This particular baking episode was brought on by me making a pumpkin pie for my aptmate's "Oktoberfest" celebration - no alcohol, just fondue and sweets. I followed the Paula Deen recipe that has rave reviews. I must say..I got really freaked out. If you know me, then you know that I'm not the greatest of bakers, no matter how much I love doing it. Usually my stuff comes out weird. So when I saw how liquidy that pumpkin pie filling was I really panicked and was close to crying for fear of having ruined an event. The filling was also magically 2x the amount that I needed, which really confused me since I followed the recipe to a T, except maybe skimping out 1 oz of pumpkin mash (they only come in 15 oz cans!). The result- something my aptmate called "Pumpkin Pudding". I was horrified to say the least. I dumped the rest of the filling straight into cupcake tins and baked them alone. BUT, the next day, after refrigeration, I tried the pumpkin pie for breakfast, and it was absolutely delicious!!! I love it so much more than the storebought pies because there's a strong pumpkin flavor there. I could probably do without so much sugar, but still, sooo much better than storebought. I read the reviews online and many people say that there was a lot more filling than needed. Supposedly this is because of the different depths of pans that everyone's using. Apparently the store pie pans that have the crusts in them already are much more shallow. Whew! So it wasn't me!! And the pudding texture- well this is supposed to be a lighter pie, but now I regret not fighting my aptmate harder. I know that the pie needs time to set, but she just wanted to dig right in to a warm pie. GOSH! Making it seem all like my fault.
So that's what started my pumpkin pie craving all up again. And now I want to bake it again, except this time, to make it less liquidy and a denser pie, I might cut out the half and half, or just use half, cut out the butter (it's pumpkin mash, it won't be too dry), and maybe a couple eggs. And the attempt after that, I might even cut out the cream cheese (gasp!). But I do prefer a denser, less custard like pie, plus cream cheese is a lot of Calories.
But onto my baking expedition yesterday. I got a hankering for baking cupcakes, that coupled with my strong desire to still try out the chocolate icing from Cakes to Celebrate Love and Life drove me to madness- well almost. So I pulled out a box of Duncan Hines yellow cake mix- it was on sale this week- and went to work. Making cupcakes from scratch is a little more time consuming, and it was late, so I just went with the box to make sure. Plus my roommate loves yellow cake.
The result? I had to make the chocolate icing with granulated sugar cuz I forgot I used all the powdered sugar up last time...I tried to blend the sugar smaller, but yea..,no dice, don't try it. It was terrible. The flavor of the icing itself was heavenly, I'll definitely do it again when I get some powdered sugar. Definitely. Remember, granulated sugar in icing = no. It might work as a sub in certain other uses, but don't try it in frosting.
Duncan Hines is great, it gives a denser cupcake than some of the other ones. I hate biting into a cupcake and finding that it's so fluffy that the cupcake falls apart. Cakes, I like fluffy, but not cupcakes. There's something about eating a cupcake and being upset at how it doesn't satisfy you because there's like nothing there.