(Disclaimer: This entire post was written with an inquisitive and endearing 3-year old sitting on my lap. Please excuse any spelling errors, word omissions, run on or incomplete sentences.)
Today, Faye had ketchup for the first time. (It was love at first bite.)
Today, Maddie demanded to wear my NYX Round Lipstick in the color “Snow White” before we went to the grocery store. (She was an instant hit with the 65+ mid-morning shopping crowd.)
Today, we had a dance party in our pajamas to mommy’s new favorite funk-pop song “Sugar” by Maroon 5. (…We nailed it.)
Today, I am entering a new phase of life. It’s called full time stay-at-home mom.
Over the course of the past three years, I’ve had two wonderful women care for my girls in Chicago and New York while I ran my old letterpress stationery business and took on some freelance design work. Life has stepped in and now our favorite sitters have their own families. It comes at an agreeable time as I have reduced my design workload significantly over the past several months.
I am not quite sure what the next several weeks or months will bring. Down the road, I may have a sitter again so I can focus on my much loved design work. But, in the near term, my focus is going to be on spending quality time with my little girls. Dancing, doing makeup, working on our “first things.”
The nice thing about blogging is that I can do it when I have the chance. And, baking and cooking, which is a large part of my blogging strategy, happens to be something that I really enjoy doing with the girls. So, although I may post less frequently, you will still be seeing some of our wonderful creations.
Now, about these Chocolate Cupcakes with Nutella Buttercream Frosting. There are two reasons why I made these: I had a jar of Nutella sitting on my kitchen shelves for for-ev-er and it was sacrificed during a New Year organizing binge. And, Maddie demanded that we make something with a) chocolate and b) sprinkles. I am not a chocolate lover by nature, but I must say that these were delicious!
One word of caution: I would probably avoid adding sprinkles on these cupcakes. Mine bounced right off of the Nutella! My food stylist and I (see below) did manage to get them to collect in the crevices of the frosting swirls for the photos.
Cheers to all you moms out there! I will see you on the playground.
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup light brown sugar
- ⅓ cup canola (or coconut oil or vegetable oil)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ cup buttermilk*
- 1½ cups butter, softened
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- pinch of salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup Nutella
- Preheat the oven to 350F degrees. Line a standard sized muffin pan with cupcake liners. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk the cocoa powder, flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together until well mixed. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, sugar, brown sugar, oil, and vanilla together until completely smooth.
- Pour half of the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Pour in half of the buttermilk* and gently whisk for a few seconds. Repeat with the remaining wet ingredients and buttermilk. Stir until just combined.
- Spoon the batter into the liners until they are halfway filled.
- Bake for 18-19 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool completely before frosting.
- *If you don't have buttermilk, you can make your own: mix 1 teaspoon white vinegar or lemon juice with ½ cup milk. Stir and let sit for 5 minutes.
- In a large bowl, beat the butter until it is light and fluffy. Gradually add the powdered sugar and salt until smooth Add vanilla and beat until combined. Add Nutella and beat until light and fluffy.
- Frost cupcakes and decorate as desired. (I used a 1M Wilton decorating tip.)