Mini Champagne Cupcakes

2012 is coming to a close and as it does, I take the time today to reflect and be grateful. What a posh year it has been, full of special moments like my first year of blogging, the welcoming of my 2nd daughter, sweet milestones, delicious treats, new friends and fabulous celebrations.

And as I think back and bid farewell, I do so with a toast in the form of a mini cupcake! A champagne cupcake with champagne swiss meringue buttercream that is.

If you love bubbly like I do you will truly enjoy this cupcake because the champagne flavor really comes through, plus the buttercream is light and fluffy and not too sweet to make this a festive treat for any special celebration.

champagne cupcakes

Mini Champagne Cupcakes

Ingredients/Supplies

24 mini cupcake liners
Mini cupcake pan

3/4 Cup All purpose flour
3/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup butter (or coconut spread)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1 and a half egg whites
1/2 cup favorite champagne
Lemon zest from 1/2 a lemon (optional)

(this recipe makes just enough for 24 mini cupcakes, simply double the ingredients for full size cupcakes.)

Instructions
Preheat oven to 350
Place liners in your mini muffin tin pan.
Mix together flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl and set aside.
Beat butter and sugar in a mixing bowl until fluffy.
Add vanilla and beat in egg white.
Beat in dry mixture and champagne in thirds alternating each time (start and finish with dry mixture).

Teaspoon batter into liners and bake for roughly 10 minutes until a toothpick comes put clean.

Champagne Swiss Meringue Buttercream

I used to be afraid of this icing but discovered that its easier to make than expected. It takes making it to realize this. Now I use it every time I need bake a cake or cupcakes.The meringue is the probably the most difficult part, but well worth the difficulty! The final result is dreamy and delish!!

Ingredients:
4 egg whites
3/4 Cup Sugar
1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks) cut into tablespoons or vegan butter
A few tablespoons of champagne to taste.

Instructions
Whisk egg whites and sugar in a bowl over a double boiler until sugar has completely dissolved. (Rub between your fingers until mixture is free of grit.)
Once mixture has reached 120 degrees, Transfer egg and sugar mixture into bowl of stand mixer making sure no condensation from the double boiler gets into the egg whites (can stop your meringue from forming.)
Whip eggs with whisk attachment until soft peaks form. (about 12 minutes)
Switch to paddle attachment and mix in butter one tablespoon at a time.
Mix past the curdled looking stage, until light and fluffy.
Add your champagne 1 tablespoon at a time. (I used 3 tablespoons for a delicate flavor.)

Once cupcakes have fully cooled, pipe or spread the buttercream on top.

Decorate with festive sprinkles and enjoy.

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Now I raise a glass…or a cupcake rather to my followers and readers. Those who have commented and enjoyed my posts enough to like and share throughout the year. I truly appreciate each and every one of you and wish you all the very best in 2013.

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Have a safe and posh new years celebration.

Cheers!!!

Cupcake Recipe Adapted from: 20 something cupcakes.
Frosting Recipe adapted from Food Network.

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NYE Inspiration

Christmas is officially over and we are now just a few days away from ringing in the new year! Do you have big plans for the holiday? Usually my hubby and I just have a quiet celebration at home, but this year one of my best girlfriends is home from the East Coast and we’re celebrating with a night on the town. This is somewhat of a big deal for me as I can barely remember the last time we were able to get out for an evening without the girls.

Bring on the champagne and the confetti!

If you haven’t made plans yet, here’s a little last minute NYE inspiration to get you in party mode.

nye inspiration

Consider a small celebration at home with a few of your closest girlfriends. Perhaps a color scheme of gold and silver with pops of tiffany blue. Always timeless.

And If you’re still exhausted from Christmas and not interested in cooking, have a potluck or byoa/b style party.

A nye favor in the form of a champagne lollie would not only be cute but delish as well, or say cheers with these gorge icon candles from Z gallerie.

When in doubt decorate with sparkle…and don’t forget to serve your favorite champagne and toast as the clock strikes midnight!

Happy planning everyone!

I’m off to bake mini cupcakes. Be sure to check back soon for the recipe!

xo

Source: Lollies, Kate Spade Stationary, Sparkle Twine, Glitter Garland, Candle

Holiday Wishes

Christmas is finally here, and although it has been an extremely busy month for us, we always find it important to take time to enjoy the little things. Whether its a big smile or laugh from our 7 month old, a silly statement from our oldest daughter, or the two of them just being themselves, it is the simplicity in these experiences that matter most. Like the moments they enjoyed in front of the tree the other morning. Not surprisingly they didn’t last long. My youngest had another agenda..places to go and mischief to find, but I was fortunate to have help from big sister in order to sneak in a few good shots…

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Moments like this are what this time of year is all about and my wish to all of you is a holiday filled with the very same!

Check back soon for more posh.
xo

Cranberry Vanilla Bean Mimosas

Christmas is on Tuesday and unfortunately I’m a bit under the weather but that won’t stop me from enjoying a wonderful celebration with my loved ones. This year my husband and I will be hosting our usual group of family members for an afternoon of good food and good laughs and I’m looking forward to every minute of it. One of the drinks that will be on our holiday menu is the Cranberry Vanilla Bean Mimosa. I came across the recipe a few years back and have loved it ever since. The cranberry juice adds a tart and refreshing twist and the vanilla beans add a slightly sweet and smooth finish, making this beverage perfect for a holiday toast!

Make it on Christmas Eve so its ready to serve on Christmas Day.

Cranberry Vanilla Mimosa

Cranberry Vanilla Bean Mimosas

Ingredients
Favorite sparkling wine
1 bottle of cranberry juice
2.5 vanilla beans
lemon wedge and 1/4 cup white sugar for rimming glass.

cranberry vanilla bean mimosa

Instructions
Pour entire bottle of cranberry juice into pitcher.
Slit 2 vanilla beans (do not scrape) and add to cranberry juice. Soak overnight.
Slice and scrape the half remaining vanilla bean and mix with 1/4 cup of sugar.
Rim champagne glass in lemon and then vanilla sugar.
Fill the glass half full with vanilla cranberry juice (pour through a strainer)
Top with your favorite champagne/sparkling wine.
Garnish with extra vanilla beans or cranberries (optional)

Toast and enjoy!!

Cranberry vanilla bean mimosas

A holiday cheers to all of you!
xo

recipe adapted from: Epicurious

Pink Peppermint Bark

When I think of colors to associate with posh…pink comes to mind. And when I think of Christmas and my favorite holiday treats, peppermint & chocolate top the list. Put them together and what do you get? A sweet holiday goodie that’s delish, pretty, and for your convenience very simple to make. Honestly, all you need is a microwave or pot of boiling water to melt the chocolate, and then a pan to cool it on. No special baking skills necessary. In fact, if you have little ones you could request their help too. My 3 year old daughter truly enjoyed assisting me today. She unwrapped all the kisses by herself and added the finishing sprinkles…or posh dust as we like to call it.

And after the bark was chilled and ready to eat…(currently vegan so only a tiny nibble) I discovered that they have quite a similar taste quality to those Pepperidge Farms Meltaway Mints that I’ve loved since I was a child. And later when I photographed them, they started to remind me of those Mother’s pink and white circus cookies I use to eat when I was young. Random, but interesting nonetheless. The holiday season has a way of doing that…bringing back memories from my childhood, which have somehow transformed into new traditions that I share with my husband and children today.

Pink peppermint bark - holiday

Pink Peppermint Bark

Ingredients/Supplies

6 oz quality white chocolate (I use Bakers brand) (1st layer)

1 bag of Candy Cane holiday hershey kisses (2nd layer)

Festive sprinkles

parchment paper

pink peppermint bark - holiday

Directions

Place parchment paper in an 8×8 square pan and set aside.

Unwrap white chocolate and place in a heatproof bowl. Place bowl over a pot of boiling water, (or you can microwave in 30 second intervals stirring each time until melted.)

Meanwhile, unwrap entire bag of candy cane hershey kisses and place in a separate heatproof bowl.

Once white chocolate has melted, pour into 8×8 inch pan and immediately place in the fridge (layer 1). Allow to cool for 15 minutes or until almost set.

While white chocolate is cooling, place the bowl of hershey kisses over the double boiler and stir until melted. (This is when you’ll see the hershey’s transform from red and white to a gorgeous and posh pink.)

Remove chilled white chocolate from fridge and pour pink chocolate evenly over white chocolate layer.

Dust with festive sprinkles (I used holiday non-pariels)

Immediately place back in the fridge until fully set (about 1 hour.)

Once chilled place bark on a cutting board and cut into pieces.

Keep cool until ready to serve.

peppermint bark ingredients

Now you can be selfish and keep these all to yourself, or you can spread the holiday posh and give them away like I am. They make a great last minute holiday gift.

pink peppermint bark - holiday

Either way, enjoy and remember to check back soon for another dose of holiday posh.

I also made some grasshopper bark from the Brown Eyed Baker which I’m packaging up and gifting to family and friends. It is incredible! Click here to make it now.

National Blogging Day of Remembrance

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Joining my fellow bloggers in a day of silence, for every individual affected by the tragedy in Conneticut.

Holiday-gram

It has been an extremely busy week here at home and with Christmas only 9 days away there is still plenty left to accomplish. Luckily my oldest daughter is done with preschool and dance class until the new year so I’ll have more time coming up to finish my list of holiday to dos. By the time I get it all done, Christmas will be over, but I love this time of year nonetheless. My oldest daughter is now 3 and this seems to be the first year that she truly understands the holiday. Just seeing her face light up makes all this busyness completely worth it and since this is my 7 month old’s first Christmas this is certainly a special year for us.

Last week we focused on getting our home holiday ready. Picking out the perfect tree which involved us going to a local tree farm and cutting down our own. This is a long loved family tradition my hubby and I started even before our girls were born. We also decorated our home with old and new Christmas decorations, got shopping out of the way, holiday cards addressed and ready for mailing, homemade goodies prepped and ready for gifting…is this starting to sound like a Christmas song to you, or is it just me? Well speaking of songs, having my favorite holiday music playing in the background is the perfect way to get me in the Christmas spirit, especially when listening to my old vinyl. But my highlight of the week by far had to be the matinee viewing of the nutcracker with my oldest daughter. Some much needed Mommy/daughter time, plus a stunning and mesmerizing performance that was the perfect finish to our hectic holiday week, with Instagram there to capture it all.

Instagram-holiday

I have more Christmas posts coming soon, including a few simple and last minute recipes like the grasshopper bark seen above. Be sure to check back in for your dose of holiday posh.

p.s. click on the camera icon to follow me on instagram.

xo