Friday, June 19, 2009

With a Cherry on Top

There's some crucial information you need to know about me before hearing about the cupcakes I baked yesterday:

First of all, I love "fake" food. Love probably does not even begin to describe how much I enjoy it. The one food I could eat for every meal, every single day, for the rest of my life is Kraft macaroni & cheese. Kraft probably would have sponsored me as a young child if they knew how much mac & cheese I would go on to consume. Despite this, when I bake, I use only "real" ingredients and the highest quality of them I can find.

Second, in line with my first point, maraschino cherries are my favorite fruit. In fact, there was a time in my life where they were the only "fruit" I would eat. Probably one of the things that made me most sad about growing up was losing the ability to order Shirley Temples at restaurants without looking ridiculous. Not that that's stopped me from doing so; I usually just blush the color of the drink when ordering them.

Chopped maraschino cherries for batter

Third, illustrations of cupcakes with cherries are a personal pet peeve of mine. When I was commissioning my logo, one of my few criteria was that the image of the cupcake did not have a cherry on it. Realistically, how often do you see cupcakes with a cherry on them?

After racking my brain and the internet for a new cupcake flavor to bring to work, I settled on cherry vanilla. Almost all the recipes I found had real cherries in them, and I did contemplate using them, but I knew I'd be happier with maraschino cherries (although I did fear my coworkers would shun these cupcakes). I had also brought back some vanilla bean paste from a vineyard I went to in New Zealand, and was excited to try that out in the frosting. Unable to find a recipe I thought would work, I just put together one of my own.
After work, I picked up two different types of maraschino cherries - with stems and without. The cutting of the cherries left my fingertips stained deep red from the food dye. This reminded me of how my childhood best friend was not allowed to eat certain red dyes because her mother forbade her. Maraschino cherries were on that family's list of forbidden foods. After chopping all the cherries, I tossed them in to the batter and added a few drops of red dye for good measure, just to be safe. I didn't want any repeat grey cupcakes (see this post if you don't know what I'm talking about).

Cupcake briefcase I take to work
I know I said the other day that cookie dough is my favorite, but it has been replaced (or at least tied) with these cupcakes. I ate an embarrassing amount of them. Really, embarrassing. I'm usually pretty uninterested in the cupcakes I bake because once I'm done with all the effort, I'm too "over" them to eat them. These cupcakes also survived the monsoon we are having in NYC (and I didn't have an umbrella this morning) and made it into work, relatively dry. They definitely were appreciated though...they unanimously got my coworkers' seal of approval.


shawnpix said...

t you might enjoy this, if you haven't already seen it:

It's for Redbull Cupcakes!

Blog Design by Delicious Design Studio