Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Sweet Pockets Cupcakes (Atlanta)

As so often happens while coasting through the cupcake universe, I came across a great web site:  Sweet Pockets Cupcakes in Atlanta, GA.  

I am posting the link to their "weddings" photo slideshow...beautiful!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Recipe of the Week - Cherry Bomb Cupcakes with Meringue Frosting (gluten-free)

At the IFBC conference this past weekend, I met quite a few bloggers who specialized in gluten-free topics.  This recipe is for those who love cupcakes and need to eat gluten-free. 

Note:  I am currently adapting this recipe to work at high altitude (recipe by Cupcake Bakeshop by Chockylit).

Sunday, August 29, 2010

IFBC - Day 3 & Summary

Day 3 of IFBC is hard to put into words...but this is a blog so I will try.  I met many interesting people who are writing for different reasons.  For some (like me) blogs are a way to share information and experiences about a specific topic.  For others, it is an outlet for creative expression and a jumping off point to publishing, photography, etc.  Whatever your motivation, this conference provided something for everyone.

The photography session today was amazing on many levels.  Penny de los Santos is not only a talented photographer, she is a gifted speaker and I literally bumped into her as I was walking out at the end of the day and got to tell her that.  I gave her a cupcake luggage tag to show my appreciation!  What I don't know about photography could have filled the room but I came away with so many ideas that I plan to try with upcoming cupcake photos.

I learned something from every speaker, organizer, participant and vendor.  Thanks to the many volunteers who took care of us and provided services behind the scenes that we won't ever know about.  Looking forward to 2011...and having more cupcake representation!

SOMEPIG (lunch truck)

outdoor pizza oven

UDI's lemon muffins
I tried a gluten-free product for the first time!

The Awesome Donut: IFBC Food Photography

It's not exactly a cupcake, but it is round, cake-ish and topped with deliciousness.  I am talking about the cupcake's awesome cousin...the doughnut. Goes great with a POM Peach Passion White Tea!

Perfection on a Plate at IFBC

Eat-Blog-Tweet: IFBC Lunch Trucks

Day 3 at IFBC has been amazing!  Have been spreading cupcake love by giving away cupcake lip gloss and collecting recipes. 

For lunch we were treated to eight local lunch trucks from the Seattle area.  My favorite was the Kaosamai Thai Restaurant. The orange mobile kitchen immediately attracted my attention, but the thai taco is what won me over.

(apologies for not having a picture of the thai taco but I was hungry!
Kaosamai Thai Restaurant
mobile kitchen

Saturday, August 28, 2010

IFBC - Day 2

The day got an early start...sessions started at Theo Chocolate at 8:30 am.  The chocolate factory is in a great location near the water and the vendors had a great breakfast for us.  The pastries and fresh fruit were dee-lish and POM provided a large bin of pomegranate teas.  The coffee was good too!

Each session today provided us with great information about different aspects of food blogging:  The Art of Recipe Writing, Search Engine Optimization/Building Traffic/Social Media, Writing with All Five Senses, Law & Ethics of Food Blogging, and From the Source: People Who Will Change the Way You Think About Food.  The Power Point presentations from these lectures will be available on the IFBC site after the conference so check back soon.

The Wi-Fi was amazing and much appreciated.  We blogged & Tweeted & Facebooked all day.  There were plenty of electrical outlets on each side of the room and people were very considerate about sharing plugs when battery power got low.  I have never Tweeted so much! 

Go Royal Restrooms!  The porta-potties were very nice (and roomy). So many people are blogging about this that I won't.

Today's shout-outs go to:
I ate my first gluten-free product today, a lemon muffin that wasn't dry and tasteless as I had anticipated.  It was actually good and I met quite a few gluten-free advocates.  We had some great discussions about gluten-free high-altitude baking challenges.  If anybody has any high altitude gluten-free cake recipes, please share!

Portable farm!

Platter of Theo Chocolate

My favorite Theo Chocolate

Thanks Foodista!

Thanks to all the 2010 sponsors!

Cupcake Royale - Seattle

Cupcake Royale was on my list of bakeries to visit in Seattle, but I didn't even have to go there....they came to me!  While talking to a blogger at the IFBC opening reception, I learned that the back hallway was filled with cupcakes from Cupcake Royale

I enjoyed talking to the bakery staff and I was treated to their best-seller:  the salted caramel cupcake.  However...my favorite was the red velvet cupcake with cream cheese icing.  Now ya'll know that I have strong opinions about cream cheese icing and their recipe did not disappoint! We had a discussion about red velvet cake being a hard one to pull off.  So many times the cake is dry and tasteless - but not this one.  Their red velvet recipe was moist and dense and would be welcome on any southern table!  As for the cream cheese icing, it exceeded my expectations.  It wasn't just buttercream with a little cream cheese thrown in....I could taste the cream cheese!  BRAVO!

salted caramel cupcakes

Cupcake Royale on Urbanspoon

Friday, August 27, 2010

IFBC - Day 1

The line for the IFBC registration seemed like five miles long, but the hotel staff was there to serve wine & sangria (which was excellent BTW) and talking with other bloggers helped to pass the time.  It actually moved faster than I thought. 

After registration, we headed downstairs to the meeting rooms to pick up the most awesome of goody bags (the french press is my favorite item) and have some fantastic food.  POM was there to offer pomegranate cosmos, and they gave us recipe cards so we can make a batch when we get home. 

Morgan Spurlock (Super-Size Me) shared some of his food experiences and offered insights about blogging and the importance of building relationships with our readers. 

I met so many bloggers tonight and I wish I could mention them all.  Tonight's shout-outs go to:
Thanks to all the vendors, chefs & their staff and the Hotel Monaco! 

Come back tomorrow for a recap of Day 2!

IFBC attendees

Foodista Best of Food Blogs Cookbook
coming in November 2010

so many cupcakes...so little time

Morgan Spurlock interview

pomegranate cosmos

the awesome goody bag contents

Trophy Cupcakes - Seattle

OH - EM - GEE!!  I have just eaten the most perfect lemon cupcake with lemon buttercream EVER! 
Trophy Cupcakes was also on my list of must visit cupcake bakeries because I had heard so many good things on other cupcake blogs.  I just had to see for myself. 

I bought two cupcakes....lemon with lemon buttercream and a Snowball (chocolate cake with coconut buttercream).  My head is still spinning with dee-lish-us-ness!  The lemon was subtle in the cake and the buttercream was so good I could almost take each tiny piece of lemon zest.  Perfection!  The Snowball was incredible.  The chocolate cake was moist and dense and the coconut buttercream is a 10 on my sweetness scale...and you know how I like a sweet buttercream. 

These cupcakes are so good I am tempted to move to Seattle!

Trophy Cupcake Box

the Trophy Cupcake selection

Snowball & Lemon cupcakes

Trophy Cupcakes and Party on Urbanspoon

Wink Cupcakes - Seattle

My first stop after leaving the airport was Wink Cupcakes.  I had made a list earlier this week of the cupcake bakeries I wanted to visit.  I actually got lost and accidentally found myself on Queen Anne Ave. N...the street where Wink is located. 

Wink is in a quiet and cute neighborhood close to downtown, but it feels like the suburbs.  The bakery is beautiful and the staff was very helpful.  I got a latte and 6 minis.  The carrot cake & red velvet cake were outstanding.  You know how I feel about cream cheese icing and this was good but you know I have to say it....needs more cream cheese.  But very good nonetheless.  The packaging was a pretty box with polka dots and the Wink logo.

1817 Queen Anne Ave. N.

Wink minis

Beautiful packaging!

Wink Cupcakes on Urbanspoon

IFBC in Seattle

The IFBC International Food Bloggers Conference) begins in 90 minutes at the Hotel Monaco.  The hotel is fantastic.  I don't know how or why, but I got upgraded to a suite.....which is sweet! 

I arrived this morning but spent the day tasting cupcakes at several bakeries that I had heard about and wanted to try.  I got lost many times but finally reached my goal and have eaten more than my fair share of goodness.  FYI - don't always trust the GPS on your phone! 

You can follow the IFBC online this weekend...there are podcasts and streaming video available. 

Thursday, August 26, 2010


I haven't seen the movie Eat-Pray-Love but starting tomorrow I will be Eating-Blogging-Tweeting at the IFBC (International Food Bloggers Conference) in Seattle. I was on the waiting list last year and did not get to go, so I will be making up for lost time.

The last time I checked the list of attendees, I am the only cupcake blogger, so you can expect continuous live cupcake coverage! So grab a platter of cupcakes and camp out here all weekend for updates & photos.

Autumn cupcake platter
Carpe Cupcakes!


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Fabulous Cupcake Necklace

I am always on the lookout for cupcake jewelry and I found a gem (no pun intended) on Etsy last night.  It is a silver cupcake with white icing and Swarovski crystal sprinkles.  The silver chain also has a "Made with Love" charm.  I must have one!

$14.00 from reverberate via Etsy

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Cupcake T-Shirts

I have to work a day shift in the ER today and I rarely work days so getting up and getting to work by 7 am is really hard!  This image describes the breakfast I need...super delicious & super nutritious. 

And no matter how busy we get, I promise to....

Monday, August 23, 2010

Basketweave Cupcakes

Last week I made a small birthday cake for a friend.  I did an old-fashioned basketweave pattern around the cake and then filled the top with fresh berries.  Next week I am going to make basketweave cupcakes for another birthday celebration.  I am doing some research today on how I want these to look....what do ya'll think about these?  I am leaning towards the chocolate one just because of my chocolate addiction. 

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Recipe of the Week - Lemon Curd (microwave)

Week 59

I love to use lemon curd as a filling for cupcakes...zesty, not too sweet, YUM!  I have tried many recipes but always end up using this one because it is so easy.  Enjoy!

1 cup white sugar
3 eggs
1 cup fresh lemon juice
3 lemons, zested
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted

In a microwave-safe bowl, whisk together the sugar and eggs until smooth. Stir in lemon juice, lemon zest and butter. Cook in the microwave for one-minute intervals, stirring after each minute until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a metal spoon. Remove from the microwave, and pour into a small bowl. Store for up to three weeks in the refrigerator.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Happy 25th Anniversary Kristi & Cliff

We celebrated the 25th wedding anniversary of good friends tonight.  I made a cake instead of cupcakes. I almost never use fondant but this was a special occasion!  

Congrats Cliff & Kristi! 

One Love One Ocean

I am watching CMT this afternoon....the One Love One Ocean Jimmy Buffet concert from Gulf Shores, AL.  He organized this free concert to encourage visitors to come to the Gulf Coast and promote the message that the oil spill has not damaged the Gulf Coast beaches. Organizers printed 35,000 tickets, but the actual attendance could not really be counted.  From the look of the crowd, my guess would be at least 150,000 people on the beach. 

The first time I saw Jimmy Buffet live was when he was in college at the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg.  I grew up about 90 miles north of there and drove down with a few friends to listen to this new guy.  There were maybe 200 people there.  The next time I went to one of his concerts....there were 40,000 people in the stadium.

Go online to buy the One Love One Ocean t-shirt and the CD from the concert. Wish I was there eating a cheeseburger (in paradise)!

Here are some cupcakes for all you parrotheads out there!

parrot cupcake cake from Cupcakes Nouveau

Friday, August 20, 2010

Hannah Montana Cupcakes

SSShhhh!  Don't tell anybody, but I am a HUGE Hannah Montana fan.  I work mostly night shifts in the ER and the TV is always on.  Our cable system shows Hannah Montana on the Disney Channel at midnight every night and I started watching one night when the ER was slow.  I had to watch a marathon to catch up because I was several years behind in episodes.  When I am watching the show, I keep the remote in my hand at all times and make sure the recall button is on a news channel.  Please keep my secret!