New Year!

My first blog entry – talk about intimidating.

So I created this blog over a month ago, and it’s just been sitting around on the world wide web, completely blank. I’ve wanted to start one for ages, took me about a year to even create one due to not knowing what to call it, and now that I have one, I’ve been living in fear of what my first post would be – start out simple? Something holiday-ish? Maybe just a picture—those speak for themselves, but I have a separate set of fears regarding my photography skills. Hm.

The reason I started this blog is because I love baking, and I wanted to create something that documents what I’ve baked and when. Like my personal baking diary. I do bake more than just cake, but cake is one of those things that have special connection with, it’s something I crave, and I will never turn it down. I like all kinds of cake—birthday cake, cheesecake, cupcakes… pancakes? Sure, why not. I actually will never turn down anything in the dessert category, so please offer.

Welcome to my blog–feel free to nudge me to keep this thing going! Here’s a cupcake to start:

This is a POM Velvet Cupcake with pomegranate cream cheese frosting. The cake was fluffy, but the pomegranate taste was too subtle–you can’t tell the flavor unless you were told. I also added pomegranate seeds into the batter, giving it a little crunch, and everyone was a huge fan of the pomegranates sprinkled on top that burst when eaten.

POM Velvet Cupcakes w POM Cream Cheese Frosting
Recipe from POM Wonderful

Makes about 30 cupcakes

For POM Velvet Cupcakes
2-1/2 cups POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice
16 oz (2 cups) granulated sugar
14 oz (1-1/2 cups + 4 tbsp) unsalted butter, room temperature
4 large eggs
1-1/2 cups buttermilk
2 tbsp white vinegar
2 tsp vanilla extract
15 oz (3 cups+5 tbsp) all-purpose flour
1-1/2 oz (5 tbsp) cocoa powder
3/4 oz (1 tbsp+1 tsp) baking soda
pinch salt
1/4 cup heavy cream

For POM Cream Cheese Frosting
1-1/2 cups POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice
4 oz (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
8 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
14oz (3-1/2 cups) powdered sugar

1 cup arils from 1-2 large POM Wonderful Pomegranates, garnish

POM Velvet Cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350F, reduce the pomegranate juice, over low heat, down to 1/2 cup. Place sugar and soft butter in the bowl of an electric mixer with the paddle attachment, cream on medium-high speed, until the mixture is pale yellow and fluffy. Turn the speed down to low and add the eggs in one at a time, in a separate bowl, combine the buttermilk, pomegranate juice reduction, white vinegar and vanilla extract. Then slowly add half of this to the mixer, combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt, and then sift at least two times until well mixed. Add half of this to the mixer, add the remaining half of the liquids to the mixer, and then the remaining dry ingredients, finishing off with the heavy cream. Beat just until combined. Fill cupcake liners until 3/4 full, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Allow the pan to cool slightly, and then remove cupcakes to a wire rack to cool fully. Once the cupcakes are cooled completely, they can be iced with the pomegranate cream cheese frosting and topped with fresh pomegranate arils.

POM Cream Cheese Frosting: Reduce the pomegranate juice, over low heat, down to 1/2 cup. Allow to cool. Place butter into electric mixer bowl with paddle attachment and cream on medium-high speed for 1 minute, add the cream cheese and continue to mix for 2 more minutes. Turn the speed down to low and slowly add in the powdered sugar and the pomegranate juice reduction, mix until the sugar is fully combined. Remove icing from the mixer and place into a piping bag with a round or star tip.

Happy New Year! Goodbye 2009, you were a crazy year, let’s see how 2010 goes.

– Ai


1 Response to “New Year!”

  1. 1 sunny April 1, 2010 at 8:29 pm

    yuuuuuummy!!! i remember biting into these when you brought some down to LA. i loved everything about it! the moist cake, the sweet but not too sweet cream cheese flavored frosting… i still remember biting into them. too bad i had to share them!! hahahah

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