehow the cake always turned out a bit dry and dense.

I baked them in mini muffin tins which I jus bought. Really like the cute tins and I think cupcakes look cuter in mini size. Moreover mini size can control the amount you eat and you tend to eat lesser. hee.....

The cupcakes puffed up well with a nice golden colour... :) These may appeared medium size but they were mini size only, very cute.

As I was cooling the muffins waiting to be 'doll up' , I decided to try another batch for my mum to bring to her ktv session with the aunties. It was an impromptu decision as she only decided to go on that day. I eagerly told her I'm going to bake for them a batch but she told me to be quick la as she did not want to be late cos' of waiting for my cake. I promised her no worries although i knew it would be quite rushed...:p cos' I was really eager to try another recipe...and to be able to share my bakes with others.

The second recipe which I tried, I would say is a reduced fat version, as it uses only 1/4 cup butter but 1 cup of buttermilk. I am always looking for reduced fat alternatives but I realised that the taste and texture often have to be compromised. I wanted to see how much difference it would make just by substituting for less butter. Indeed, the muffins overall pales in comparison as compared to the previous one. It was less rich and crumbly, less tasty overall. I added some walnuts and chocolate chips as I did not plan to add any frosting. Overall, I would say it's still a good recipe, soft and fluffy and would make a good base for muffins with added nuts or any ingredients. Only thing was I did not like the almond taste, but that boils down to individual preference as my mum told me most of her friends commented that they were nice!! The recipe was from BakingBites - Vanilla buttermilk cupcakes. This is how it turned out.

Yup, so I have tested 2 basic vanilla cupcake recipes. The verdict is I prefer the one from Joy of Baking. After I refrigerated, it tasted just like those Sara Lee Pound cake. It was rich, soft and fluffy. Highly recommended! I will continue to test other recipes, with yogurt and sour cream next time. :)
Okok I think I have side track too much from my main topic. Back to our high tea, I frosted the mini cupcakes with vanilla butter cream, recipe also from Joy of Baking. Tinted some with pink colour, and another mixed with oreo biscuits. Here comes my creation...

Here are some of the food xian prepared.........

This egg/tuna mayo with prawn on cheese crackers is my favourite! I never knew prawns can go so well with egg mayo. It's really a simple finger food, but very nice! Haha maybe it's nothing new to people out there but I've not tried something like this before, so really like it. Shall try this combi for my sandwich next time.

A platter of colouful fruits ..........


sweet-tooth said...

the cupcakes look so good!
haha thanks!
you bake such nice stuff, successfully baking a chiffon cake wouldn't be a problem for you ;D

Aimei said...

Haha although rather afraid of disappointment, but will still try again. ;)