Growing up instead of taking toys to bed with me I took books, tons of books, books enough to give me paper cuts because I would roll over onto them. So to me it is imperative that kiddos start early. Studies show that when you read just 15minutes a day to a child it makes a huge difference in their lives. That being said, Sunday nights (in my time zone) I am going to publish a segment called Cuppycakes and kiddos (as obviously this is titled). In it I will review a children’s series and give you an amazingly easy (and I know this because D is the baker not me) cuppycake recipe to try out at home. And please feel free to send in your pictures of your sweet treat and I will post them up here!!! So here we go, book blog so first things first…
High Rise Private Eyes Cynthia Rylant
Cynthia is a well-known children’s author that has put out tons of books. I love this series for so many reasons. It is a chapter book, but in big words and a short chapter format it makes the transition from short stories to longer books easy. Also it is a step two book, meaning it has a lot of words kiddos who are just learning how to read can figure out.
The book is about two friends Bunny Brown (who is a bunny) and Jack Jones (who is a raccoon with an obscure name) that live in a high rise building. They are partners in a detective agency that solves crimes around the neighborhood. And by crimes I mean, who took the bus drivers fuzzy dice and who took the gooses fancy sugar cubes. Through easy to find hints and clues they solve the mystery and save the day. Like all good detective should. Usually the book includes them celebrating with a snack (because Jack is ALWAYS hungry) and has incredibly witty banter that even adult types will chuckle about. There are only eight books in the series which is the huge downside but kids will want to read them over and over again. Awesome way to end a long day *sage nod*
And now onto the cuppycake
Red Velvet Cupcake
2oz unsalted butter at room temperature
5oz fine sugar
½ oz. cocoa powder
4tsp red food coloring
2 tsp. vanilla extract
½ cup buttermilk
5oz plain all purpose flour
½ tsp. baking soda
1½ tsp. white vinegar
1 x 12-hole cupcake or muffin tray, lined with paper cases
For the frosting:
10 oz sifted powdered sugar
1 ½ oz. unsalted butter, at room temperature
4 ½ oz. cream cheese, cold.
1. Preheat the oven to 170°C/325°F
2. Put the butter and the sugar in a freestanding electric mixer with a paddle attachment (or use a handheld electric whisk) and beat on medium speed until light and fluffy and well mixed. Turn the mixer up to high speed, slowly add the egg and beat until everything is well incorporated.
3. In a separate bowl, mix together the cocoa powder, red food coloring and vanilla extract to make a very thick, dark paste. Add to the butter mixture and mix thoroughly until evenly combined and colored. Turn the mixer down to slow speed and slowly pour in half the buttermilk.
4. Beat until well mixed, then add half the flour and beat until everything is well incorporated. Repeat this process until all the buttermilk and flour have been added. Scrape down the side of the bowl again. Turn the mixer up to high speed and beat until you have a smooth, even mixture. Turn the mixer down to low speed and add the baking soda and vinegar. Beat until well mixed, then turn up the speed again and beat for a couple more minutes.
5. Meanwhile, make the frosting by beating the powdered sugar the remaining unsalted butter together in a freestanding electric mixer with a paddle attachment (or use a handheld electric whisk) on medium-slow speed until the mixture comes together and is well mixed. Add the cream cheese in one go and beat it until it is completely incorporated. Turn the mixer up to medium-high speed. Continue beating until the frosting is light and fluffy, at least five minutes. Do not over beat, as it can quickly become runny.
6. Spoon the mixture into the paper cases evenly or use an ice cream scoop, until two-thirds full and bake in the preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the sponge bounces back when touched. A skewer inserted in the center should come out clean. Leave the cupcakes to cool slightly in the tray before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely. When the cupcakes are cold, spoon the cream cheese frosting on top.
Sprinkle with cake crumbs and you’re done!
Voila! Cuppycakes and Kiddos!
Catch you on the flipside
xx C&D xx