Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Back to the Bakery

It's been far too long since I tried to bake something new. I've been such a sloth lately that the idea of making precise measurements and spooning batter and waiting for shit to rise or fluff or cool just made me want to take a nap.

But, inspiration came today like it always does--on a blind wave of impulse screaming stop everything and do this now! Don't even check to see if you have all the ingredients! And then, in good old Audge-Podge fashion, I blew off everything I was supposed to do (laundry, errands, revisions) and made my way to the kitchen for... Nutella Cupcakes.

come to me, hazelnut spread.

Nutella cupcakes! I love Nutella! I love cupcakes! How thrilling! Exclamation point!

I couldn't find a recipe online that I liked, so I figured I'd wing it--something I'm not prone to do, as the last time I just "winged" something in the baking department, I ended up with dish soap flavored cookies (Pro-tip: baking soda and baking powder are two distinctly different ingredients). I figured I was safe this time, because adding Nutella to anything just ramps up any existing awesomitty (thank you, MCubed) by about 900%. So really there was nothing that could go wrong. I just took my favorite cupcake mix from Back in the Day Bakery and added the Nutella after I was done mixing everything together.

how does it look so gross, but taste so delicious?

I totally didn't pay attention when I was filling up the cupcakes.
Mostly because I was eating the batter.

The second batch came up (relatively) more level


The end result is incredible. The Frosting didn't turn out as thick as I wanted because it was a rush job. Like, half way through baking the cupcakes I got really sick and tired of making the batter (or maybe just sick. That batter is addictive and I don't know how to say no to myself). And as feared, I wasn't looking forward to spooning out dough and refilling cupcake cups and waiting forever for them to bake and cool. (I run out of motivation at the speed of light these days.) So when I remembered I had to make frosting, I basically had the reaction of a kid finding out that instead of getting to make and eat frosting, he was going to the dentist to have a tooth pulled. I was no longer thrilled.

What resulted was a comedy of frosting errors. I microwaved the butter instead of letting it get to room temp, so it didn't cream the way it should have. Then I just threw in whatever powdered sugar I had left over (see above, where I didn't make sure I had everything I needed first), so it was a bit on the sugary/kinda not solid side. But, that could have been because I added Nutella to the frosting. Whatever. It was still all kinds of amazing. And then I was too impatient to wait for the frosting to firm in the fridge or let the cupcakes cool all the way, so the cupcakes have a melted look to them. Once again, oh well. I figure, aesthetics aren't top priority when you're in first stage experimentation.

Analysis: Light, fluffy hazelnut cupcakes with a light, sugary nutella frosting? A+, triumph for mankind.

Side note: at the same time that I was baking, my mom was making carbonara. After she handed me a piece of bacon, I got to thinking "how would bacon and this cupcake batter taste?" (this is natural thought progression for American Fat Kids).

taste the freedom. Then make an instagram of it.

Turns out, bacon and nutella is a lesser known perfect combination of sweet and savory. Hell yeah!

And I, noticing that I had a little bit of batter left over, asked mom to fry up some more bacon. Which she did. And I cut it up and threw it in the batter, and made Bacon Nutella cupcakes. This to me seemed like the ultimate fat kid cupcake move. Like, after it was done baking, I expected to open the oven door and have AMERICA just burst out, arms full of machine guns and sparklers, racing around the kitchen in a Red White and Blue unitard.

But, the jury is still out. It was more like, I opened the door and a Bob Evans restaurant farted on me. Without the frosting, they just taste a bit like sweeter breakfast biscuits. I have to make some serious adjustments next time so that the hazelnut isn't overpowered by the bacon, and so the bacon doesn't dry out the cupcakes. Or maybe the frosting will kick it up a notch. We'll just have to see.

And so ends my triumphant return to bakin' (bacon?). And daaaamn, if I'm not full of tired and cupcakes and carbonara.

Roll me to my bed, sleepy town man.


Chris Berry said...

Food of the Gods!

Kim said...

Dad is in serious love with both flavors of cupcakes!!!!

Katherine Goff said...

Tears of joy stream down my face. GIVE ME A CUPCAKE.

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