Vanilla

Double Vanilla Cupcakes

Double Vanilla Cupcakes

I’ve taken to calling these double vanilla cupcakes, because it’s vanilla cupcakes with vanilla buttercream. The recipes came from Sally’s Baking Addiction and the frosting decoration was part of her monthly baking challenge for this month. Mine didn’t quite look like roses as hers did, but I still thought they came out beautifully.

This weekend was supposed to be full of rain, so I planned indoor activities for Saturday, but so far I haven’t seen a drop.

My indoor activities included making these delicious cupcakes (the crumb on these are amazing!), watching Doc Martin on Netflix, reading “All Grown Up” by Jami Attenberg and some good old puttering around the house.

A new method for my to-do lists is to write each thing I want to get done on a separate post-it note on my bathroom mirror. I got about 4 things done today of about 12 that I put up there. I’ll let you know how this works. It does remind me of what needs to be done every time I wash my hands, but I find after a few days I stop seeing notes around the house at times.

I hope you’re all having a wonderful weekend!

Elsie Larson’s Vanilla Whiskey Holiday Cocktail

By Antonio F Delgado

Every month, the Austin Food Bloggers Alliance sends out a challenge to its members. This month, AFBA called us to create a cocktail. This was a challenge that the Spooners could take on!

Tiffany sent me an email with Elsie Larson’s Vanilla Bean Whiskey Cocktail. I am a huge fan of Elsie and her husband, Jeremy. Elsie and her sister do a great job posting photos, recipes and crafts, while her husband crafts musical gems in Sucre, his solo project, Jeremy Larson; and strings behind Switchfoot and MuteMath. One day, I will gift myself a Full-On-Jeremy-Larson-Takeover. And I digress to fan-dom.

After looking over the recipe, I realized that I have two ways of making cocktails.

  1. Like A College Student – Using traditional mixers. ie. Coke, Tonic, Soda
  2. Like A Refined Gentleman – Drinking my whiskey neat.

I do enjoy heading out to a bar with a great mixologist and having them make me their house special. However, I hadn’t taken this practice home with me until now.

Note 1: Elsie’s cocktail calls for vanilla-infused whiskey. We did not take the mere 24-48 hours to infuse our whiskey due to deadline, but we do recommend it.

Note 2: For some reason, Dr. McGillicuddy’s Raw Vanilla is unavailable in Austin. After several trips to Specs, we learned that only Specs on Airport Boulevard has Dekuyper Vanilla available. In addition, I had a rep at my neighborhood liquor store mention vanilla extract as a suitable replacement. Don’t do it. It makes your drink look murky and unappealing.

A Beautiful Mess’ Vanilla Whiskey Cocktail

The Spooners made 2 alterations to this cocktail due to our lack of time and some ingenuity.

  • 2 ounces whiskey
  • 1/2 an ounce  vanilla liqueur
  • 2 dashes aromatic cocktail bitters
  • 1/2 tablespoon fresh orange juice
  • star anise
  • small dash of fresh vanilla bean

We found that fresh orange juice compliments the star anise beautifully.

Directions: Gather all of the ingredients into a shake. Cover Shaker. Shake vigorously. Serve with a new star anise, not the broken one from the shaker. Enjoy with friends and show them that you are classy.

Note 3: Due to the fact that Antonio and his roommates at the Baylor House are bachelors, none of the glassware matches in these photos.

Note 4: Jack Daniel’s did not sponsor this post, but if they would like to make a donation to OhSpooning, we will gladly accept. We Spooners aren’t too cheap to beg.

Here’s a link to the original post and recipe: http://www.abeautifulmess.com/2013/12/vanilla-bean-whiskey-cocktail.html