Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Challenge Book #27 - Strawberry Cream Butterfly Cakes

I'm not sure how to approach this other than to just say - that right now I am dealing with some substantial health issues. All I really want to say is that it is not life threatenening, but it is hard and while the end is far away it will all be over eventually. I just have to get through it.

When this all began I blithely thought that my baking and cooking and blogging could just continue on - it would be a refuge and a solace. It hasn't quite worked out that way. It's been harder and harder to get into the kitchen, both physically and mentally. In a way, it's been one of the worst things about this whole ordeal - slowly losing something you love - your normal life just slipping away.

So anyway, I will continue to post what I can, when I can. But it may not be often and it may not always be great. I have also resigned from the Daring Bakers for now. I just can't commit to a regular baking schedule and it wouldn't be fair for the group. I still try to visit my favourite blogs. Even if I don't comment often I'm still blown away by all the great food that is being posted.

But enough of that. Onto a brighter note, I did make these strawberry cream butterfly cakes a few weeks back. I didn't make them for any particular reason. I just wanted to make something pretty to cheer myself up. I picked lots of bright cheerful flowers to decorate the plate. Then I poured a big glass of milk, sat myself down in a nice sunny spot and ate away. Life became a much better place.

Generally, when I make cupcakes I use the excellent Vanilla Vanilla cupcake recipe I first discovered on Stephanie's lovely blog A Whisk and a Spoon. But for these I decided to test another recipe from Marie Claire Kitchen for my KJ wants a Kitchen Aid Challenge.

I'm glad I did because this is a great cupcake recipe. I do not like dense, heavy cupcakes - especially for butterfly cakes. In my view, they should be light and fluffy. These fit the bill perfectly. They are as soft and airy as I think cake can get. And very basic to make. I was just delighted

Not having the energy for buttercream or anything too elaborate. I simply whipped some cream and mixed in some finely diced fresh strawberries to make the filling. A little drop of strawberry preserves at the based of the cake before piling on the cream also added a little extra taste sensation.

This is Challenge Book #27 in the KJ wants a Kitchen Aid Challenge. I have generally used this book for its great basic recipes. It also has some great drinks recipes - I can particularly recommend this cheesecake shake. It is scrumptious.

Vanilla Cupcakes
(adapted from Marie Claire Kitchen)

175 gm unsalted butter
175 gm caster sugar
3 eggs
125 ml milk
1 tspn vanilla extract
175 gm self raising flour

Cream butter and sugar. Beat in the eggs, milk and vanilla extract. The mixture may look slightly curdled at this stage, but that's okay.

Sift the self raising flour and fold in.

Spoon the mixutre into patty cases and bake for 15-20 minutes in a 180C oven.


At 3:19 pm, Blogger Cindy said...

I'm really sorry to hear about your health problems! I hope the healing process is as smooth and speedy as possible.

I'll look forward to your posts however rare they need be. :-)

At 5:12 pm, Blogger Meeta K. Wolff said...

Sorry to hear about your health probs KJ! I do hope you'll get well soon!

At 12:49 am, Blogger giz said...

As one who has been very familiar with health issues I can sympathize with the feelings you're going through. It is a process, albeit not pleasant and that it's not life threatening means that you are a) lucky and b) having to let go of the anxiety and let the process take it's course. Don't be hard on yourself.

At 2:34 am, Blogger Deborah said...

I'm so sorry to hear about the health problems! You are in my thoughts and I hope everything is better soon! I will still be here reading when you do post!

At 7:08 am, Blogger thecelticcookinshanghai said...

Hopefully things will get better soon. Keep blogging through it.

At 9:01 am, Blogger grace said...

first and foremost, i hope these health concerns are behind you soon!
secondly, simply because i'd be remiss if i didn't say it, these cupcakes look stellar. nicely done. :)

At 9:54 am, Blogger steph- whisk/spoon said...

oh KJ, i am so sorry to hear this. but glad to know that it is something you will get through. hope you are resting up and staying strong. xoxo.

At 12:57 pm, Blogger lynne said...

Sorry you're not feeling well. Hope things get better soon.

At 12:24 am, Blogger Patricia Scarpin said...

I did not know you had that book - it's one of my favorites. I love the photos and the recipes I have tried were really good. These cakes are so delicate and pretty.

I'm sorry to hear you are no well, my dear. I know you'll get better soon. Lots of love from this side of the world, you bet.

At 11:50 am, Blogger Lyra said...

I am really sorry to hear that you are confronting difficult times health-wise. I know it isnt easy and I hope that you are getting plenty of rest, reading your cookbooks, and making your way steadily through with peace and quaminity.

I certainly hope that this challenge is over soon, and remember, you have lots of good wishes coming from the food blog community!

At 8:40 pm, Blogger KJ said...

Thanks everyone. Your kindness means a lot to mean.

At 4:32 pm, Blogger Laura said...

These are absolutely gorgeous and scrumptious looking.

I've been out of it for a while--my computer died--and so I am sad to hear about your health woes. I've been there and it is not fun. :( I hope you are feeling better soon....

At 6:32 pm, Blogger Catastrophe Waitress said...

i just found your blog today - it's lovely!
beautiful pictures and yummy recipes.
i especially love these cakes, my absolute favorite when i was a child.


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