Post-Valentine’s Day Wrap-up

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These Chocolate Stout Donuts from Bakers Royale are super awesome. These ones that I made were a surprise for my boyfriend for Valentine’s Day, so I didn’t post them up before the holiday, but I’d definitely suggest them for any occasion.

IMG_5557They’re made with Guinness Extra Stout and I subbed almond milk for the milk and water in the recipe. They turned out super delicious. The frosting tastes exactly like donut shop frosting.


I also made my boyfriend a candy, bourbon, and bacon rose bouquet to go with the donuts. He really loved this, especially the bacon roses. I used these instructions to make them, but instead of drilling holes in the mini muffin tin to drain the bacon grease (no way I’m going to ruin a baking pan for these!), I put a cookie sheet over the top of the bacon in the muffin pan and drained the grease into a bowl periodically. If you like well-cooked bacon, I’d suggest baking them twice as long as those instructions say, and also turning them over about halfway through so that the bottoms of the bacon get cooked well too.

IMG_5568Mmmm…bourbon and bacon. If I make the bacon roses again, I’m going to dip them in chocolate next time!

I hope you had a fun Valentine’s Day with your loved ones.


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Pyramid Alehouse Beer-Infused Cupcake Competition #SFBeerWeek

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IMG_5506_2Last year when I heard about the Pyramid Beer-Infused Cupcake competition, I was itching to go, but I got sick that weekend and decided not to trek up to the Bay Area to eat cupcakes and beer, since it was probably the last thing I needed then.

Amazingly enough, this year I ALSO got sick not long before this competition, but I couldn’t pass it up again. It’s just too tempting. BEER and CUPCAKES? Yes, please. I’m almost all better now, so a little beer and beer cupcakes won’t hurt right?


Since it is SF Beer Week, the boyfriend and I decided to make a weekend out of it and stay in San Francisco, do a little beer tasting at Faction Brewing and spirit tasting at St. George Spirits in Alameda, and finish up with beer cupcakes at Pyramid Alehouse in Walnut Creek the next day.


People from all over sent in cupcake recipes featuring one of the Pyramid beers. From the entries, Pyramid narrowed down the recipes to three finalists, and then baked their cupcakes, paired with the appropriate beer, for us to sample and choose our favorite of the three. It’s a pretty fantastic little event considering we got three full sized cupcakes and a 5-6 oz beer for each, all for $10!

Here were our choices:

A Maple Pecan Ale Cake made with Pyramid Hefeweizen, topped with a Maple Pecan Cream Cheese Frosting paired with Pyramid Hefeweizen

IMG_5500A Strawberry Blonde Saison Cupcake made with Pyramid Strawberry Blonde Saison, topped with Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting and Chocolate Stout Glaze paired with the Pyramid Strawberry Blonde Saison

IMG_5499A Crème-brew-lée Salted Caramel-filled Cupcake made with Pyramid Outburst Imperial IPA, topped with  Salted Caramel Frosting paired with the Pyramid Outburst Imperial IPA


After sampling all of the cupcakes, I decided I liked the Maple Pecan cupcake the most. It was sweet, but not too sweet and had the consistency of a muffin, which I’m realizing I like more nowadays. It’s the only one I was able to finish too.


The Strawberry cupcake was pretty good, had a great delicate frosting, but was edging towards the “too sweet” category. The Salted Caramel cupcake was by far my least favorite, because it tried to do too much and ended up being overly sweet and far too rich to eat more than a couple of bites before those bites started to seem like a mistake. It also had some kind of sticky caramel filling that didn’t compliment the cupcake. I would have preferred to have the caramel frosting as the filling and just a drizzle of something sweet on top instead of more thick sugary frosting.

IMG_5502Before I left, I filled out the ballot, circling my favorite flavor, and turned it into the ballot box. I wonder which cupcake will win the whole shebang. I have a feeling it will come down to the Maple Pecan or the Strawberry cupcake as those seemed to be the most popular with the folks sitting near me.

I think next year I might enter the contest and come up with my own Pyramid beer-infused cupcake recipe. They have so many beers to choose from, I better start drinking now.


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