There wasn't much prep involved in this recipe, which I knew, and I almost didn't read all the way through it because I had made it before, but I did. And I'm glad I did. Because, I saw that I was supposed to include toasted pecans. Since I hadn't included them the first time I made these cupcakes I forgot that they were supposed to be in the recipe. So, first order of business, toast the pecans. While the pecans were toasting I worked on the rest of the recipe, which was extremely easy. Although I did leave out the butter to get to room temperature, since the weather has started to cool off it was a little hard when I was ready to start the batter. I nuked it in the microwave for 10 seconds and it was good to go (I also remembered to leave the eggs out to get to room temperature, but they were still quite cool as well). Fall is here!
Since the batter was a little thick I didn't employ my pour-by-Pyrex method to fill the cupcake pan. I used a tablespoon instead (I really need to get one of those ice cream scoops that I see the people on Cupcake Wars use) using about 1 1/2 good-size spoonfuls to fill the liners. Not the most perfect method, but almost all the cupcakes turned out to be the same size so I was pretty happy with how they turned out.
Now for the brown sugar cream cheese frosting (no luck on Martha's website for this one either), whew, that's a mouthful. This is the first time I've made a true frosting in awhile. My most recent cupcakes have for the most part been frosted with whipped cream. Very unexciting. I like to get the practice of making different frostings. Yes, I had already made this frosting in the past to go with these cupcakes, but still, it was a nice walk down memory lane. It was a pleasant walk as well since this frosting is very easy to make. I just used a thin icing spatula (I don't even know if that's what they're called, but they look like this) to frost the cupcakes since that's what the cupcakes in the picture from the cookbook looked like they were frosted with. I tried to give the cupcakes a little height so they would make for more interesting pictures. Without using all my frosting for one cupcake I did my best.
As I sometimes do, I took these cupcakes to work with me to share and I received a really nice compliment. It's not uncommon for people to tell me they enjoyed the cupcakes, or they're delicious, things like that, and I of course appreciate everyone's kind words. But, on this particular day I was very flattered. After I had passed out the cupcakes to various coworkers I received an email with the subject line of Thanks. It's pretty rare that anyone emails me to thank me for a cupcake, especially someone I don't really know like this person. In all honesty, I introduced myself and then handed him a cupcake. I digress... within the email he had said that he enjoyed the cupcake. He went on to ask if I'd ever seen Cupcake Wars and that he had recently been a judge on the show that's going to air sometime in January. I am of course familiar with the show, duh, I blog about cupcakes. But he doesn't know that. So anyway, he continued to say that the cupcake I had given him was better than most of the ones he tried on the show. I know, I know, he didn't say it was better than all the cupcakes he tried, but I'll take being better than most. After all, I'm no professional. Part of me wanted to reply and ask him if he could point me in the direction of the Cupcake Wars people, but then I came to my senses and realized I have no business on that show. I would be blown out of the water. So instead, I simply replied thank you for the compliment, that's very nice of you to say, and forwarded the email to my home email address so I'll have it when I'm in the need of a pick-me-up. Dork? You bet.