Tuesday:) Toni’s Tasty Tip of the Day

13 Sep

“If God had intended us to follow recipes, He wouldn’t have given us grandmothers.” ― Linda Henley

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I’m not the world’s greatest baker or cook, but perhaps one of the most prolific. I just love to create things in the kitchen, and mass quantities of the stuff. I may start out with a basic box or mix or recipe, but then I mess around with it until I’ve created a masterpiece. Must be the artist in me. The kitchen is my second art studio.

Today, I’m going to share the secret to my triple lemony mini cupcakes. (Don’t tell anyone…it’s a secret.) But, I did have over a dozen people tell me how delicious they were and asked for the recipe. Recipe? “We don’t need no stinkin’ recipe!”


I start out with two boxes of lemon cake mix and a can of lemon frosting.(Doctored up later) What kind you ask? A special kind. It has to be on sale. Never pay full price for cake or brownie mixes! The same goes for frosting mix, on the rare occasion I use canned. The way I go through them, it would cost me a fortune.

I make the mix as per directions using my harvest gold Hamilton Beach hand mixer my mother bought me in 1975 for a wedding gift. The mixer still works great, never disappoints, and has been my constant companion. Can’t say the same for the husband. (A little divorce humor,) 


Oh, I forgot! The first thing I do is make a funny face with the mix. This one is an artist, in honor of my friend, Annie Royer. I was making some cupcakes for her Gallery reception at the Martin Place last Saturday. Also, I wanted to take some to my fire stations for 9/11.


When you do as much baking as I do, it’s wise to invest in some humongous cupcake pans. I have several. This one holds 4 dozen minis. I have three. 

I line the pans with the mini paper cup liners, then scoop about a tablespoon of lemon cake batter. Then, I place a slice of marshmallow, as you see in the first photo. I ran out of minis, so I took a large marshmallow and cut in thirds with scissors, actually works better because they are perfectly round and sit on top nicely. Push it down a little because they puff up when baking. I place a tiny, maybe 1/2 teaspoon of lemon pudding on top of that. (I bought pre-made pudding because the dry mix was $1.29 a box and I’d have to buy milk too. This 4 pack was on sale for 99 cents. Yay!) 

Because these are minis, you have to watch them carefully, they bake fast. How long? Before they burn! Been there…done that. While the first batch cools, I toss in another couple of pans. Two boxes of mix makes well over 140 cupcakes. Really!

I’m not a huge fan of canned frosting, but I had bought some….because….they were on sale! But, I did make some homemade cream cheese frosting to add to the canned. I added a little lemon juice instead of milk to the butter, cream cheese and powdered sugar, (no vanilla) then combined both. I frosted a swirl on top of each with the pastry bag my sister JoAnn bought me as a gift from the Dollar Store. (She knows me well.) Yummy!


Well, that’s the secret recipe. The biggest part of the recipe is sharing with as many people as possible. I had enough for Miss Annie’s reception, two fire stations, a few neighbors, and of course, several that I needed to sample for “quality control.”


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