Monday, September 3, 2007

Liquor + Cake

Cupcakes and Cocktails; it's not only adorable in its alliterative nature, these two lovelies embody some of my favorite things. They're delicious, tiny and nice to look at. The only trouble with these things is that you can only have so much of either one before you run into trouble. The only solution -- miniature cupcakes and miniature cocktails! Over the weekend I had my friends over and orchestrated a five course meal of decadence that revolved entirely around cake and booze. In order to maximize cake and liquor consumption I miniaturized both and created a tasting menu fit for a hedonist.

You can find miniature cupcake tins and miniature cupcake liners at bakery suppliers and some craft stores (Michael's carries these things). You can also find these things at stores with a large kitchen equipment department like Bed Bath and Beyond. For my party I served a drink that coordinated with each cake. In order to make the drink size appropriate for the cakes I scored some votive candle holders at Target for about 50 cents a piece that looked like oversized shot glasses.

I am going to apologize now for my laziness, I do not feel like typing up every recipe I used for my party. I made 5 kinds of cake and 5 kinds of cocktails. That's 10 recipes. If you're considering a cocktails and cupcakes party of your own there's no real need to get hung up on my recipes any way, just take away from this post the concept of a cupcakes and cocktails party and use your favorite recipes. If there's something you're really dying to know how to make I can give you details, but your favorite cupcakes will be just as good as mine I'm sure. One thing to keep in mind however is that little cupcakes bake very quickly. Most of my cakes needed only 8 minutes. Keep a very close eye on your oven.

For the first course I served chocolate cupcakes with a homemade cocoa hazelnut frosting, topped with crushed hazelnuts, chocolate dust and a raspberry for a pop of tartness. I paired this cake with Kahlua and cream. (Vegans: I used soy creamer so if you are also a vegan, that is the ingredient I recommend.)

Next up: Berries and cream layer cake with champagne frosting. I replaced the liquid content of a buttercream frosting recipe with bubbly. Then I baked 24 mini mixed berry cupcakes and stacked them in 2 layer cakes (gluing them together with frosting). I topped each cake with a generous amount of frosting and a sliced strawberry. I served this cake with a mixed drink consisting of equal parts champagne, Stoli Raspberry and raspberry schnapps.

After the berry cakes, I served cherry cordial cupcakes with apricot hot toddies. My cupcakes were chocolate with a cream and cherry center. I topped each cake with chocolate ganache and a cherry from a jar of cherry pie filling. I made my hot toddies with apricot brandy flavored black tea, lemon juice, honey (vegans: use agave) and a shot of brandy.

Following the cordials came the tiramisu and coffee. I made the tiramisu using the Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World recipe and I served with with a coffee cocktail that consisted of cream, coffee, Stoli Vanilla, and Amaretto.

I capped off the meal with chai tea cupcakes topped with vanilla buttercream frosting and a dusting of cinnamon. I served these cakes with an apple cider and spiced rum cocktail.


Browners said...

I'm so impressed. This looks and sounds amazing.

Love the rest of your blog too... I'm adding a link to you guys on my blog...

Heather said...

This was a fabulous party. We had a great time.

Ivy Arts said...

So cool, so delicious. So much more elegant than the Seven Layer S'more Flambé that I made this past weekend (see my blog for details

Michael Natkin said...

Hah! That looks like good fun. I just had to leave a comment because (1) you guys describe yourself as vegetarian foodies, which was the name of my blog until I recently renamed it and (2) I just did a savory caramelized pear cupcake with a blue cheese frosting that would be a fun course in this kind of menu. Rock on you guys!

jess (of Get Sconed!) said...

I wish I had been there.

Insomniac Chef said...

"I just had to leave a comment because (1) you guys describe yourself as vegetarian foodies..."
The food snob scene mostly refuses to admit that you can be a veg foodie. Meanwhile most meat eaters don't know their shallots from their scallions and are happy to eat big macs every night. I look forward to watching your blog, Michael.

Tony R said...

The cakes and cocktails look fabulous. However, I balked a bit when I read this: "Meanwhile most meat eaters don't know their shallots from their scallions and are happy to eat big macs every night."

Um...who's the snob? As a former veg and a veg-friendly omnivore (my girlfriend is veg, so I usually eat veg at home), I'm rather taken aback by such a statement. MOST meat eaters? Really?


Insomniac Chef said...

I didn't say all meat-eaters do not know anything about food, but you have to consider that the average person is omnivorous and happy eating at places like TGI Fridays and McDonalds. (Otherwise they wouldn't be so successful.) You can't really be the kind of person who takes food seriously and consider that kind of thing worth dining out for.

marias23 said...

How awesome! I love your mini cupcakes and their cocktail pairings. I wish I was at the party, man!

karin said...

Everything was delicious – each course became my new favorite!

Happy birthday, Matt!

Caty said...

That's such a great idea, it looks like so much fun!

Hannah said...

Would you be interested in teaching a baking class --in your kitchen or ours, for reasonable fee?
No need to prepare a formal lesson; I'd simply take notes while you walk me through a few of your fabulous recipes.
Please let me know at this email address:
Baltimore, MD

Ryan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Vincenzo said...

What a nice blog, let me say that you have what some people call: ''writer's wood'', no really,
this could be the best thing i've ever read since that last post of ''Tabasco's Grill'' by Henry Townsend, i can't wait
for another masterpiece of yours!!!! =)

Vincenzo Aquafresca (
4853 Tully Street
Dearborn, MI 48126

Jennifer said...

Bloody brilliant idea!