Saturday, October 17, 2009

two cupcakes and some meat

I've got two different parties to go to, so I am making two different types of cupcakes today, and some beer braised brisket sandwiches

so, here are the recipes

Beer Braised Brisket


Beer Braised Brisket

1 (31/2- to 4-lb) boneless beef brisket, trimmed of excess fat
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 pound onions, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced lengthwise (6 cups)
1 Turkish or 1/2 California bay leaf
1 (12-ounce) bottle beer (not dark)
1 dried-porcini bouillon cube (less than 1/2 ounce) or 1 beef bouillon cube, crumbled
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar


Preheat oven to 350°F.

Pat brisket dry and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a 6- to 8-quart wide heavy pot over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then brown meat well on all sides, about 10 minutes total. Transfer with tongs to a platter.

Cook onions with bay leaf in fat remaining in pot over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until golden, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from heat and transfer half of onions to a bowl. Arrange brisket over onions in pot, then top with remaining onions. Add beer, bouillon cube, and vinegar (liquid should come about halfway up sides of meat) and bring to a boil.

Cover pot and braise in middle of oven until meat is very tender, 3 to 3 1/2 hours. Cool in sauce, uncovered, 30 minutes.

Transfer brisket to a clean cutting board. Skim off any fat from sauce, then season with salt and pepper. Slice meat across the grain and serve with sauce.

Tres Leches Cake (aka Tesla Cheesecake)

Tres Leches Cupcakes AKA Tesla Cheesecake


For the cake:

* Vegetable oil
* 6 3/4 ounces cake flour, plus extra for pan
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
* 4 ounces unsalted butter, room temperature
* 8 ounces sugar
* 5 whole eggs
* 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the glaze:

* 1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk
* 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
* 1 cup half-and-half

For the topping:

* 2 cups heavy cream
* 8 ounces sugar
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the cake:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly oil and flour a 13 by 9-inch metal pan and set aside.

Whisk together the cake flour, baking powder and salt in a medium mixing bowl and set aside.

Place the butter into the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the paddle attachment, beat on medium speed until fluffy, approximately 1 minute. Decrease the speed to low and with the mixer still running, gradually add the sugar over 1 minute. Stop to scrape down the sides of the bowl, if necessary. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and mix to thoroughly combine. Add the vanilla extract and mix to combine. Add the flour mixture to the batter in 3 batches and mix just until combined. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and spread evenly. This will appear to be a very small amount of batter. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until the cake is lightly golden and reaches an internal temperature of 200 degrees F.

Remove the cake pan to a cooling rack and allow to cool for 30 minutes. Poke the top of the cake all over with a skewer or fork. Allow the cake to cool completely and then prepare the glaze.
For the glaze:

Whisk together the evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk and the half-and-half in a 1-quart measuring cup. Once combined, pour the glaze over the cake. Refrigerate the cake overnight.

Place the heavy cream, sugar and vanilla into the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the whisk attachment, whisk together on low until stiff peaks are formed. Change to medium speed and whisk until thick. Spread the topping over the cake and allow to chill in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

I turned it into cupcakes (makes about a dozen, don't overfill the liners. You are better off using foil liners because it gets messy pouring the glaze in paper ones. Also I cheat and used canned whipped cream for the topping

Highball Cupcakes (aka gingerale cupcakes with whiskey buttercream)

Highball Cupcake

Ginger Ale Cupcakes


* 4 ½ cups All Purpose Flour
* 2 cups sugar
* 2 tablespoons baking powder
* ½ teaspoon salt
* 2 ¼ sticks unsalted butter
* 1 cup milk
* 1 ½ cup Ginger ale
* 3 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
* ¼ cup finely chopped candied ginger
* 2 tablespoons vanilla
* ½ cup sour cream
* 6 egg whites


Start by beating butter on high with the paddle attachment of your electric mixer. Once it turns to a pale color add the sugar and cream for 3 minutes. Add salt, baking powder, fresh ginger, and sour cream. Put ginger ale, milk, and vanilla into a separate bowl. Slowly add flour in parts of 4 alternating with liquid mixture. Once complete stir in chopped candied ginger. Beat egg whites until they have a stiff peak and fold into mixture.

Bake at 350F for approximately 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Whiskey Buttercream

1/4 cup unsalted, softened
1 tsp whiskey
1/2 tsp. vanilla
3/4 cup powdered sugar, sifted

Cream together butter, whiskey and vanilla. Add 1/2 the powdered sugar and mix until no lumps remain. Add remaining sugar and mix until smooth. You are probably gonna want to make two batches of the frosting at least