Sunday, April 22, 2012

Light Chocolate-Chip Mocha Muffins

Since we've been working out and watching what we eat for the past four months, I haven't been baking as much. The temptation is just too great and we really don't need the extra calories. Also, I'm not into baking healthy. I like real ingredients such as sugar and butter way too much to compromise. After I found this recipe in Cooking Light , I decided to give it a whirl since it contained real ingredients: no fake sugar or fat substitutes. I'm so glad I did since these muffins were delicious! They had the perfect amount of coffee-chocolate flavor, were sweet enough to satisfy any sweet tooth, and were low in calories—about 200 calories apiece.

Light Chocolate Chip-Mocha Muffins
adapted from Cooking Light, January/February 2012 issue

2/3 cup milk
5 tablespoons butter, melted

2 tablespoons strong brewed coffee
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 egg (beaten)
2 cups flour

2/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon coffee grounds
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
non-stick baking spray

Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line a muffin tin with 12 paper liners. Lightly spray cups with non-stick baking spray.

Combine milk, butter, brewed coffee, vanilla, and egg in a medium bowl.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, coffee grounds, baking powder, and salt. Stir in chocolate chips. Make a well in the center of flour mixture, add liquid mixture, and stir just until moist.
Fill the paper liners about 2/3 full and bake for 18–20 minutes.
Remove from pan immediately and cool on a wire rack.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Tequila Rose Cupcakes

I'm not one of those foo-foo drink girls. Give me a beer and I'm happy. As long as it's not a Miller Lite or Natty Ice. I prefer a Michelob Light or a Blue Moon. (I have to try those Blue Moon cupcakes I've seen floating around the Internet.) When we go out, there are usually shots involved. In my day, I was able to down multiple shots, but not anymore. I like a shot that tastes good. And my favorite shot is Tequila Rose. For those of you who have never had Tequila Rose, it's a strawberry cream liquor and it's heavenly. For my birthday, I decided to pay homage to my favorite shot and whip up these Tequila Rose cupcakes. And guess what, they were wonderful, just like the shot.

Tequila Rose Cupcakes
1 stick butter (room temperature)
2/3 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 and 1/2 cups flour
1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup Tequila Rose

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a cupcake tin with 12 cupcake liners.
In a bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt and set aside.
In another bowl, beat together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. 
Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla extract.
Turn mixer to low and alternately add flour mixture and Tequila Rose in three additions, ending with flour.
Fill the cupcake liners about 2/3 full and bake for 18–20 minutes.
Cool completely on a wire rack and top with your favorite icing.

Tequila Rose Buttercream
2 sticks butter (room temperature)
4 - 6 cups powdered sugar
3 tablespoons Tequila Rose
1 - 2 tablespoons water (if needed)

Cream the butter. Add powdered sugar one cup at a time and Tequila Rose and water until desired consistency is reached and beat well.