Sunday, June 13, 2010

Notes from the Field: Summer Hands and Feet.

Hello there.  

It's been awhile, huh.

In the weeks since we last talked, 
these tired feet have traveled miles

To mostly good places, 
like fields and woods, various city streets, 
and lots of sand.  

But finally this weekend, 
they walked back into the kitchen,
and let the hands take over again.  

And they said, "Let's take it nice and easy, ok??"

And so, the hands did.  

With good old American double vanilla cupcakes. 
The hands will try hard to keep up with 
the feet as they roam this summer.

After all, that's what summer feet do.

"The Good Americano"

(Makes approximately 24 cupcakes, adapted from Amy Sedaris)
1 ½ sticks of unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp of pure vanilla
1/2 vanilla bean, seeds scraped
½ tsp of salt
2 ½ teaspoons of baking powder
2 ½ cups of flour
1 ¼ cups of milk

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 3 minutes.
3. Add eggs, one at a time, followed by vanillas (extract and seeds).
4. Add in baking powder and salt.
5. Mix in the flour and milk in three parts, alternating, and ending with flour.
6.  Bake for 20-22 minutes or until the tops spring back to touch. Remove from tray and let cool completely before frosting.

Vanilla Buttercream

2 sticks butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 vanilla bean, seeds scraped
1/4 cup milk
4-6 cups confectioner's (icing) sugar

1. In the bowl of an electric mixer, or by hand, beat the butter until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Mix in the vanilla.
2. Add 1 cup confectioner’s sugar and mix until combined, mix in 1/8 cup milk.
3. Mix in remaining cups of confectioner’s sugar, adding more milk depending on consistency and preference.
4. Frost cupcakes, and sprinkle jimmies on top.

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