Have an Awesome Autumn!

Even though summer still lingers here in Eastern Washington, Autumn is on my mind.  Here are a few awesome Autumn inspired pieces from some amazing artists…

Adorable little pumpkins by Bobbi Lewin

 

Autumn Leaves Paperweight by AuberryGirl

 

And, of course, one of my favorite parts about Autumn… Halloween!  Here is one of my Halloween necklaces that I currently have on sale in my Etsy Shop.

Halloween Interchangable Bottle Cap Necklace

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Well, Hello!

I’ve been blog-negligent again.  I suck and I’m sorry… :*(

However, to make it up to you all, I have decided to share a recipe for the most amazing cupcakes ever to come out of my kitchen. 

I have always been a sucker for “Samoas”.  If you don’t know what Samoas are, they are chocolate, caramel, coconut goodness wrapped up in a donut shaped cookie.  They are like cookie crack, and they are pushed by some of the most dangerous dealers… Girl Scouts.

The other day on Pinterest (if you don’t know what “Pinterest” is yet, check it out) I ran across a recipe for Samoas Cupcakes.  I nearly pee’d myself with excitement.  I mean, cupcakes… great!  Samoas…. awesome!!  Samoas Cupcakes…. OMGosh!  Honey, catch me while I pass out!!  Needless to say, I was ecstatic 🙂

So, please, take this token of apology and make these babies up ASAP!  They will not disappoint.

SAMOAS CUPCAKES

Aren't they pretty?!?

(adapted from The Novice Chef)

For the Cupcakes

  • 2 cups  sugar
  • 1-3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons coconut flavoring
  • 1 cup coconut, packed
  • 1 cup boiling water

1. Preheat oven to 350° and line 24 muffin tins with cupcake liners.

2. In a large bowl, combine sugar, flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

3. Add in eggs, milk, oil, vanilla, and coconut flavoring.  Mix well.

4. Fold in coconut, then add boiling water.  (Batter will be very thin)

5. Pour batter into muffin tins, filling each cup no more than 3/4 full.  Bake at 350° for 22-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Let cool for several minutes, but then remove cupcakes from tins on cool on a wire rack.

For the Salted Caramel Buttercream

  • 2 sticks butter, softened
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup caramel topping
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt

1. Cream butter until fluffy.

2. Add in vanilla extract, salt and caramel topping.  Slowly add the powdered sugar into your mixture.  If icing is still too thin after 4 cups, add a bit more powdered sugar.   You want it light and fluffy, not too dense.

3. Wait until cupcakes are completely cool, and use a pastry bag to ice the cupcakes.

To top the Cupcakes

  • 1 cup toasted coconut
  • dark chocolate chips (I used Kroger brand “chunks”)
  • caramel topping for drizzling

1. Toast coconut by placing shredded coconut on a cookie sheet and baking it on 300 for about 15-20 minutes.  Mix/turn the coconut every 5 minutes to make sure it toasts evenly. 

2. Once the coconut is toasted and has cooled, place a dab on the top of each cupcake (about a tbsp).

3. Place 3 (or so) dark chocolate chips on top of the coconut, pushing them down slightly to “stick” them into the frosting.

4. Drizzle caramel topping on to the top of the cupcake.

Now eat.  Enjoy.  Repeat.