As with many authors my early books had a lot of who I am sprinkled within the pages.
In the Loudon Series I have a café, What’s Perkin’ where Cari McKenna starts her life over after losing her husband and best friend. It’s within those fictional walls where Cari perfects her recipes for blueberry muffins, which happen to be a favorite of Ray Davis along with many other treats.
As Cari is passionate about friends and helping those in need one young woman in need of a job comes to town. Of course, Cari immediately comes up with a plan to start by giving her a job on a trial basis for two weeks. During the two weeks Dani wins over not only Cari but her customers with delicious and decadent cupcakes.
Since I can’t invite each of you into my kitchen for a cup of coffee and a cupcake I wanted to share with you one of Dani’s special creations.
Chocolate Cupcakes with Graham Cracker Crumb
1 Sleeve Graham Crackers
1 Stick Butter
Place graham crackers in a 1 gallon plastic bag and crush with your hands, or use a rolling pin to crush the graham crackers into crumbs. Once a nice crumb has been reached, transfer crumbs to a bowl.
Melt butter in a sauce pan, keeping a close eye to make sure it doesn’t burn. Once butter is melted, allow to cool for two minutes. Then, pour butter over crumbs and mix until all crumbs are moistened.
Line your cupcake tins with your liners of choice, and then scoop approximately 1.5 tablespoons of the crumb mixture into the base of each muffin cup patting down slightly to form a layer in the bottom of the cup.
Prepare your cake batter, either homemade or store-bought mix, and pour over the crumb layer, filling each cup about 2/3 full.
Bake as the directions indicate, to when a toothpick comes out almost clean, with perhaps a few crumbs attached. Allow to cool for 5-8 minutes in the pan, and then transfer cupcakes to a cooling rack to cool completely.
4 ounces Semisweet Chocolate Chips
4 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon honey
In a saucepan, melt together the chocolate, butter, and honey over medium heat and stir until completely combined, then allow to cool to room temperature. Chocolate should be at a point where it is easily spreadable, but not runny.
4 egg whites
1 cup granulated sugar
In a double boiler (pot of boiling water with a metal mixing bowl set on top, but not touching the water’s surface), whisk together the egg whites and sugar until the sugar is completely dissolved and the egg whites are just warm to the touch, about 3-4 minutes. Remove from the heat, transfer to a medium mixing bowl or to a stand mixer with whisk attachment, and beat the egg whites until they form stiff, shiny peaks, which should take about 5-8 minutes.
The Final Step
Using a spatula or knife, apply a thin layer of chocolate to the top of each cupcake, then, add a dollop of meringue to the top. This can be done by either using two spoons, or a piping bag, or even a gallon size bag with the corner cut off to create a piping bag. To finish, use a kitchen torch to toast the tops to give it that fresh from the campfire s’more look.
If you’re interested in other sweet treat ideas check out The Loudon Series where e-books are sold and don’t forget to visit www.lucindarace.com for details on upcoming releases and my newsletter.
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Until next time,
I wish you happiness.