Sunday, May 24, 2015

Chocolate Cupcake Strawberry Shortcakes


  • 1 1/2 pounds strawberries, hulled, rinsed and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons orange-flavored liqueur, if desired
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons sugar, or to taste
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons lemon juice, or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange peel
  • For the cupcakes:
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons softened butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 ounce bittersweet chocolate, melted
  • 3 ounces buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • For the whipped cream:
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar, plus additional for sifting over cupcakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 8 (1/2-cup) muffin tins with paper cups.
Sift first flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Beat butter until creamy with an electric mixer; add sugar, a little at a time, until light and fluffy. Add egg and chocolate, a little at a time, beating until just incorporated.
Whisk together buttermilk and vanilla in a small bowl. Add flour mixture to chocolate mixture alternately with buttermilk mixture, beginning and ending with flour, beating until just combined.
Spoon batter into lined muffin tins, filling 2/3 full. Bake 15 to 18 minutes or until a cake tester inserted in centers comes out clean with a few crumbs attached. Cool in pans 5 minutes, remove from pans and cool completely.
To make the whipped cream, combine heavy cream, sugar and vanilla in a bowl. Whip the cream to soft peaks with an electric mixer.
To assemble: Cut tops off 6 cupcakes. Smooth a layer of whipped cream over bottoms of cupcakes and top cream with strawberries. Place tops back on cupcakes and garnish each with a dollop of heavy cream and a strawberry. Sift powdered sugar over cupcakes.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Crack Pie

I've seen this recipe over and over but the original is from Momofoku.  I however followed the recipe from  Averie Cooks.  


1/4 c. unsalted butter, melted
1 recipe Oat Cookie (recipe follows)
1 tbsp. light brown sugar, packed
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1 recipe Crack Pie Filling (recipe follows)
confectioners’ sugar for dusting
Oat Cookie
1/2 c. unsalted butter, softened
1/3 c. light brown sugar, packed
3 tbsp. white sugar, granulated
1 large egg yolk
1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. old-fashioned rolled oats
1/8 tsp. baking powder
pinch baking soda
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
Crack Pie Filling
1 c. unsalted butter, melted
1 1/2 c. white sugar, granulated
3/4 c. light brown sugar, packed
1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 c. corn powder (corn powder is defined as freeze-dried corn, ground to a fine powder)
1/4 c. milk powder
3/4 c. heavy cream
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
8 large egg yolks


To prepare the Oat Cookie crust, preheat the oven to 350°. In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, cream butter and sugars on medium-high for 2 to 3 minutes until fluffy and pale yellow in color. Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl with a spatula. On a lower speed, add the egg to incorporate. Increase the speed back up to a medium-high for 1 to 2 minutes until the sugar granules fully dissolve and the mixture is a pale white color. On a lower speed, add the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix 60-75 seconds until your dough comes together and all remnants of dry ingredients have incorporated. Your dough will still be a slightly fluffy, fatty mixture in comparison to your average cookie dough. Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl with a spatula.
Pam spray and line a quarter sheet pan with parchment or a Silpat. Plop the oat cookie dough in the center of the pan and with a spatula, spread it out until it is 1/4″ thick. The dough won’t end up covering the entire pan, this is okay. Bake the oat cookie for 15 minutes. Cool completely before using in the crack pie recipe.
To prepare the pie filling, mix the dry ingredients for the filling using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment on low speed. Be sure to keep your mixer on low speed during the entire process of preparing the filling; if you try to mix on any higher than a low speed, you will incorporate too much air in the following steps and your pie will not be dense and gooey – the essence of the crack pie. Add the melted butter to the mixer and paddle until all the dry ingredients are moist. Add the heavy cream and vanilla and mix until the white from the cream has completely disappeared into the mixture. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. Add the egg yolks to the mixer, paddling them in to the mixture just to combine. Be careful not to aerate the mixture. Use the filling immediately.
To assemble the pies, preheat the oven to 350°. Put the oat cookie, brown sugar and salt in the food processor and pulse it on and off until the cookie is broken down into a wet sand. (If you don’t have a food processor, you can fake it till you make it and crumble the oat cookie diligently with your hands.) Transfer the cookie crumbs to a bowl and, with your hands, knead the butter and ground cookie mixture until the contents of the bowl are moist enough to knead into a ball. If it is not moist enough to do so, gently melt an additional 1-1 1/2 tablespoons of butter and knead it into the oat crust mixture. Divide the oat crust evenly over 2- 10″ pie tins.
Using your fingers and the palm of your hand, press the oat cookie crust firmly into both 10-inch pie shells. Make sure the bottom and the walls of the pie shells are evenly covered. Use the pie shells immediately or, wrapped well in plastic, store the pie shells at room temperature for up to 5 days or in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
Place both pie shells on a sheet pan. Divide the crack pie filling evenly over both crusts (the filling should fill the crusts 3/4 way full) and bake at 350° for 15 minutes. During this time, the crack pie will still be very jiggly, but should become golden brown on top. At 15 minutes, open the oven door and reduce the baking temperature to 325°. Depending on your oven this will take 5-10 minutes – keep the pies in the oven during this process. When the oven temperature reads 325°, close the door and finish baking the pies for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, the pies should still be jiggly in the bull’s eye centers, but not in the outer center circle. If the pies are still too jiggly, leave them in the oven an additional 5 minutes.
Gently remove the baked pies from the oven and transfer to a rack to cool at room temperature. You can speed up the cooling process by transferring the pies to the fridge or freezer if you’re in a hurry. Freeze your pie for as little as 3 hours or up to overnight to condense the filling for a dense final product – the signature of a perfectly executed Crack Pie. Just before serving finish with a dusting of confectioners’ sugar.

Jill's notes:  Definitely go to Averie Cooks and read her notes.  I agree with all of them.  I would add that the crust is yummy but the filling is the crack part.  Save yourself 3-4 hours and just use a graham cracker crust.