Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Muffins and Cupcakes

First I apologize if you came upon this post to find recipes or photos of muffins and cupcakes.  I must admit if I post such things, the pics or pastries would not be my own.  You see, I have never made cupcakes and the first time I tried to bake muffins from scratch it was a flop.  Since then I have always shied away from baking, especially any kind of bread from scratch.

Whatever happened in the kitchen to forever burn the traumatic experience into my memory?  I substituted baking soda for baking powder in the muffin recipe--I didn't know any better.  Instead of golden muffin tips rising out of the pan, the batter expanded and overflowed like lava...more like aʻā.  And that was the end of my baking days.

Today I read that baking soda produces carbon dioxide bubbles that help dough rise and make for tender baked goods.  There was a little tip for ensuring that the baking ingredient is still potent; combine 1/4 teaspoons baking soda with 2 teaspoons vinegar.  If the mixture fizzes, it's fresh enough to do the job.  If it goes flat, save the soda for scrubbing pots and pans.  My tip--don't put it in muffins.

Speaking of muffins, I asked myself what is the difference between a muffin and a cupcake?  Is it because one lacks frosting where the other one has one?  On the surface this is probably true.  I also read that when the fats, sugar, and egg ratio doubles or more, then you have more of a cake.  Ahoy--cup, cake!  So where does the name muffin ... nevermind.

Well the way I see it, why bake when I can buy?  Especially these Cupkates by Kate.  Who needs flowers when they can have a sweet bouquet?  And the spooky treats are just in time for Halloween!!

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