It’s been quite the whirlwind of a weekend for us here at Sweet and Stout! With our wedding rapidly approaching, we’ve been getting pretty busy taking care of all the fun little details that go along with planning such an event. We were also plenty busy this weekend doing cupcake and beer related activities!
On Friday evening we made a guest appearance at Spokane Real Deals and their Girls Night Out event. We sold some cupcakes, and got to talk with some really great people, including Rachelle and Kris, the owners. We also met Ginger of Peace, Love & Pearls, who does great work revamping vintage jewelry. Ginger actually inspired our idea for this week’s cupcake flavor, but I’ll get to that. To top it all off, we got to meet Dan, of Duo Brewing, who happened to be in Spokane this Sunday. We’ve been following Duo Brewing for a while now, so it was really awesome to meet half of the duo behind the beer. We are definitely looking forward to trying some of their beers in the near future.
Anyways, I know you all really came here to read about our cupcakes, so here they are:
That’s a chocolate covered potato chip on top of a chocolate cake, with chocolate frosting, of course! While I was talking to Ginger on Friday evening, she mentioned that she used to have a business that made chocolate covered potato chips. This sounded like such a tasty idea, I decided that we had to give it a try. Making them was quite easy, just melt some chocolate and dip in your favorite chip. Let me tell you, I’m really upset I haven’t tried this sooner in life. I’m sure they have no health benefits, whatsoever, but, they were the perfect balance of salty and sweet. Definitely worth trying.
For the cake we used Rogue Chocolate Stout, a deliciously rich chocolate stout, that paired fabulously with our chocolate cake. If you are into chocolate beers, I highly recommend you give this one a try. The roasted malt flavor combined with the chocolate is sweet and toasty, and there’s just a hint of bitterness that balances it out. For the frosting I used a regular cream cheese base, then just added the leftover melted chocolate that I had dipped the potato chips into. Looking back on the last year+ of this cupcake blog, I don’t think I’ve ever done just a chocolate cream cheese frosting. That’s almost hard to believe, considering how much I love chocolate. It was pretty much the tastiest chocolate frosting ever, and I will definitely incorporate it into more cupcake recipes! (Chocoholic-4-life)
The only thing that bothered me about this cupcake creation was that the part of the chip that was covered in chocolate got a little soft, not necessarily soggy, just not as crispy as I wanted it to be. I’m not sure what would be the fix for it, but I’m willing to eat plenty more until I figure it out. So, let us know what you think– would you try a chocolate covered potato chip (on a cupcake)?
- Jackie & Dylan
Try not to confuse these cupcakes with the Smoked Porter Maple Bacon Cupcakes we created last year. While these are very similar, I’ve modified the recipe in a new way so we can produce these cupcakes for sale. We needed to do a test run to make sure we meet the Department of Agriculture’s standards for the amount of bacon in our cupcake. With our current licensing, there can only be 2% of the cupcake’s weight in bacon. I know that doesn’t seem like a lot, so we were very careful to get our measurements right. Previously when we made bacon cupcakes there was bacon grease and bacon bits inside the cake, which was very tasty, but that would lead to us technically having too much bacon. So, we cut out the inside bacon and just garnished the top. I really think this will work!
Aside from all that technical stuff, these cupcakes were awesome! Last week I ordered a bottle of Rogue Ale’s Voodoo Donut Bacon Maple Ale. It arrived just in time for our brief weekend getaway to Bellingham to visit Dylan’s family over the St. Patrick’s day weekend. Despite being on vacation, we still planned on baking cupcakes, that’s how much we love our readers (and how much we love to bake cupcakes!).
The beer smelled distinctly like maple, and upon pouring myself a glass and taking a sip, I knew I was trying something very unique. It was definitely sweet, but there was also a smokey character to it that you could tell was from the applewood smoked bacon, and other smoked malts, used in the brewing process. I was definitely glad we had family around to share this bottle with. I used about 5/8 of a cup in the cake batter, and the rest we all drank while baking.
The cake by itself is basically a yellow cake flavored with maple syrup (100% pure) and molasses. After I made the batter and filled the cupcake pans, I placed them in the oven, which filled the house with a great maple scent. When they were done, I realized I may have put too much batter in, as they had generously expanded in the oven. I guess I’m just not used to their oven, but it was a nice change from using our toaster oven to make our blog experiments like we have been doing.
The maple cakes were then crowned with a generous amount of cream cheese frosting that was flavored with just a little bit more maple syrup. They were then sprinkled with a few freshly cooked bacon bits and that really brought the cupcakes together. The flavor of the entire thing really tasted just like the beer! Now the only thing I’m not sure of, when we start producing these for sale, is what kind of beer we’re going to use. Sadly, the Voodoo Bacon Maple Ale is a limited release and it wasn’t exactly inexpensive to get a bottle of it to our house. (I had to order it online, and the shipping cost about as much as the beer itself) I think we’ll probably use a smoked porter like we did in our previous bacon cupcakes, or maybe on our next trip to the beer store I’ll find something else that sounds good. Do you have any suggestions on what beer might go best with these cupcakes?
Special thanks to Martin (Dylan’s dad) who let me use his photography studio to take pictures of the cakes this week. (I’d also like to thank him for the lesson in Lightroom, I’ve always just used Photoshop.) We hope everyone had a safe and happy St. Patrick’s day celebration this weekend! We loved being able to spend it here in Bellingham, the parade was great and the beer afterwards at Boundary Bay Brewery was even better. Cheers!
- Jackie & Dylan
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!
What happens when you take a flavor that all north westerners truly love and decide to turn it into a beer? You get Rogue Brewery’s Mocha Porter. This beer is a wonderful blend of malt and hops that leaves you with a creamy mocha flavor that stays with you long after you put that first taste down. A little history of the beer from Rogue states that the: “Mocha Porter was once known as New Porter, in honor of the town of Newport, Oregon and home of Rogue Ales.” They also say the beer was made to be: “dedicated to the chocolate lover in each of us.” The Mocha Porter per Rogue Brewery is said to pair well with desserts and that’s exactly what we did.
Taking this Mocha Porter, some instant coffee and our talent of creating wonderful cupcakes, we made these tasty looking treats. Combining what would be a seemingly innocent idea of a mocha cupcake and adding this wonderfully flavorful beer to the mix made these moist and intoxicating treats. After we had the batter mixed up we both tasted it and decided that we needed to come up with a frosting that matched the richness of the cupcake, so we turned to our liquor collection.
After much consideration and debate we decided to really play up the coffee flavor that the cupcakes where hinting at. The cupcakes themselves tasted much like a chocolate coffee cake with the robust flavor of the Mocha Porter peaking through the cracks, so how could we boost the coffee flavor? We decided that the best way to do this was to make a frosting that was a mix of Kahlua and Bailey’s Irish Cream. As a final touch we added coffee beans to the tops of the cupcakes as a garnish. We could not be happier with how these came out. Hopefully you found these pictures as mouth watering as we found the cupcakes to be.