With blueberries being $0.99 a pint at my local green grocer (well more like Chinese Superstore extravaganza - they sell everything there) I figured I'd buy a half-dozen and see what I could make with them.

Blueberries are technically not really blue, but purple. But it doesn't matter, the color is still so wonderfully rich and inviting, it would be a crime not to bake with them.

Of course, with the trusty internet on hand, I scoured Epicurious.com for a quick and easy recipe. And yes, the site delivered in the form of a Blueberry Crumb Cake.

And what I got was a light, fluffy, richly blueberry cake with just the right amount of crunch/texture on top for the crumble.

A perfect way to celebrate the blueberry in my opinion. Well, other than eating them fresh with some vanilla ice-cream.



Irish Car Bomb?

Ever since I saw the recipe while perusing through smittenkitchen.com, I came across a recipe that I've been wanting to try out ever since I bought a six-pack of Guinness Extra Stout for a BBQ recipe. The BBQ sauce was a hit, and I finally got around to making these Irish Car Bomb Cupcakes yesterday.

What exactly is an Irish Car Bomb? Well, according to Wikipedia (my go to source for instant laymen knowledge)

An Irish Car Bomb is a beer cocktail which is a variation of the boilermaker. It is made with stout (e.g., Guinness), Irish Cream (e.g., Baileys), and Irish whiskey (e.g., Jameson).
The name refers the drinks Irish ingredients and to the car bombings notoriously used by the Provisional Irish Republican Army (PIRA) during the Troubles. The Jameson whiskey is floated on top of the Baileys in a shot glass, and the shot glass is then dropped into the stout. Once mixed, the drink must be consumed quickly because it will curdle.

The cake recipe itself was really easy to make, and it almost felt like the additional carbonation from the Guinness made for a seductively moist cake. Not to mention the maltiness of the Guinness melded perfectly with the organic cocoa I used.

The whiskey ganache was also relatively simple to make, but I think I erred in this case by not using a higher cocoa-content bitter chocolate. Next time, I think 65% or higher would work better. Read on and I'll tell you why.

The reason is because the frosting is so goddamn sweet! It's all butter, sugar and then Bailey's Irish Cream. With a higher cocoa-content in the ganache, I feel that the frosting will be balanced out. However, my brother's liked them - but my brother's liking my baked goods is subjective - they eat anything with sugar in it!

In the end, the cupcakes were a success and one of my brother's friends said that they would pay me for a batch. Pay me with gratitude.

The jury is out on whether I would like to be paid in "gratitude". Baking is hard work!