Happy Easter!

Man oh man, do my teeth and stomach currently dislike me. They’re so over sugar-laden snacks that just NEED to be sampled. (Market research, right?) Even with the reprieve of my recently-shared Paleo Chocolate Cupcakes, they’re feeling quite disapproving.

Luckily, after this weekend, the Hallmark holidays take a breather for a minute. So I, and the rest of the five-year-old population of Portland, just HAD to indulge in all of the sweets I possibly could for Easter.

Pre-Easter, I was lucky enough to visit Tra’Renee Chambers and the team at Afternoon Live. So I brainstormed. I phoned a friend. I played the 50-50 game. And I asked the audience. The audience (thanks, Lori and Debbie!) was immensely helpful. With their recommendations, Easter Surprise Cupcakes were formulated. Inspired by the (sometimes polarizing) Peep, this dessert is so light and airy, you might feel like you’re floating away. Full video and recipe shared here.

Screen Shot 2017-04-16 at 9.45.40 PM

Hope everyone had a wonderful Easter holiday, and that you’re looking forward to an amazing week ahead.

Xo,
Jenna

Eggnog and a Champagne Cocktail

When I kicked off bubbles&sprinkles, I kicked it off with an aggressive bang. There were no introductory weeks of basic instructions around- ‘How to Bake Cupcakes in General’, ‘Smart Baking Tips’, or ‘Classic Cupcakes– Learning the Basics’. Instead I dove in with flavors like ‘Dark Chocolate Sour Cream’….like, week two. Coming in hot.

This means that retroactively I’m looking back at cupcakes I’ve made and realizing that where I’ve paired two or three dominant ingredients, I can focus on just one and really build the cupcake around that. So while 2013 featured Gingerbread Cupcakes with Eggnog Frosting… 2015 is all about just the Eggnog.

I had a jam-packed weekend of holiday parties and enjoyed each of them immensely. Sunday- a close girlfriend’s GORGEOUS family holiday party, hosted at Paragon, one of my favorite Portland restaurants. Saturday- my first Santacon experience. Good grief. Holiday debauchery at its absolute finest.

IMG_9953

Friday saw a potluck with some of my most favorite ladies and mentors that I used to work with at adidas. The cupcakes were for this special occasion. The lovely Lauren welcomed us into her stunning home and made sure that delicious food and drinks were aplenty. This included a Blackberry Rosemary Sparkler upon arrival. Not that she could have known it (although her telepathic skills have been known to be on point), but it was the perfect match to the cupcakes. Not too sweet, a nice hint of herb, tart and bubbly. No Champs this past week… a focus instead on a beautiful cocktail for your next bubbly night:

Blackberry Rosemary Sparkler:

  • 1 part blackberry simple syrup
  • 2 parts sparkling wine of your choice
  • Spring of rosemary

Easy-peasy. So delicious.

FullSizeRender[1]

^Some of the very best girls that I know.

Cupcakes (makes 12):

Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2 cups white flour
  • 1 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup egg nog
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1 tsp cinnamon

Frosting:

  • 16 oz confectioners sugar
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1/4 cup egg nog
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon

Combine ingredients and bake at 350 for 15 minutes. Whip frosting ingredients into a frenzy and frost cupcakes once cooled. Find awesome Christmas (holiday)-themed cupcake toppers and share. Or don’t.

IMG_9948.JPGHope everyone has a wonderful week, and if you’re celebrating- a very Merry Christmas!

Cheers,
Jenna

 

 

Luck of the Irish and Oregon Bubbles

I get to celebrate two of my favorite places in the world this week, Ireland and Oregon. St. Paddy’s day is always a fun day to enjoy and this year was no exception. Over the weekend I enjoyed Irish music and dancing at a local farmer’s market and ran my first 15k at the Portland Shamrock Run. Today I look forward to Guiness, corned beef and maybe a shot or two of Jameson at the local bar. Seeing as how my menu planned for the day does not include nearly enough sugar, today was definitely a good day for a goofy cupcake in honor of St. Paddy.

I went back and forth between a few fun options that could be worthy of the “Luck of the Irish” cupcake title; those not chosen shall remain in the vault for future years. I went with a Lucky Charm stuffed cupcake with green and gold glitter frosting.

SO much fun to make. I haven’t purchased Lucky Charms cereal in years. Whoever came up with the concept is a smartie pants. I picked out about 50 marshmellow charms and whipped them into my vanilla cupcake batter. I had no idea how they would bake but the cupcakes came out with technicolor rainbow bursts throughout. Seemed fitting enough. I went with a cream cheese-mallow glaze…which has a texture at mid point between buttercream frosting, glaze and Fluffernutter. A trip to Michael’s meant purchases of green glitter glaze and gold sparkle sprinkles (say that ten times fast) which were applied in a very Jackson Pollack fashion. Aesthetics weren’t really the object of this week…this was one to have fun with 🙂

Recipe (makes 12):

Cupcakes

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 stick butter
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 handfuls of Lucky Charms marshmallows

Frosting

  • 8 oz cream cheese
  • 2 oz marshmellow spread
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 splash heavy whipping cream
  • Green glitter glaze and gold sparkle sprinkles for garnish

Combine all cupcake ingredients and beat until smooth. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes. Whisk frosting ingredients until desired texture is achieved. Apply to cooled cupcakes and decorate as you please. Enjoy!

irish 1

irish 2

irish 3

This week’s bubbles hail from my birthday trip to Oregon’s wine country. Our last stop was at Dobbes Family Estate in Dundee. It was the perfect way to culminate our trip. We chatted with Joe Dobbes and his wife about their different varietals and the marketing behind them. The wines were delicious but when they mentioned the “Joe-secco”, I was over the moon. I purchased the 2011 and figured that this would be a fun weekend to crack it. I was not disapointed. It has notes of kiwi and toast, a little bit tropical. Since this week’s cupcake focused on texture instead of bold flavors, the sparkling wine really stands out.

secco 1

Hope everyone has a wonderful week. If you’re celebrating, enjoy a safe and happy St. Paddy’s Day!

Cheers,
Jenna