Meatloaf “Cupcakes” with Mashed Potato “Frosting”

During the month of Leslie‘s birthday dinners, my multi-talented culinary musician friend Jason and I decided to collaborate on a home-cooked meal for everyone’s favorite munchkin.  The email chain with Leslie, Jason, Shirley, and I procured us an abundant menu of comfort food.  I picked Meatloaf Cupcakes with Mashed Potato Frosting – a savory dish for a change.

Who Loves Mashed Potatoes?

For the mashed potato “frosting”, I used the recipe from’s meatloaf cupcake recipe.

MMM Pureed Yukon Potatoes

However, since we were already eating so heartily, I didn’t use SkinnyTaste’s meatloaf recipe.  I defaulted to my favorite Turkey and Quinoa Meatball recipe, since it pretty seamlessly incorporates quinoa and lots of veggies.

Meatloaf Cupcake “Batter”

For the potatoes, Jason did all the prep while I took forever trying to “de-leaf” the sprigs of thyme (un-de-leafable!).  The thyme added some great flavor to the potatoes as well as some color to the otherwise very beige finished product.  We pureed the potatoes in a food processor to ensure a smooth creamy finish when piping.  Yes, I piped the potatoes onto the cupcake.

“Frosting” the Cooked Meatloaf

Jason pretty much owned the roasted brussels sprouts with bacon, and even made a balsamic reduction with brown sugar drizzle to offset the saltiness of the dish.

Jason’s Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Bacon Drizzled With a Balsamic Reduction

Leslie, being the ever-gracious host she is, refused to let us do all the cooking and made yummy almond-crusted tilapia filets and phyllo and prosciutto-wrapped roasted asparagus.  However, Leslie’s eyes started to tear while she was chopping onions, so Tri MacGyver’d an “eye shield” for her.

Tri’s Makeshift Anti-Onion Eye Shield

Jason found a basic creme brulee recipe endorsed by Alton Brown on, so we went with that.  After making this, I was really surprised that a lot of people didn’t know what a vanilla bean looks like and that the pulp of a vanilla bean is what is used in recipes.

De-Beaning a Vanilla Bean!

Leslie suggested adding sliced strawberries to the recipe for some extra pizzazz and color.  Solid recommendation!

Time to Torch!

Everything was set for Leslie’s birthday dinner finale!

Birthday Dinner Party!

Here’s what my first plate (admittedly, of several) looked like!

Phyllo and Prosciutto-Wrapped Asparagus, Almond Crusted Tilapia, Brussels Sprouts, and Meatloaf Cupcakes

It ended up being my first culinary collabo, and I would say it was a success!  The first of hopefully many to come – and sooner than you think!

Blue Moon Cupcakes with Orange Cream Cheese Frosting

I’m severely backlogged on posts due to some fun and not-so-fun distractions stemming from the last few weeks, but I’m trying to make some headway here!

Jared’s New Year’s resolution for 2012 was to only eat desserts that were homemade, so Bernie and I wanted to bake for his birthday last month.  Bernie churned out some fantabulous Cherry Garcia cookies, and I took a little culinary leap of faith on  these Blue Moon cupcakes.  Jared is a big beer guy and loves Blue Moon, so I thought a combination of something delectable with beer could be fun. I found the recipe on Erica’s Sweet Tooth.


After baking the cupcakes, I was worried that there wasn’t going to be enough of a Blue Moon taste to them considering the alcohol probably burned off in the baking process.  I went ahead brushed the tops of the cupcakes with the left over beer, despite the fact that my entire kitchen smelled like Blue Moon by the time they came out of the oven.

Ready for Blue Moon Basting!

Ever since I made those Mummy Cupcakes last Halloween, I’d also been wanting to learn how to make my cupcakes look prettier. I bought a couple of frosting tips from Michael’s but neglected to get a coupler.  So, I made another makeshift pastry bag and rigorously scotch-taped the tip to the parchment paper. #ghettofabulous

Makeshift Frosting Bag - First Time Using a Piping Tip!

The frosting was sweet and lighter than your typical cream cheese frosting.  I probably added about twice as much orange zest than the recipe called for to help with the orange flavoring.  If you like the taste of Blue Moon, you will like these cupcakes. If you don’t like the taste of beer in general, you probably won’t like these. Plain and simple!

Blue Moon Cupcakes with Orange Cream Cheese Frosting

Hoping to get caught up on the rest of the backlog soon! Lights out for now!

Halloween Mummy Cupcakes

In honor of Halloween, I made these mummy cupcakes to bring in to work today.  They’re just chocolate cupcakes with a frosted mummy “face”.

What are you looking at?

I tried my hand at using a frosting tip for the first time, but the seemingly intuitive ziploc baggie method was a complete disaster.  Luckily, I found this YouTube tutorial for How to Make an Icing Bag using parchment paper and it really helped!

Ziplog Pastry Bag. #FAIL

As you can see, some of my mummy cupcakes look like they got TP’d instead.

Mummy or TP?

Since we’re on the topic of sweets, I had to post this video a coworker of mine sent to me last summer. Kirstin Lepore, you are a genius!  Happy Halloween, everyone!