Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Pistachio Cream Cupcakes

You might think with my little blogging hiatus that I had stopped baking at home for a bit, but it's actually much sillier than that. I have been baking away and have several things I have been meaning to share with the blogosphere, but haven't really found the time to write. But I think that's actually a good thing. It means that I am learning to relax a little and not feel guilty that about spending most of my free time catching up with friends rather than typing on my keyboard in front of the TV or in an empty coffee shop.
Things have been a little hectic in my life in the best way possible. This week marks the beginning of full time recipe development-testing phase. Yesterday I baked about twelve recipes of 4 different cookies. I picked my favorite batch of each cookie for taste testing. Two of them were approved, and the other two require minor changes that I mostly insisted on. There was even an oatmeal raisin cookie that I actually liked! Who would have imagined it?! I also created a pretty dreamy vegan rendition of the grocery store sugar cookie with that thick creamy frosting. Yesterday I also found out that my assistant has been hired, that the bakery renovation is two weeks ahead of schedule, and that there is now a complete line of natural, vegan food colorings in tons of shades!
The rest of the week I plan on knocking out recipes for the remaining cookies, all the bars & brownie/blondies. Then it's on to cakes & pies. I'm excited to start making lists of all my ingredients I need to order, all the bakeware I need to set up shop, and finally see the labels that will go on all my products!

leaves and flours pistachio cream cupcake

So today you are going to have to settle for a simple, yet delicious cupcake. You can also be assured that there are several extravagant desserts coming soon as well. This cake is one of my favorite flavors, vanilla bean. Just add 1 tsp of vanilla bean paste or the seeds of 1 scraped vanilla bean to your favorite white or yellow cake recipe.
The pistachio cream frosting is part of the recipe for a vegan chocolate pistachio whoopie pie from Natalie of Bake & Destroy. When I made those whoopie pies, I knew that cream would end up on top of a cake in the near future. It's such a great sweet & salty combination. If you don't want to tint the frosting with a tube of chemical dye, then I suggest using concentrated chlorophyll. I used it for these cupcakes, and got the exact shade I wanted. If you are trying to get a bright green you might notice a slightly salty, earthy taste but you won't notice that if you are trying to achieve a mint color. Also, I highly suggest that no one ever tries to dye sweets bright green with spinach powder. I found out this year that it will make beautiful hand stenciled shamrock cookies taste like vegetables. Live & learn.
I hope everyone is enjoying this really great spring weather, and maybe even the joy of early season produce! What's exciting in your lives?


  1. these look great! salty + sweet combo always reminds me of you! what's exciting in my life? learning to work with fondant + saving up/planning to come visit you in DC, that's what!

  2. ooh spinach powder must have been whacky! this sweet and salty pistachio cream. and thats a lot of recipe development baking!