Happy Saturday, my sweet friends! I hope your weekend is joyous and sparkly. :o)
I have a couple of special treats to share with you today! I'm excited to share some love via the incredible I Feel the Love project, created by the sweet and talented Madison at Funky Cards. Every month she shares the story of a person or family in need of some extra love and blessings... and we all have the marvelous opportunity to participate by making cards to bring them a smile. :o) I can't think of a better reason to craft. This month we're celebrating Ethan's 2nd birthday! He was diagnosed with a rare liver disease when he was 2 months old and has since had a liver transplant and gone through far more than I can even imagine. Thankfully he is on his way to the childhood he deserves... and it's truly a blessing to be able to share in his birthday celebration in this small way. :o) I hope you'll join us!
"TONS of birthday love rolling your way!"
Admittedly, I had a terrible time photographing this due to overcast skies and a fierce wind. All that aside, this is the fun birthday card I made for Ethan! His name is spelled out on peanuts, which are dancing and hopping down the twine tightrope. I used a waffle-design paper to mimic a peanut shell. Our sweet elephant is anxious to celebrate with Ethan, so he's rolling along on a sparkly ball to pick up the pace. He's ready for the festivities, with two cupcakes in honor of his second birthday and a few ultra-glittery balloons. The balloons are coated with Glossy Accents for a hard, shiny epoxy finish. I used three shades of twine to coordinate with the balloons and added some to his cute little tail. You know why the heart balloon is first, right? Because this card, like his recovery, is guided by love. I used Sunshiney font for the sentiment because it just seemed appropriate for him. :o) For added texture, I embossed the main mat, both frostings, and the dark part of the elephant's ears. I hope this brings a smile to Ethan and all of his wonderful loved ones. :o)
* Cooking With Cricut~ Incorporate a cake, cupcake, or teddy bear!
Today isn't a regular Sweet Saturday. Rather, it is a Special Edition. You know what's hard? When bloggy friends are hurting. Such is the case right now for some very kind crafters. One of them has become so special to me and our wonderful friendship has turned into something spectacular. Knowing she is heartbroken, so far away, leaves me feeling beyond helpless. Prayers transcend boundaries, but we naturally like to DO something for our loved ones when they're going through tough times. She is a huge fan of Sweet Saturday, so I scrapped my original plan yesterday and raced to the grocery store to get ingredients to make her a special dessert. Although I can't deliver them to her in person with a hug since she is 1,858 miles away... I still made them for her as a small gesture to remind her she is in my heart. This Sweet Saturday is for her.
When a friend is hurting, sometimes you just can't decide what heart-soothing treat to bake. Cake? Cupcakes? Cookies? When everything seems right and you just can't decide which is BEST... this fantastic cupcake is the answer. For you, my sweet friend: Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes!
A brown sugar-chocolate chip cupcake, filled with a chunk of eggless cookie dough, and topped with cookie dough buttercream. Do I really need to tell you how amazing these taste? They are magical and are pretty much the dessert equivalent of a hug. Due to time constraints, I wasn't able to decorate the top with a teeny tiny version of my favorite chocolate chip cookies. That is such a sweet addition, so I'm disappointed I couldn't include them. They're still jam-packed with love, though. :o) Even if you make them without the filling, they are STILL beyond words. (And no, I will never try to figure out just how bad these are for you. Moderation and exercise make it okay.) ;) Every single person who I have made these for has fallen in love with them.
These are a special treat and if you're a cookie dough lover, you absolutely must try them! The frosting... oh my. The frosting. I told you a few months ago that I'm not a fan of buttercream frostings. This is the exception. It tastes exactly like cookie dough! It's so marvelous that I refrigerated the extra and will find some use for it. A mini cake? More cupcakes? Breakfast?
Note: This is a bit time consuming, but it is all easy and very enjoyable. This is a great recipe to bake over two days, if possible. Should it be a last minute decision, it's still worth the extended time in the kitchen... I do hope you'll give these a whirl. The recipe as written makes a ton, so you'll have lots to share! :o)
Note Two: This frosting is *supposed* to be a tad bit granular, so do not be alarmed. It's not grainy like the brown sugar wasn't fully incorporated... just a little granular, mimicking cookie dough.
Thank you for visiting me today! I wish you the sparkliest of weekends. :o)
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes
Yield: 24-30 cupcakes
For the cupcakes:
3 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
1½ cups light brown sugar, packed
4 large eggs
2⅔ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips (semisweet or bittersweet)
For the filling:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
6 tablespoons light brown sugar, packed
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
7 ounces sweetened condensed milk
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ cup mini semisweet chocolate chips
For the frosting:
3 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
¾ cup light brown sugar, packed
3½ cups confectioners' sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons milk
2½ teaspoons vanilla extract
Tiny chocolate chip cookies
Mini chocolate chips
To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350º F. Line two cupcake pans with paper liners (24 total).
Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk together to blend. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and brown sugar. Beat together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Mix in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
Add the dry ingredients to the mixer bowl on low speed, alternating with the milk, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Mix each addition just until incorporated. Blend in the vanilla. Fold in the chocolate chips with a spatula.
Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cupcake liners. Bake for 18-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the cookie dough filling, combine the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl and cream on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the flour, sweetened condensed milk, and vanilla until incorporated and smooth. Stir in the chocolate chips. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until the mixture has firmed up a bit, approximately an hour.
To fill the cupcakes, cut a cone-shaped portion out of the center of each cupcake. Fill each hole with a chunk of the chilled cookie dough mixture. Cover with the very top of the cut-out cones, if desired.
To make the frosting, beat together the butter and brown sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until creamy. Mix in the confectioners' sugar until smooth. Beat in the flour and salt. Mix in the milk and vanilla extract until smooth and well blended.
Frost the filled cupcakes as desired, sprinkling with mini chocolate chips and topping with mini chocolate chip cookies for decoration.
Source: Annie's Eats
Key Recipe Components (for card):
* Cricut cartridges: Create a Critter, Elegant, Edges, Simply Charmed
* Cuttlebug embossing folders: D'vine Swirls, Polka Dots, Swiss Dots
* Spellbinders Nestabilities: Labels Four
* Paper: Core'dinations, DCWV, Papertrey Ink
* Twine: Sew Easy (blue lagoon, limeade, lollipop)
* Ribbon: Target dollar bin
* Miscellaneous: Glossy Accents, Martha Stewart glitter, Stickles