Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

Halloween just might be the best day of the year for celebrating with cupcakes...they are easy to serve at parties and easy to grab on your way out the door to trick-or-treat.  Wear a cupcake costume all day today!

Dracula cupcake

spider cupcake wrapper


Saturday, October 30, 2010

Cupcake Miscellaneous

I bought this cupcake necklace in a little shop across the street from Carlo's Bakery in Hoboken, NJ.  I have worn it every day this week!

I found this cupcake box filled with chocolate candies at JFK while waiting for my flight back to Reno.  I didn't buy the candies, but I still wanted to share it.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Leaving NYC

Leaving NYC today and flying back to Reno.  One last thought.....


chocolate-covered strawberry cupcake

Thursday, October 28, 2010

NYC Cupcakes

The number of cupcakes in New York City is staggering...and there is no way for one cupcake blogger to taste them all.  I did my best, and enjoyed every bite.  If you live there, you probably already know where to find these delicious morsels.  If you plan to visit NYC, add these stops to your itinerary.

Many locations make it convenient.  Crumbs offers three sizes:  the taste (2.25"), the classic (3") and the signature (4.25").  The number of flavors is mind-boggling and they cater and deliver too.  If you are going to order the signature large cupcake - take a couple of friends and extra forks.

red velvet cupcake

chocolate/vanilla sprinkle

Two locations (Chelsea & Tribeca).  The web site even gives you the subway directions, which are extrememly helpful to those trying to learn how to navigate the subway system!  They are open late, which is nice because New Yorkers are out and about late.  Order online or have them deliver!

Another good choice!  They charge $3.00 for a basic cupcake (a bargain in NYC) and also deliver. 

Butter Lane

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Another Apology

I am sooo sorry that I don't have a great post for you today...we stayed in Central Park all day and I didn't eat a single cupcake.  I feel very guilty because there are so many cupcakes in Manhattan and I need to get out there and try them. 

Come back tomorrow and I promise to have a cupcake or two...or three for you!

Apologies for the Broken Link

I apologize for the broken link in Monday's is the correct link.  I wrote "blogpost" instead of "blogspot" when I was typing the URL.  Valuable life lesson:  you should not be allowed to type after two martinis.

What Happens in NYC Stays in NYC (allegedly)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Magnolia Bakery - NYC

Magnolia Bakery...401 Bleeker Street in New York.  Remember the scene in Sex and the City when Miranda & Carrie are sitting on the sidewalk eating cupcakes?  The best part about visiting Magnolia is that the house where Carrie lived (the exterior) was only 2 blocks from Magnolia Bakery and I got to visit both places today!

Magnolia Bakery was packed with people!  The staff was very friendly and helpful and I selected the most basic of cupcakes...a vanilla with vanilla buttercream and a vanilla with chocolate buttercream.  I loved the chocolate buttercream!  My friend Shelly bought a very cute apron and some cookies. 

I left my Carpe Cupcakes! card in their tip jar and I gave the person at the register a cupcake luggage tag. I hope they will read my blog someday.

Very helpful staff

Half-eaten cupcakes
(sorry...I couldn't wait)

beautiful packaging

bakery craziness

happy customers

you can watch the cupcakes get frosted!

Monday, October 25, 2010

NYC Day 1: Carlo's Bakery

Our first day in New York was great and you can read all about our adventures on the blog I created just for this week’s trip…What Happens in NYC stays in NYC (allegedly).

We had a delicious lunch at a local Thai restaurant and then took the subway to Hoboken, NJ to Carlo's Bakery….where Cake Boss is filmed. We took the D train to 34th street and then took a subway called “The PATH” to Hoboken. Relatively simple. Hoboken was great! . Manhattan was 5 minutes away and yet Hoboken was quiet and homey. Very little traffic. Nice neighborhoods.

Carlo's Bakery looked just like it did on TV. None of the cast was there, but the desserts were fabulous. Been there….even bought the t-shirt. I got a red velvet cupcake and bought a cupcake necklace in a little shop across the street from the bakery!

Carlo's Bakery
95 Washington St.
Hoboken, NJ

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Carpe Cupcakes! goes to New York

If you are reading this on Sunday, October 24th, I am on a plane somewhere between Salt Lake City and New York.  As soon as I land I will whip out my list of cupcake bakeries and start eating my way from one end of Manhattan to another!

Stay tuned this week for cupcake bakery reviews and much more....but what happens in NYC stays in NYC (allegedly). 

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Recipe of the Week - Marshmallow Frosting

I am traveling to New York tomorrow, so I am posting this week's recipe early.

Marshmallow Frosting (which most southerners will know as Seven-Minute Icing) is my favorite for chocolate and coconut cupcakes.  It makes a beautiful glossy presentation that can be piled high, but it must be used immediately.  It will keep for most of the day it is made (if not too humid), but the egg whites will begin to break down after about 12 hours.

When I was growing up, we used to fight to lick the bowl after my mom made this icing.  On really humid days she couldn't make it (which was most of the time), so we learned to appreciate it when we had it.

Marshmallow Frosting 

8 large egg whites
2 cups sugar
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 teaspoons vanilla
Place egg whites, sugar, and cream of tartar in the heatproof bowl of an electric mixer. Set over a saucepan with simmering water. Whisk constantly until sugar is dissolved and whites are warm to the touch - approximately 3 to 4 minutes.

Transfer bowl to electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, and beat, starting on low speed, gradually increasing to high, until stiff glossy peaks form (5 to 7 minutes). Add vanilla, and mix until combined. Use immediately.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Cupcakes & Doughnuts

What could be more perfect than a cupcake?   A doughnut on top!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Cupcake Wine Bottle Stopper

It isn't snowy quite yet, but it will start soon...and this snowman cupcake wine stopper will be just the ticket to keep your wine bottle sealed!  Su Vino Winery has many other styles as well.

snowman cupcake bottle stopper

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Cupcake Signs

As Bill Engvall would's your sign!

neon sign (can be customized)

A Balanced Diet is a Cupcake in Each Hand

jdong  via  Flickr

the only way reason to run a marathon

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


While waiting on a flight in the Seattle airport, I found these TeaCupcakes by Fred & Friends.  The teacups are made of 100% silicone and the saucers are made of hard plastic.  They sit up straight on a baking sheet and do not lose their shape.  I baked vanilla cupcakes in them (using yesterday's recipe) and frosted them with lemon buttercream! 

Monday, October 18, 2010

Cupcake Recipe Card Holder

My friend Beth gave me this very cute cupcake recipe card holder yesterday...along with some super chic mini salt & pepper grinders! 

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Recipe of the Week - Vanilla Cupcakes

Every blog I read has at least one post concerning the search for the perfect vanilla cupcake recipe.  I have also been searching for many years...and I might have just found it!  The Magnolia Bakery recipe and Amy Sedaris' recipe held a lot of promise, but these recipes did not stand up to my altitude adjustments. You could have parked a truck in the sinkhole in the middle of the cupcakes!

I have no idea where this recipe came from or to whom to give credit.  This recipe was in my recipe box with no information on the card.  The cake is moist and does not sink in the middle during baking.  It doesn't dry out easily and passed my "overnight" test.  I taste the cake shortly after baking and then again the following day to see how much it dried out overnight.  This recipe did not dry out at all. 

Sending out a big thank you to the person who created this recipe!

Vanilla Cupcakes

4 1/4 cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 sticks unsalted butter - room temperature
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
4 eggs - room temperature
2 cups buttermilk

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Prepare your muffin tins with cupcake liners.
Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium speed until pale and fluffy, then beat in vanilla. Add eggs one at a time, beating well and scraping down the bowl after each addition.  Beat in buttermilk until just combined (mixture will look curdled). Add flour mixture in three batches, mixing until each addition is just incorporated. 

Frost with your favorite buttercream...or serve with fresh berries!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

National Boss' Day 2010

Patricia Bays Haroski registered "National Boss' Day" with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in 1958. She was working as a secretary for State Farm Insurance Company in Deerfield, Illinois at the time and chose October 16 because she forgot that the birthday of her boss, who was her father, was actually on the 16th. (Wikipedia)

Since October 16th landed on a Saturday this year, most people celebrated it yesterday.  However, I am working nights this weekend so I am celebrating today.  Thanks to Pam & Jan for all you do for us!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Make Your Own Wedding Cupcake Wrappers

These wedding cupcake wrappers were made from paper doiles...get the template and access the tutorial from Intimate Weddings!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Tahoe Salmon

We went to Taylor Creek yesterday to see the Kokanee salmon run...and there were thousands of salmon!  Taylor Creek is an alpine stream that is the only spawning habitat for Tahoe's Kokanee salmon, a landlocked version of the Sockeye salmon. 

Salmon cupcakes would probably not be on anybody's menu, but cupcakes that are salmon-colored would!

Taylor Creek Salmon
Lake Tahoe

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Social Network

I went to see The Social Network last night and really enjoyed it.  I love how the story was told during a present-day deposition with flashbacks telling the bulk of the story.  Only those who were involved know the intentions in their hearts and the motivations behind their actions.  The rest of us will just have to enjoy the movie and take the facts as they are reported.

I joined Facebook way back when you had to have a college email address to sign up.  I have since canceled my Facebook account (which was not an easy process by the way), and Carpe Cupcakes! has a page but it is not being used. 

Social media has a purpose but I haven't really figured out exactly what that is.  I find social media and networking to be a huge invasion of privacy and don't see the appeal of alerting everyone I know that I went to the store to get milk.  Advertising is a legitimate use of the technology, so maybe we should call it something advertising? 

Whatever your opinion on this topic, social media is popular. So eat some Facebook cupcakes and remember that what goes on the Internet stays on the Internet....forever. 

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Ms. Darcy's Knitted Cupcakes

I tried to knit once.  A neighbor took me under her wing and tried to teach me.  It was fun, but I never made anything that didn't have holes in it because I could knit like crazy but I couldn't PURL.  Every time I tried to purl I would drop stitches.  So after a few weeks I switched to crochet....and I made afghans and scarves and pot holders and Christmas ornaments. Success! Maybe one day the knitting bug will bite me again and I can make cupcakes like Ms. Darcy.

(all photos are from the Flickr photostream of NineInchNachosll

chocolate cupcake with rainbow sprinkles

blueberry cupcake

angel food cupcake

Monday, October 11, 2010

October 11th - Thanksgiving Day (Canada)

Happy Thanksgiving Day to our friends in Canada!