Thursday, May 19, 2011

Project Cupcake

Confession, I love to bake. If you're at all like me, you have more than one cookbook in your kitchen and you hate to even think about downsizing your collection. You never know when you might need that one recipe that you didn't even know you had. Part of my inspiration for this project was to actually make the recipes in those cookbooks that I always say I'm going to do. Not all of my cookbooks are baking related, but I would say roughly 90% of them are. It's no secret I like sweets and my "baking cabinet" as I affectionately call it, is proof of that fact. For whatever reason whenever I need a recipe I immediately turn to the Internet to find something new. When in reality I have books of new recipes sitting in my kitchen cabinet just waiting for me to find them.

Now, the big question... which cookbook do I start with? After some contemplation I decided to go with my favorite. Cupcakes. Is there anything better than a personal serving of cake, dressed in a cute little wrapper with cute little decorations? If there is, I haven't found it. Except maybe if that cute little cupcake is paired with a personal serving of ice cream. Yes, I have a sweet tooth, I'd go so far as to say I have a sweet mouth (that's what she said). Okay, so back to choosing the perfect cookbook. For Christmas one year I asked for and received Martha Stewart's Cupcakes: 175 Inspired Ideas for Everyone's Favorite Treat. I have owned this book for at least a year, and I think I may have made one cupcake out of the entire book. This is no slam to Martha because I think she's great and wish everyday that I could some day have an empire like hers. Yes, I'll keep dreaming.

The book has been chosen, next, my method for choosing recipes. Do I go with the logical starting from the front and working my way through the book? Maybe start in the back and work my way forward. Maybe just close my eyes, open the book and that's the recipe I use. Decisions, decisions. I opted to start at the beginning and work my way through it. That way it's easy to keep track of what I've already done and if anyone should feel so inclined, they can follow along and know what's coming next. I think it'd be great if someone decided to do that.

If I had it my way, I would bake cupcakes everyday. But, Bobby (my boyfriend) would surely yell at me and claim I'm single-handedly trying to make him fat. He has made this claim more than once, this morning in fact, to which I just shake my head and maintain that I do not force him to eat anything that I make. That said, I decided baking a recipe once a week would be sufficient and I'm going to do my best to keep with that plan. Sometimes I get requests to bake other things for friends, and sometimes I'm just exhausted from work and don't have the energy to do anything. But, I'm going to try to stick to one cupcake recipe a week. Your job is to hold me to it.

Lastly, how should I document this little project of mine. Step-by-step pictures and instructions, including the recipe, showing step-by-step instructions with pictures, or maybe just pictures of the completed project? Should I review the recipe and what I think of the finished product? Should I give tips, what I found to be difficult, what I liked and didn't like? In the end I decided to do almost all of that. Because I'm by no means a professional photographer, but would like to be some day, step-by-step pictures will not be provided. I've also found it's hard to take pictures while baking. It almost never ends well for the camera. I will however include the recipe in some fashion, pictures of the finished products as well as tips, anecdotes, and little nuggets of fun from the baking process. Most importantly, my thoughts on the finished product. If a cupcake isn't tasty, I'm not wasting the calories to eat it and neither should you. I may love sweets, but I'm also conscious of how much of them I eat and how that directly correlates to how I look in a bathing suit and the tightness of my jeans. Summer is just around the corner! Any questions? I hope not. Wondering what's up first? Humor me and tell me you are.