Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Cupcakes & Cocktails!

Geoffrey and I recently hosted a couples wedding shower for our good friends Jamie and Todd. I love to entertain, and I often use the same format when creating my party theme. It's pretty simple - I just pick two of the guest-of-honor's favorite things and plan everything around that. For the soon-to-be Mr. and Mrs, the Cupcakes & Cocktails theme was born! I find that this is an easy, yet personal approach to party planning. For Geoffrey's last birthday, we hosted an afternoon BBQ with the theme 'Bourbon & Brats'.

I must say that planning a menu around cupcakes is much more fun than bratwurst. I loved testing out friends and families favorite cake and cupcake recipes! The biggest hit at the party came from my brother's wife, Katie. Her recipe for cinnamon toast cupcakes was quite the crowd pleaser. Only one hiccup - on party day the icing application did not go as planned. *Note to self- there is no good substitute for a pastry bag. Zip lock baggies with a hole cut in the corner do not pipe icing well...no matter how good it may look in your head! Due to the icing snaffu, I renamed these "Cinnamon Bun" cupcakes, but I actually think they are pretty cute as is!

Of course I will be scrapping this fun event, and used Cookbookin' recipe cards and papers for both mine and Jamie's album. I hope you enjoy the Cinnamon Bun cupcakes as much as we did!

Cinnamon Bun Cupcakes

1 (18 1/4 ounce) package yellow cake mix
1 (3 1/3 ounce) package vanilla instant pudding mix
1 1/4 cups whole milk
3/4 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
cooking spray

Place baking rack in center of oven and preheat to 350ºF. Line cupcake pans with liners and spray top of pan with cooking spray. Place cake mix, pudding mix, milk, oil, eggs and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl. Blend with mixer on low for 30 seconds. Scrape down sides of bowl and increase to medium for 1-1/2 to 2 minutes. Spoon 1/3 cup of batter into each liner (about 3/4 full). Place pan(s) in oven on middle rack. Bake cupcakes till they are golden brown, (about 18 to 22 minutes). Cool on wire racks for 5 minutes. Slowly and carefully turn pan on it's side and remove cupcakes. Cool 15 minutes and frost with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting. I used the swirl "technique" (Ha!) pictured to make the cupcakes look like little cinnamon buns and topped with cinnamon spinkles.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Welcome friends!

Welcome to the new Cookbookin' Blog!

I am so excited to introduce everyone to the new Cookbookin' website. As many of you know, the Cookbookin' line of product was acquired from Sulyn Industries by Jackie and Patty of PJK Designs in June of 2008. The Cookbookin' product line has since been edited and reworked to include some terrific new designs and updated favorite product.

Please allow me to introduce myself. I am Alice Kershaw, the marketing director for PJK Designs, the new home of Cookbookin'. The focus of this blog is a few of my favorite things ~ food, recipe scrapbooking, entertaining, gifts and more! Of course, I will always keep you up to date on the latest Cookbookin' products, projects and news. I am big on putting names to faces. I have included a picture of myself and my assistant editor, Sophie Kershaw. She is my go-to gal for all things chic and stylish. If I may, I would like to point out that both Sophie and my cheeks are a little puffier than we would like due to the upcoming arrival of baby Kershaw. My dear Sophie has accompanied me on many trips to the local Baskin Robbins as all good assistant editors should. Cookbookin' has been extra fun these last few months - everything tastes wonderful at 8 months pregnant!

Thanks for checking out the new website and stay tuned for more from the team at Cookbookin'!