Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Strawberry Mousse and Bachlorette Party Planning

Here's another post that's in my backlog while I try to fight my way through learning a new image editing program while my free time becomes dangerously low--I already had to drop out of Rocky Horror due to my crazy schedule... I know, I don't like thinking about it. I'm going to be lost without a play to be in this fall. These backlog posts are running low though, which means one of three things: 1. I'll be silent again for a while while I play catch up with my recipes and subsequent photos, 2. You'll get more crappy phone pictures of various foods I've been eating for the sole purpose of trying to take up space (who cares what I'm eating, really?), 3. I'll half-ass it with the image editing program and you'll get the new recipes with sub-par pictures.

Oy vey, let's hope it's not option 3.

Anyways, these cupcakes were the result of a bit of improvisation. Back in May my Maid of Honor duties included throwing a small bachlorette party for my best friend, Jenn. Although she isn't getting married until Columbus Day Weekend, she was moving to Texas at the end of that month. I asked her what baked good she wanted me to make and she immediately said "vanilla cupcakes!"

Jenn and Me in High School at her surprise 16th Birthday Party
(actually her surprise 4th Birthday Party, since she's a Leap Year baby!)

Really? Just vanilla? Oh, that simply would not do.

So I decided to make vanilla cupcakes, filled with strawberry mousse, and topped with vanilla bean buttercream. I had such good intentions, but with everything else I had to do for the evening I had missed buying some key ingredients--namely, vanilla beans and confectioner's sugar for the buttercream. Oops! And it was midnight the night before the party. I'd be at work all the next day and unable to finish the cupcakes.

Thankfully, the moussse came out a lot thicker than I'd expected, and I decided to just pipe it on top of the cupcakes like frosting. Ta-daaa! Jenn loved them, and I was able to contribute these fun, girly baked goods to the event. Plus I also won the photo scavenger hunt and we all got pleasantly tipsy as we danced around downtown to celebrate Jenn and her upcoming milestone.

Out on the Town!

In retrospect, the mousse came out stiffer than expected because I tried to double the recipe and I am pretty sure I added too much gelatin--so if you want to try to use it in place of frosting, add a bit more gelatin than the recipe calls for. This mousse was sweet, flavorful, and fresh and I imagine it would have been a lovely filling for the cupcakes or perfect on its own with some strawberries on the side.

Strawberry Mousse
(From Hubpages)

  • One pound of strawberries, cleaned with the stems removed
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ cup sugar
  • One envelope of unflavored gelatin
  • Two cups of whipped cream

In a small sauce pan heat water, sugar, and unflavored gelatin on low heat until the gelatin and sugar are dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.

Pour the strawberries into a food processor and process on high until smooth.

Combine the contents of the sauce pan and the strawberries into a large mixing bowl. Fold in the whipped cream until completely combined. You can also mix in some sliced fresh strawberries with the whipped cream. Refrigerate for a minimum of one hour, preferably overnight.

(Hey did you see my post about my upcoming Walk for Autism Speaks? My goal is $500 and any little bit helps!)