After last week’s oven failure, I was a bit worried about how we would be baking cupcakes this weekend. When I got in the kitchen this morning, I crossed my fingers and fired up the oven, just to see if it would go. It has been working randomly, but hardly predictable. Lucky for us, the oven felt like cooperating!
For this recipe, I took our basic orange cake recipe and just added in some cocoa powder to make it chocolate. I also prepared a semi-sweet chocolate ganache ahead of time, and added a bit of orange zest to make it more interesting. I’m actually surprised we haven’t done this flavor sooner, orange + chocolate = one of my most favorite things. (It’s right up there next to pumpkin.)
For the beer, I went with a Belgian style golden ale, another one from Dick’s Brewing Company, called Silk Lady. This beer definitely has a strong citrus flavor, and was a perfect match to the fresh orange juice and zest in our cake recipe. We try to avoid using the same brewing company 2 weeks in a row, but the beer really did pair well with the cake.
In other news, we hit 400+ fans on our facebook page last week! To celebrate that, I sent Dylan out on a cupcake adventure Friday to give away some cupcakes. I had to work that day, but I think Dylan enjoyed making the rounds. He made stops at Arbor Crest Winery (did you know they’re going to start making their own beer soon?), Manito Tap House, The Hop Shop, and Jones Radiator. All cool places to check out, if you’re in Spokane, of course. (We’re looking for a few more places to carry our cupcakes, so if you’re reading this and you want to sell some beer cupcakes at your shop – give us a call!)
We hope you all had a terrific Thanksgiving this past week, and hopefully you survived black Friday without too many traumas! Thanks for stopping by to check out this week’s cupcake.
- Jackie & Dylan
In the spirit of fall (the best season), we present to you, these cranberry orange cupcakes made with Southern Tier Brewing’s Harvest Ale. We have been looking forward to trying this beer, and have yet to be disappointed by Southern Tier. This beer is perfect for fall! It was also perfect for our recipe this weekend.
One of my favorite (besides pumpkin) flavors of fall is cranberry. It’s tart but sweet flavor, is great in desserts, and complimentary to a turkey dinner for thanksgiving. Orange is great paired up with cranberry, so we used our orange cake recipe (with a few modifications) to make this tasty treat.
The night before we baked these, I took some dried cranberries and minced them, then placed them in some orange juice to soak over night. When I pulled them out of the refrigerator, they had absorbed a lot of the orange flavor nicely, and I added them into the batter. I also included some of the cranberry flavored orange juice to help carry through the flavor in the cake.
For the frosting, we did a light whipped cream and garnished with a few cranberries for extra flavor. These turned out exactly how I wanted them to taste. A creamy orange cranberry cake. The bite that you get from the Harvest Ale, partnered with the cranberries, really gives these cupcakes some personality. They would definitely make a great addition to a holiday meal this fall. I’m tempted to keep the leftovers here at home, rather than take the extras into work!
I don’t know how your week has been, but ours over here had been pretty awesome! Thursday night, Dylan and I met up with the owners of Brews on Washington, a new downtown bar and coffee joint. We discussed cupcakes and beer, ate cupcakes and drank beer, and talked about the future possibilities of Sweet and Stout going commercial and becoming a viable business. Great fun was had by all, and now we are uber excited for the future of our beer cupcakes.
In celebration of said awesomeness, I feel it appropriate to share another recipe! We made a few different flavors of cupcakes to take over to Brews, 2 of which (Pineapple Coconut & Chocolate Salted Caramel) have had their recipes posted on our blog, so I figured, why not one more?
This one is for an orange flavored cupcake using Rogue’s Somer Orange Honey Ale, a great beer for summer and is quite delicious! I also have to say that I had some of Rogue’s Hazelnut Brown Nectar last night (on tap) and it was so good! I definitely will be developing a hazelnut cupcake in the near future with that one, so make sure you check back to see.
Anyways, on to the Orange Honey Ale Cupcakes!
- 2/3 cup butter or margarine, room temperature
- 1 1/3 cups white sugar
- 2/3 cup Rogue Somer Honey Ale
- 1.5 tablespoons orange juice
- 1.5 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon orange zest (grated orange peel)
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- In a large bowl, combine butter and sugar with electric mixer until fluffy. Add beer, juices and peel; beat on high until mixed well. (it may appear curdled looking, don’t worry, it’s okay!)
- Add eggs, 1 at a time, and beat well after each with mixture.
- Sift together flour, baking powder and salt, add to batter slowly while mixing. Mix well.
- Pour into cupcake tins (lined with cupcake papers). Bake at 375 degrees for 20 – 25 minutes. Check if they’re done by placing a toothpick in the center, if it comes out clean, they are done!
- Now for the frosting. You can really do whatever frosting you like on these, I’ve had them with a few different kinds. I bet an orange flavored cream cheese frosting would be really good. Here’s a recipe for an orange icing. Feel free to garnish each cupcake with a little slice of orange just for fun.
1 1/4 cups powdered sugar (+ maybe a little extra)
1 teaspoon orange zest
2 to 3 tablespoons orange juice
Whisk together powdered sugar, zest and 2 tablespoons of juice until smooth. If too thick add more juice, if too wet add more powdered sugar. Mix until desired consistency is reached.
Dip cupcake into icing, add orange garnish (if desired), eat and enjoy!
Sometimes I want Dylan’s job… official taste tester of all my cupcake creations. These cupcakes went quick and so did the beer. This time we opted for a Great Divide Brewing Company Hades Belgian Style Ale. The beer was pretty good, and had that classic Belgian style taste. I’ve had Belgian style beers with an orange slice in the glass, so I figured why not try an orange cupcake?
This recipe was a little different from the last two in that I actually had to modify a recipe in order to incorporate the beer. The recipe I found called for 3/4 cup of orange juice, so I just made a substitution. I ended up adding more and using a full cup of beer as the batter seemed slightly too thick.
Instead of a frosting, I opted for an orange icing. Icing is fairly simple and while I did add orange zest to it, the main flavor of the icing was powdered sugar. I’m not complaining, I could eat powdered sugar all day. The icing was light enough though that it didn’t take away from the flavor of the cupcake.
These cupcakes were delicious. Regrettably I can’t pass some out to you over the interwebs, but I think you would agree. They were soft with a subdued orange-Belgian flavor that left you wanting more and I couldn’t resist. After the photoshoot I sat down with my glass of beer and made short work of these.
I would definitely make these again.