TWD: Cocoa-Buttermilk Birthday Cake

Happy 2010!

Two years ago this week, Laurie of Slush posted about a fabulous cookbook she received for Christmas. She decided to bake her way through the book, one recipe at a time, and she asked if anyone wanted to join her. What started out as a few bloggers chatting about recipes and comparing tips and tricks has evolved into a huge online baking group. Although I've only been baking along for a few months now, it's been a lot of fun and has inspired me to try things in the kitchen that I might not have otherwise! It's also inspired me to want to learn to take better photos... something I'll talk about in an upcoming post!

So happy birthday
Tuesdays with Dorie! And thanks to Laurie for a fabulous idea and the dedication and enthusiasm to share it with the rest of us! I think it just goes to show that you never know how far something you start can reach... an inspiring thought for the year ahead.

For this week's recipe, Laurie picked two (based on votes from the group) and allowed us to choose which one we wanted to try. Although Tarte Tatin sounds oh-so-french and fabulous (especially since I just watched Julie and Julia last weekend!) I had to go with the Cocoa-Buttermilk Birthday Cake. It's just so appropriate for a celebration and for ringing in the new year.

I made only a quarter of the recipe... which made 12 mini cupcakes. I got a mini cupcake pan for Christmas (thanks, Mom!) and was looking for any excuse to try it out. And frankly I just love mini desserts. Why is it that eating two or three mini desserts feels so much better for you than one full size dessert?! The cake turned out light and fluffy, but a little crumbly. The recipe calls for a chocolate malt frosting, which sounds delish, but I didn't have any malted milk powder. So I whipped up a quick peanut butter buttercream instead. Chocolate and pb is a favorite combination in the LITK household! The cupcakes turned out great... although I just might have eaten most of them myself.

TIP: I didn't have any buttermilk, so I tried a tip I've read on several blogs. I poured a little white vinegar in my measuring cup, then filled it to the needed level with milk. I let that sit for about 10 minutes while I did the rest of the mixing. Buttermilk is just curdled milk, and the acidity is the vinegar apparently creates the same reaction! (I've also read you can use lemon juice... to make one cup of "buttermilk" use 1 T.vinegar or lemon juice and fill to the one cup line with milk!) It worked like a charm... and much easier than keeping buttermilk on hand.


  1. Yum...peanut butter and chocolate! They look great! And who doesn't love a mini cupcake...or a mini anything, for that matter.

  2. Mmm, so cute! Another plus about using a mini cupcake pan is that you still seem to get a lot even when you reduce the recipe.