Category Archives: cupcakes

St. Patty’s treats


Saint Patrick’s day is upon us again and I wanted to get in a quick post to honor it, and also to reflect on the feasting Shawn and I did last year. This year we won’t be feasting for every meal, but we’ll try to squeeze in a few Irish themed dishes. We started early by having some beans and toast tonight, with some apple sage field roast sausage. I’ll try out some new recipes for tomorrow, but why mess with something that is amazingly delicious as it is?

Now, back in February, I mentioned I had a few knitting projects going and that I might just share one for Saint Patrick’s if I finished in time. Guess what…I did! Even with making a million mistakes and having to undo hours of work, I managed to complete the above pictured fingerless gloves. They’re made with organic cotton yarn (in green of course!) that I love. It’s so easy to work with and softer than any not-so animal friendly wool. If you were so inclined, you could knit these yourself as there is a free pattern available, which I’m always appreciative of. These guys are so comfy and also great for keeping warm on a bike ride without losing your grip.

Part of the reason there won’t be extensive feasting this year, is because I’ve been rather busy baking away. I did manage to get some special St. Patrick’s day cupcakes over to Meet Market, so if you need some Saint Patrick’s day treats you can get your own lucky shamrock vanilla cupcake, or some Peppermint Patty cupcakes or even a special green themed “hostess” cupcake with marshmallow cream filling. Get them before they’re gone though, they’ve been selling out awfully quick.

Hope everyone has a lovely Saint Patrick’s day. Eat something delicious. Don’t forget to wear green (or orange). Try not to drink too much. 🙂

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Homemade for Haiti

This past weekend I participated in the Homemade for Haiti bake sale hosted by Home Ec Shop in Silverlake. We were able to raise an amazing $1,220 for Doctors without Borders.

I cooked up some of my favorite cupcakes and some of my best sellers in hopes that they could get the most money to those in need.

While the bake sale itself wasn’t exclusively vegan, they had a whole table full of vegan goodness (and even soy milk for coffee)! The shop is so cute too and all the bake goods were packaged up to be exponentially adorable. You can see more photos on flickr.

If you want to do something really easy to help with the relief effort in Haiti, there are a ton of vegan bake sales going on across the country.  I’m particularly envious of the NYC vegan bake sale at Mooshoes (which coincidentally uses one of my cupcake photos taken by Studiodrome). There is even a bake sale here in Los Angeles this Sunday.

Also, if you’re in Los Angeles, you can currently get a hold of these cupcakes at Meet Market or at Vegan Bake Sale. Yay!

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Vegan Road Trip: Part 2

Vegan sweets and treats

Though Los Angeles is extremely fortunate to have a number of great vegan restaurants, we are severely lacking in the area of vegan desserts. Though a few places have a few items available, and yeah I know Babycakes is open (but yes I like my gluten and sugar thank you very much), it’s just not the same as what you might find elsewhere. Luckily on our trip we were able to visit two completely vegan bakeries and sample some delicious treats.

Our first stop was Pattycake Bakery in Columbus, Ohio. This adorable storefront was filled with a plethora of home style desserts including cookies, whoopie pies, muffins, cupcakes and more. They have all the stuff you’re always craving. While Shawn and I oogled over the huge selection and tried to decide what to get, the place hustled and bustled with people buying tons of stuff. We ended up getting a whole box ourselves, trying to sample as much as possible, filling it with three different types of cookies, a whoopie pie, and a cupcake. Now I’m a cookie girl and these were some damn good cookies. The whoopie pie was also moist and delicious, wonderfully sweet with just the right amount of creme filling. I wish I had tried one in the other flavors they had to offer. I think if I lived within driving distance of this place I would be there everyday getting cookies. No joke. Everything was high quality without being over the top. Pattycake Bakery was completely delightful.

Also in Columbus, On the Fly, where we got the awesome vegan empanada and chili, had some desserts on display to choose from. Since we knew we were on our way to Pattycake, we didn’t have a chance to try anything, but I have to mention them anyway, because they were so gorgeous. The cupcakes were topped in chocolate ganache as well as vegan buttercream and just looked delightful. They also had jars full of cookies. Did I mention I love cookies? I do.

No trip East would be complete without a stop at the infamous Vegan Treats. While you can get their delicious desserts at almost every vegan and vegetarian restaurant from New York to Pennsylvania, it’s well worth it to make the trip to their storefront in Bethlehem, PA. Here you can get their personal sized french pastries, along with donuts and other specialties. I’m just going to come out and say, if you haven’t had Vegan Treats, you haven’t what is arguably  the best of the best when it comes to vegan bakeries. Having been in business for over ten years and catering to so many places on the east, they really know their stuff. Vegan Treats is so delicious and decadent and amazing I just can’t say enough good stuff about it.

While there, we loaded up on desserts, going for anything with a holiday theme, and some donuts. Are they not the cutest desserts ever? We also had to show our love and get some hoodies to take home once the desserts were gobbled up. The new designs they have are possibly as cute as all the desserts. Luckily, now you can get some of their tee-shirts online (go support vegan businesses!).

Unfortunately, since we traveled over the holidays, we were unable to go to a few sweet stops on the way, including Sticky Fingers Bakery in DC or Lula’s Sweet Apothecary in NY. We did get to make up somewhat for the lack of ice cream at Spiral Diner in Dallas, Texas. They had a small case filled with baked goods, including monster vegan peanut butter cups, but we were ultimately lured in to the sweet call of an ice cream sundae. Shawn picked out the Chocolate Mountain Mudslide, a brownie topped with their signature i-scream, chocolate sauce, nuts and whipped cream. I was going to order the Deathstar Sundae, another brownie topped with i-scream, espresso and whipped cream, but Shawn got the last brownie. Unbelievable! I stole a few bites of his as payback but nuts on ice cream freak me out. The i-scream and brownie were awesome though, and much more than you’d expect from a diner of any kind.

Are you overloaded on sweets yet? Don’t worry, we’re done here for now. Next, we’ll be on our way home!

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Filed under cupcakes, holidays, ice cream, roadtrip, vegan treats

Halloween Cupcakes

You know what’s awesome? Halloween. I love it. I especially love getting to make Halloween treats, decorations and costumes. I love that you can decorate cupcakes and they can look like a five year old made them and they are still amazing. I made these guys for some friends and got a little carried away. Hope they like them. I have a lot of cupcake decoration ideas that I’m hoping I’ll still have time to execute this month. If not, I’m just going to pretend that November is still October. October part two. Is this cool with everyone? I think it’s a fabulous idea.

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Halloween Movie Marathon Massacre

vanilla cupcakes with orange frosting

Live blogging from the 2nd Annual Halloween Movie Marathon Massacre. This event has gotten a little out of control. As of this moment we’ve watched 12 movies straight, starting at around 8 pm last night. It’s now past 6 pm. We’re getting close to 24 hours of Halloween movie madness. So I’m not going to write much because, well, I’m rather sleep deprived and whatever I write will probably sound ridiculous (disclaimer: I have actually slept through part of at least a few movies). Instead I’m just going to show you a few of the treats I made for the event. Above you can see some vanilla cupcakes with orange frosting.

I also made cookies and cream cupcakes and decorated them with crumbled Newman’s O’s. I had intended to put little graham cracker headstones on each but I totally burnt them. They looked even more awesome burnt but were not at all edible.

My favorite treat that I got to make was caramel corn. I used the recipe from The Joy of Vegan Baking. It’s amazing. I can really only make this stuff for special events because I will eat the entire batch.

We also had a veggie hot dog station inspired by The Franken Stand. Sometimes if you can’t get the real thing you just have to make your own. Luckily, they have been at some great events this month, so we get to enjoy them somewhat frequently.

We’re down to five movie watchers, including myself. It’s amazing. The plan is to head to the Cinefamily and catch the double feature of Victims and Don’t Go In the House to finish the extravaganza. I’ll keep you posted.

Movies so far:
Labyrinth
The Brood
I Spit on Your Grave
Poltergeist
Friday the 13th part 4
Sleepaway Camp
Dawn of the Dead (original)
Shaun of the Dead
Lost Boys
Ringu
Necromantic
Suspiria

UPDATE

I finished with:

Victims
Don’t Go in the House

I think that the remaining three watched Close Encounters after that.

So many hours of horror!

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Four years of being vegan

carrot cake cupcake

Happy veganniversary to me! Today celebrates the four year anniversary of me being vegan. I can honestly say that becoming vegan has changed my life significantly for the better and is without a doubt one of the more life altering decisions I’ve made. Though making the switch from being a vegetarian to vegan wasn’t that dramatic in and of itself, the resulting changes in my lifestyle have come to shape who I am. I find so much joy in experimenting in the kitchen and there are few things that calm me more than baking. I have made so many awesome friends in the vegan community through this little blog that really just started out as something to motivate myself.

In the past four years I’ve learned to be proud of my choice to be vegan as the more I learn, the more it is reinforced in my mind that it is undoubtedly the best option. Whereas I used to shy away from conversations with non-vegans on the issue, I’m now happy to point out many of the benefits  of veganism and even happier to tell people about all the really amazing vegan food and restaurants out there.

Every day I try to be a better vegan. This means not only trying to eat a diverse diet (it is even easier now than ever to get vegan junk food) but also being conscious of my choices outside of what I eat. I do the best I can without driving myself crazy. In a world where nearly everything is processed and manufactured it’s not always possible to know every element of the production of an item, but I try my best to be aware.

I’m so glad that I get to be a vegan blogger, a vegan baker, a vegan filmmaker, a vegan cyclist. I’m so happy that I’ve met so many of you and learned so much from your vegan adventures. So I insist, celebrate with me and go eat something damn delicious, because nothing tastes better than being vegan.

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White Russian Cupcakes

Do I really need to describe these? White Russian in a cupcake. I’m just gonna go ahead and give you the recipe. Beware this frosting is deadly.

White Russian Cupcakes

Kahlua batter

½ cup soy milk

½ tsp white vinegar

1 ¼ cup flour

1 Tbsp corn starch

¼ tsp baking soda

¼ tsp baking powder

¼ tsp salt

¼ cup plus 1 Tbsp sugar

3 Tbsp oil

½ tsp vanilla

1 tsp coffee extract

2 Tbsp Kahlua

1 tsp vodka

Cream batter

½ cup soy milk

½ tsp white vinegar

1 cup + 2 Tbsp flour

¼ tsp baking soda

¼ tsp baking powder

¼ tsp salt

¼ cup plus 2 Tbsp sugar

4 Tbsp oil

1 tsp vanilla

1 tsp vodka

White Russian Frosting

1/4 cup Earth Balance

2 Tbsp Kahlua

2 tsp vodka

1 – 1/2 cup powdered sugar

Preheat the oven to 350°. Fill cupcake tray with liners.

The trick with this recipe is to make both batters at the same time. That means mix all your wet ingredients and all your dry ingredients for both batches simultaneously and then combine them both together. That means you should be working with four bowls.

Mix soy milk and vinegar and set aside. Combine all the dry ingredients for both batters in two separate bowls. In two more bowls, combine all wet ingredients adding the soy milk mixture last. Mix the wet and dry for the Kahlua batter until there aren’t an noticeable lumps. Divide between the 12 cups. Then mix wet and dry for the creme mixture and fill the cups the remaining 3/4 full.

Bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool on a rack completely.

For the frosting, beat the Earth Balance until smooth. Add the Kahlua and vodka and beat until fully combined. Add 1 cup of powdered sugar and beat until smooth again. Add more powdered sugar as necessary. A note on this, I used the soy free Earth Balance which is not as dense as the regular stuff so I used 1 1/2 cup powdered sugar, I imagine only 1 cup will be needed though normally. Also, double the recipe if you want to pipe the frosting.

Eat these suckers (but don’t eat too many)!

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