Zucchini Cupcakes with White Chocolate Cranberry Frosting
Over the last two weeks, as I’ve molded my schedule around the impending cookbook deadline, most mornings begin as usual. The fam and I awake. We eat breakfast. We pack lunches. We study scriptures. We pray. We shuttle everyone out the door and off to a variety of activities. Yearbook, Music Club, Cello, Student Council, Schoolyard Antics. Not much different in those early morning minutes.
Once the kids off to school, however, the schedule has altered dramatically. No morning jogs. No pittering around with the laundry. It’s a frenzy of writing and cooking and photog-ing. Rush, rush, rush until the 2 p.m. bell rings and I step back into mommy shoes for the afternoon. (Ah, bless those mommy shoes. They are the best pair I own.)
I tried cookbook writing from a musty cubicle in the library. It was lovely imagining I was a real live author for a day or so, tucked away as I was in the silent, studious atmosphere of the nonfiction bookshelves. But, I found all that writing about food got me terribly hungry at the most inconvenient of moments. And, seeing as how the library doesn’t welcome the chomp of a salad eating authoress, I tried writing from the elegant corners of a bustling restaurant. Being with fellow business folk, tucked in tightly with a plastic fork and endless supply of fountain drinks, I thought I’d become ever more prosperous. I wasn’t.
And, so I tried writing from home. From the unmade chocolate-brown quilt which lies upon our king-sized bed. With Pikes Peak peeking through the bedroom windows, and the occasional ring of the telephone. It was all fairly lovely and comfortable until our 4-pound friend, Yoda decided to take up his rightful place as guard-dog extraordinaire.
For two weeks, Yoda has curled his little yellow body around my thigh, sleeping soundly until the exact moment when the curiously dangerous mailman arrives (at which point, he barks furiously, protecting that cookbook manuscript of mine with his fearsome yapping.) He’s set up vigil during cupcake shoots. Waits patiently under the stove when bacon is sizzling. Stares wisely into my eyes when I sigh through writers block.
He’s a pal, I tell you. That little dog of ours has proven himself loyal to the bitter end of cookbooking. The fact that he’s fun to smooch on and adorably photogenic? Well, that’s the cherry on top.
White Chocolate Cranberry Frosting for Zucchini Muffin Cakes
Sweet and comforting, with a hearty splash of cinnamon, then topped with a divinely fluffy white chocolate & cranberry frosting, these simple autumn cupcakes are perfectly delicious. The actual cupcake is a quick bakes version of my Zucchini Bread recipe which was posted over at Babble a couple of weeks ago. Plop spoonfuls of the batter into cupcake cups and bake them for 18-20 minutes, or just until they spring back to the touch. As soon as they are completely cooled, you can frost them with this white-chocolate fudge frosting.
1 tablespoon cornstarch
3 tablespoon milk
1/2 c. white chocolate chips
1 stick butter
1 pound powdered sugar
2 tablespoons cranberries, chopped
In a small, microwave-safe bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and milk. Microwave for 10 seconds, or just until the mixture is slightly thickened. Place in fridge and allow to cool completely. In a medium, microwave-safe bowl, melt the white chocolate chips. Use a spatula to scrape melted chips into a large bowl. With an electric mixer, beat together melted chips, cooled cornstarch mixture, butter, and powdered sugar until light and fluffy. Add milk by the teaspoons, if needed to make the mixture thinner. Fold in chopped cranberries. Frost cooled zucchini muffins with the frosting. Enjoy!