celebration cupcakes and the summer of woot woot

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celebration cupcakes

It’s here! The Summer of Woot Woot! That’s what I’m calling this summer. This summer before everything changes in the fall. And when I utter scream the words: Summer of Woot Woot, I really hit the woots. I like to yell Woot Woot, and then jump into the air. I jump really high and twist my body whilst doing a double fist pump. That’s how you do a freeze frame, people. This summer is gunna be an event. No, wait… a lifestyle. It. Will. Be. Epic.

celebration cupcakes

I finished my regular work season on Sunday. A long day of dance-related mayhem. Loads of chiffon, tulle, mascara and sweat. I have only twelve nights of teaching between now and the end of July, and then I have August completely off. That’s gunna give me a lot of time for making my house look less like a bunch of frat boys have been squatting here. And that’s a lot of time for baking, learning how to use my freakin’ camera, and hanging out with you. Oh, and my nieces are coming to visit! From France! I’m so freakin’ excited. I’ve been looking forward to this for weeks. I’m totally ready to kick The Summer of Woot Woot into high gear. But first? I have to get out of bed.

celebration cupcakes

I got sick last week. It has been… unpleasant. (For everyone involved.) My hair looks like rats have been sucking on it. I am sniffly. And whiny. My throat feels like it has sandpaper in it. Sandpaper that is on fire. And something is living in my lungs. I think it’s a garburator. In one year I’ve gone from a person that never, ever gets sick, to one of those decrepit old women that gets anything and everything that is going around. Like a nursing home resident, I am too frail to fend off germs, so I am quarantined in my bedroom, waiting for someone to bring me news from the outside world. And do you know why I’m sick? Because I work with humans. And those humans like to turn to you and say, “I have pneumonia,” after they’ve been touching you all day.

So, as my frail body mends, I give you these cupcakes. Because I love you, and I figure you can start celebrating without me. But know that I am weary. I can hardly yell Woot Woot! And my body doesn’t get very high in the air when I’m trying to create some freeze frame magic. Know that I am resting quietly in my bedroom. And that 2.0 has been cutting my meat for me at mealtime.

These cupcakes are a one-bowl deal. Easy, right? Even frail people can make them. These cupcakes are an old-fashioned, yellow cake type affair. This recipe is terribly straightforward, and can also be used to make a two-layer, nine inch round cake. It’s a great recipe to use if you’re a little afraid of making cakes and stuff. Because it’s old-school. And old-school recipes don’t use crap like rose water or involve multiple, time-wasting steps. Nope. An old-school recipe takes some stuff you’ve probably got living in your cupboard, jams it into a bowl, and then bakes it. These cupcakes have a nice texture – light and moist. And the icing? It’s the same stuff I used on Mackenzie’s birthday cake. It has shortening in it. So it won’t get all melty and disgusting in warmer weather. I know, butter’s better. And you could use that instead if you like.

celebration cupcakes

Now go. Go on without me. Be my wings.

Woot… cough, cough, cough… woot.

. . .

Celebration Cupcakes {a basic yellow cupcake} – adapted slightly from a recipe handed down by Rosie Beaucoup, original source unknown – print and bake

Yields approximately 24 cupcakes.

  • 2 1/2 cups cake and pastry flour (not self-rising)
  • 3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups white granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla or vanilla bean paste
  • 2 eggs, room temperature

Line muffin tins with cupcake liners. Preheat oven to 350°F.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt into the bowl of your stand mixer. (You could, of course, prepare this recipe with a hand-held electric mixer.)

Add the butter, milk and vanilla. Mix on low speed to blend the ingredients, and then beat for 2 minutes at medium speed. Scrape the bottom and sides of bowl at least once during the mixing time.

Add the eggs and beat 2 minutes longer at medium speed. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl at least once during the mixing time.

Fill muffin wells about 2/3 full and then bake for about 20 minutes. A cake tester inserted into the centre of a cupcake should come out clean. Cool for five minutes before turning out onto a wire rack.

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Buttercream Icing – adapted slightly from i am baker, who adapted it from Rick Mazzuca – print and slather on baked goods

This is not a true buttercream – it’s a crusting icing, ideal for decorating. It uses shortening. Try not to freak out.

Yields enough to frost approximately 24 cupcakes.

  • 1 cup shortening
  • 4 cups icing/confectioner’s sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons clear imitation vanilla extract
  • 6 tablespoons heavy cream

In a stand mixer on medium speed, cream the shortening until fluffy (about 3 minutes). Add 2 cups of icing sugar, mixing first on the stir setting (to avoid plumes of icing sugar blowing throughout your kitchen), and then increase speed to medium. Mix until well combined. Add the remaining two cups of icing sugar, and mix until well combined. If your mixer is struggling to combine the shortening and sugar, add a tablespoon of heavy cream (but be sure to add only 5 tablespoons in the next step).

Add the salt, vanilla and heavy cream, and blend until well combined. Then beat on medium speed until the frosting is light and fluffy.

Add additional cream or icing sugar to adjust to desired consistency. When adjusting consistency, add the cream or icing sugar in very small quantities – it is easy to over-correct.

Note: you can make this recipe substituting butter for the shortening and pure vanilla extract for the clear imitation, but the frosting will not be white – it will be cream/off-white coloured. You may find that shortening based icings hold up better in heat and humidity.

32 Responses to celebration cupcakes and the summer of woot woot

  1. thekalechronicles June 12, 2012 at 10:12 am #

    Pneumonia! Clearly, you are suffering from an overdose of shortening in frosting! Have 2.0 hide the can and dose yourself with some nice butter instead, or make some sweets that won’t melt in the heat (muffins, cookies, scones). While you lie abed languishing. I celebrated for you by taking my first open water swim of 2012. Woot, woot!

    • movita beaucoup June 12, 2012 at 10:17 am #

      You’re right. I need more butter in this body. It will do me a world of good. Butter fixes everything! And thanks for taking a dip for me – woot woot!!

    • emma June 12, 2012 at 10:25 am #

      That’s what I was thinking, too. It’s the shortening.

  2. ceciliag June 12, 2012 at 10:25 am #

    Ah the frail baker.. i believe that is me!! You on the other hand will get well soon and leap up and have a woot woot time!! with your nieces! c

  3. emma June 12, 2012 at 10:25 am #

    A lifestyle of sick. How on earth are you going to get through 250 breads if you can’t handle a simple case of pneumonia?

    I’m worried about you – if you have to go to the old folks’ home, can I have your cakelet stands?

    • movita beaucoup June 12, 2012 at 7:23 pm #

      Yes. You can have my cakelet stands should things end… badly. But just so you know – the 250 breads are really for pneumonia prevention.

  4. Geraldine June 12, 2012 at 10:28 am #

    They look yummy, and pretty too!

  5. Ignorant Bystander June 12, 2012 at 10:36 am #

    What doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger.

    …unless it does kill you, I suppose.

  6. Maureen (@OrgasmicChef) June 12, 2012 at 10:51 am #

    Gorgeous cupcakes. I’m a lot less worried about the shortening than all the germs waiting to hop off when I walk by. I do hope you feel better and are able to hop with wild abandon soon.

    • movita beaucoup June 12, 2012 at 11:29 am #

      Not to worry – I made these long before I got sick! Though perhaps making a batch of cupcakes today would get me on the road to hopping with with abandon…

  7. busymomblogs June 12, 2012 at 10:58 am #

    Beautiful cupcakes!

  8. Bonnie June 12, 2012 at 12:14 pm #

    Sending Hugs. Feel better soon.

  9. sani panini June 12, 2012 at 12:18 pm #

    So so pretty!

  10. craftytammie June 12, 2012 at 2:03 pm #

    I never got sick until small children moved in with us. we do teach them to share, i suppose… i just didn’t realize that included streptococcus. feel better soon, please.

    • movita beaucoup June 12, 2012 at 7:24 pm #

      This is the first comment on my blog ever to include the work streptococcus. And I thank you for that.

  11. Ann June 12, 2012 at 3:53 pm #

    Dang, that is not the best way to start the summer of Woot Woot, but you have such the best sense of humor about being sick!! Hope you get better soon! Awesome cupcakes. Definitely a celebratory time!

  12. spree June 12, 2012 at 5:46 pm #

    Oh Movita, so sad to hear you’re sick! And STILL you bake for us! Soon I know you’ll be twirling around your kitchen on your toes with spun sugar in your hair! In the meantime, we’re all so anxious for you to be up and feeling like your spunky funny self! Sending armies of good germs your way! xoxo

  13. juanitascocina June 12, 2012 at 7:53 pm #

    Feel better, sweetheart.

    Here’s hoping your wootiness comes back soon.

  14. Melissa June 12, 2012 at 8:18 pm #

    So, how do the cupcakes travel? I mean, to Toronto, to my kitchen, and then my belly.

  15. Eggton June 12, 2012 at 8:54 pm #

    I think you should start a clothing line called Woot Woot. I’m not talking bathing suits (of course) and high heeled shoes. I’m talking clothes you’d woot woot in. Like stretchy pants that allow you to twist in mid-air, with matching hoodies. There would be reflective material on on the hoodie and around the waist and ankles so that you can easily be spotted by rescue personnel and not run-over by a car. P.S. there are crazy drivers out there.

    You might want to think about embroidering “woot” and “woot” on the butt cheeks. Like Juicy Couture but wootier.

    Anyway, I’m going to talk to your mom about it. She’s always taken a keen interest in what you and your sister have worn, right? Matching collars or something?

  16. musingmar June 12, 2012 at 11:53 pm #

    Poor Movita, feel better soon! Surely some of those lovely cupcakes will get you up and jumping and fist pumping before you know it. It made me feel good just to look at them!

  17. Amy @ Elephant Eats June 13, 2012 at 10:17 am #

    These little cupcakes are so pretty! I hope you’re feeling better and that your summer of Woot Woot starts off on a good note 🙂 Have a blast!

  18. Rosie Besucoup June 13, 2012 at 8:26 pm #

    They don’t travel, Melissa. You have to come to Nova Scotia and have a lobster supper with crisp white wine on our new deck – followed by Movita’s beautiful, beautiful cupcakes!!!!

    • Melissa June 14, 2012 at 10:01 pm #

      I would love to come to Nova Scotia to fill my belly with pretty pink cupcakes!

  19. erin June 14, 2012 at 6:12 am #

    can I just say I’m a huge fan of the woot-woot as well? I hope you can get back to it at full strength soon!

  20. texydeb June 16, 2012 at 12:40 pm #

    so pretty, so delicate, so yummy, so fun…thank you…hoot hoot and twirl, just for you sweetie

  21. Ashley June 19, 2012 at 10:10 am #

    Aww, summer sick is the worst kind! I just got over a seemingly never ending bug myself – feel better do you can woot woot all summer long!!

  22. mybakingempire June 19, 2012 at 4:13 pm #

    What a perfect recipe. I have to give it a go, I’m always looking for a good basic! Feel better, you poor, frail dear 🙂 WOOT WOOT!

  23. mybakingempire June 19, 2012 at 4:13 pm #

    Oh, and duh… GORGEOUS CUPCAKES!

  24. shannon June 19, 2012 at 6:15 pm #

    as i write this, i’m really hoping you’re better. if you’re not, i see emma already laid claim to the cakelet stands, and i’m a little irritated. she’s fast with the comments. i, sadly, am not.

    i like katherine’s idea for a clothing line. however, what i believe she failed to mention is that she needs stretchy pants and hoodie ensembles for future sheep-chasing. although the reflective material may backfire on her and frighten whatever livestock she’s running down at the moment.

    your cupcakes are beautiful; i could never frost anything this perfectly on my best day, much less while i was suffering. and i hope that sprinkles one was mine.

  25. movita beaucoup December 1, 2015 at 7:57 am #

    Comments on this post are now closed as it was published in June 2012. Happy baking!

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