It is finally here! The season that little people and some big people favor most of the year. Christmas is finally upon us!
I may have written this before, but this is not my favorite holiday. It reminds me of a really bad drug (like a decongestant) that gets you all hyped up only to plummet you to the bottom of the deepest darkest hole. OK, maybe that is a bit extreme but I ain’t a fan. We all feel way too busy rushing around. We all hear those car horns a little more this time of year. Everyone seems a little Mad. And for most Moms and Dads, it can be brutal having your little monkey look at you with those sweet eyes, saying “please get me that iPad mini” that is over $300. I sold my car from college for about that much.
I believe the best part of this year is staying warm in the kitchen while baking goodies for friends and family. And sometimes eating the goodies myself while watching Netflix in the comfort of my own home. Sometimes I turn on some calming music (maybe a little Frank Sinatra’s Christmas but only once during the season) and zone in on the baking, tuning everything else out. All eyes do light up and twinkle when given that gift that is made from the heart and fills the belly.
The girls and I have so much fun concocting different sweet treats. One such treat are these Vanilla Pound Cupcakes. I call them pound cakes because they use more egg than a normal yellow vanilla cake. They can be tricky because as they cool, they will shrink from the cupcake tin. I found this Pound Cake recipe from Gourmet. It was called Elvis Presley’s Favorite Pound Cake. I changed a couple of things, like the egg amount, to make them into more of a yummy cupcake.
You will need to soften your butter to room temperature. This always gets me because I forget and then need to make it on the fly.
2 sticks butter
3 cups sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups all purpose flour (sifted)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup heavy whipping cream
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream your butter and sugar together in a mixer and then add the eggs one at a time. Add vanilla and mix. Scrape down of your bowl. Add half your flour, then all your heavy cream, and finish with your last bit of flour and salt. Mix this on high speed for 5-6 minutes. This is where the batter will get a lovely silky texture. Bake your cupcakes for about 45 minutes. Check to make sure your toothpick comes out clean!
You will love this with berries and cream in the summertime too. It doesn’t hurt to dream of the warm spring, which IS my favorite season. It will be here sooner than we know.
Here is to spending way too much money on the monkeys and feeding them way too much sugar. But, most importantly, to their faces lighting up when they receive what they didn’t expect, which is always priceless.