Cookbook Review: “Butter Celebrates!” By Rosie Daykin
Another beautiful cookbook written by Vancouver based bakeshop owner, Rosie Daykin. If you haven’t already checked out her first cookbook “Butter Baked Goods”, you are truly missing out. The recipes in this book are amazing and the food photography by award winning photographer, Janis Nicolay is spot on. There are pictures for every recipe, which as you all know, I LOVE! I can just stare at these pictures all day and drool. I tabbed up this book in a matter of 20 minutes with all the recipes I wanted to try.
This cookbook is all about baking for celebrations. Rosie’s introduction speaks about her love of baking for others for special occasions. “This is much more than a cake. This is someone’s life and we’ve been included.” (p.2) Rosie warmly welcomes you to recreate some of the recipes in this book and let them become traditions in your own home.
Included in the beginning of the book is a section on “Essential Elements of Entertaining.” Here she briefly goes over a couple things that work for her in prepping for company and meals. Making lists, setting a nice table, creating a warm atmosphere with candles, music, decorations, and serving food family-style. Also included is a section on cupboard staples, tools and equipment. The staples she includes are pretty basic for the most part and there isn’t anything too fancy here.
The final section “Some Gentle Reminders” I had thought was going to be annoying but as I read it, I appreciated it more than I thought I would. She briefly goes over a couple techniques and tips that even seasoned bakers can quite easily forget such as what exactly room temperature butter is and testing it with your fingers, making substitutions and how it will affect your end product. I have substituted many times due to not having something in the house and (I hate to admit it but..) not reading through the entire recipe prior to starting. So I thoroughly enjoyed reading the tips.
The book is divided into the following celebrations:
- Valentine’s Day
- Patrick’s Day
- Mother’s Day
- Summer Celebrations
- New Years
- Sweet Packages
- Butter Creams and Frostings
About The Recipes:
The recipes are well organized and easy to follow. They are measured by volume, not weight. Most of the ingredients are easily assessable at your local supermarket. The directions are fairly straightforward and easy enough for a beginner baker. Some of them are long and depending on the type of baker you are (I am a slow baker with a toddler hanging off me which doubles the duration of anything) and the time you have available in your life. Some can be a little time consuming, but I assure you these recipes are well worth it.
I managed to tackle the “Cupcakes with the Most-ess” as this recipe, (which is essentially a knock off recipe of the famous Hostess Cupcakes) has been on my to do list for ages. I am on the hunt for the perfect replica and I think I may have found it. Here is the recipe:
CUPCAKES WITH THE MOST-ESS
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup dark cocoa
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
½ cup butter, room temperature
¾ cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla
½ cup whole milk
1 tbsp all-purpose flour
1-cup butter, room temperature
2 cups icing sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla
1 recipe Chocolate Ganache (at end of recipe)
Makes: 1 dozen cupcakes
You will need: 1 muffin pan, buttered and floured, large ice cream scoop, 14-inch piping bag fitted with a small plain tip, 1 (11×17-inch) rimmed cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Preheat the oven to 350 F
- For the cupcakes, on a large piece of parchment paper, sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Add the buttermilk and vanilla and beat to combine.
- With the mixer running on low speed, slowly add the dry ingredients and beat until combined.
- Use the ice cream scoop to fill each muffin cup three quarters full.
- Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until a wooden skewer inserted in the centre of a cupcake comes out clean.
- Remove the cupcakes from the oven and allow them to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes before gently placing them on wire racks to cool completely.
- Meanwhile, prepare the filling. In a small pot over medium heat, combine the milk and flour and whisk until the mixture starts to thicken, about 5 minutes. Set aside to cool.
- In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and icing sugar until pale yellow. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Add the cooled milk and vanilla and beat on high speed until light and fluffy. Fill the prepared piping bag with this mixture.
- Prepare the Chocolate Ganache and pour it into a bowl that is deep enough for you to submerge a cupcake in it.
- Push the tip of your piping bag through the bottom of a cupcake and squeeze gently until the cupcake starts to swell. Don’t squeeze too hard or the cupcake may split from too much filling. Repeat with all the cupcakes. Reserve the balance of the filling in the bag for decorating the top of the cupcakes.
- Once all the cupcakes have been filled, drop them one by one in the ganache. Use a fork to gently lift the cupcake from the ganache and tap it on the edge of the bowl to help remove any excess. Transfer each dipped cupcake to the prepared tray and use a knife to help slide the cupcake off the fork.
- Place the cupcakes in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes to help the ganache set. Once it has set, you can pipe the top of each cupcake with a little more filling for decoration.
Chocolate Ganache Recipe
Makes: 3 cups
3 cups dark chocolate chips
2 tbsp butter, room temperature
¼ cup whipping cream
- In a double boiler over medium heat, or a heatproof bowl placed over simmering water, melt the chocolate chips and butter.
- Remove the chocolate from the heat and whisk in the cream. Allow the ganache to cool slightly before use.
- The ganache can be made several days in advance and kept in the refrigerator. When your ready to use it, place the bowl over a simmering pot of water to warm it through.
A couple notes on my experience:
Something went wrong for me while making the ganache . The moment I poured the whipping cream in the melted chocolate-butter mixture, it seized and became lumpy and thick. I had to throw it in the garbage. I re-read the recipe to make sure I did everything correctly and it seems I did. I used 70% Lindt Coverture chocolate, not sure if that made a difference. I’m thinking it may have been on the heat too long and my butter may not have been completely at room temperature. (These little things count!) I didn’t want to risk wasting another 3 cups of it so when I redid the ganache, I decided to use a Martha Stewart recipe that I have used in the past. Her recipe requires warming the whipping cream and pouring over the chocolate. It seemed to work well for me. If you do try this recipe out, and the ganache comes out well, please comment below I would love to know! (and know where I went wrong!)
While filling the cupcakes with the mixture, I did not put the tip deep enough into the cupcake. This resulted in not enough of the filling in the centre of the cupcake and lots of leftover filling. (see pic below) I think this requires a teeny bit of practice as to what the cupcakes look like when they swell with the filling, as I also ended up with a couple split ones depite the warning!
These tasted phenomenal. Despite some of the challenges I had, I would 100% make them again based on taste alone. My husband ate almost the entire batch.
Some other great recipes you can expect to find in this cookbook:
Chocolate Whoppie Hearts with Raspberry Fluff Fill
Chocolate Cake for Two
Irish Coffee Cupcakes
Guinness Cake with Pretzels
Coconut Marshmallow Bunnies
Double Decker Eclairs
Dark Chocolate Cherry Loaf
Banana Pecan Caramel Cake
And many, many more!
The end of this wonderful cookbook takes us to a section on “Sweet Packages.” This section briefly goes over unique ways of packaging your baked goods and tying the perfect bow.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this gorgeous picture-packed Cookbook. I look forward to baking my way through this book and referring to it on my next big (or small) occasion. To say the least, it is definitely a keeper. Stay tuned to my social media accounts for pictures as I occasionally recreate more of the recipes!
**I purchased “BUTTER CELEBRATES!” By Rosie Daykin at Chapters.indigo.ca for $21.94 (prices are subject to change) All opinions in this post are 100% my own. This book is published by “Appetite by Random House” www.penguinrandomhouse.ca.