Okay, so I’m not Martha.

I just had to prove it one more time today.  It’s a sad tale of a doomed batch of cupcakes.  I do read M.S. Living mag quite often and occasionally delve into a recipe when I find one that looks like it’s worth all the fuss. Martha Stewart is not known for “quick and easy” recipes, of course.  So I found these wonderful-looking “Boston Cream Pie” cupcakes in the newest issue.  It’s not something that I’m fond of but hubby absolutely loves Boston cream pie, so I decided to get into it so he’d have them for watching the Super Bowl.

First problem came when I was getting out the ingredients to make the cupcake batter and realized, too late, that it called for “cake flour,” which is not an ingredient I keep on hand.  I had just come from the grocery store and I was NOT going back.  So I found a box of cake mix in my cupboard.  Who’s gonna know?  Made the cupcakes with no problem.

On to the cream filling.  I am going along and wondering just exactly why my custard isn’t thickening up worth a darn.  I figured maybe it would be okay after refrigeration.  Then I decided to taste it.  Ack! Phooey! Yuk!  OMG it was awful.  I cannot even describe the incredibly horrible taste.  Salty, bitter, nasty….????

I finally decided to look at the ingredients again and I saw no problem with what I put in–except for one tiny little thing.  Last time I opened cornstarch and baking soda, I put each of them in plastic containers and marked them with my label maker.  We have trouble with weevils if we don’t keep everything really sealed well.  Um..I think I mixed up the labels for the cornstarch and baking soda.  And….they are not interchangeable, are they?

So, on to plan B for the filling.  I had a box of vanilla cook & serve pudding in the pantry.  So now, instead of a Martha Stewart recipe, it’s more like Sandra Lee’s semi-home made.  But still okay.

So after the filling set up overnight, this morning I was on to the chocolate ganache topping, which looked really easy.  Except, it was just too thin and wanted to “run” instead of “drizzle” down my cupcakes.  So I melted and added more chocolate to it and it was fine.  It’s a very messy process, but licking the “accidents” is part of the fun, okay?

I separated out a few cupcakes to give to my brother and sister-in-law later and put the rest in a plastic sheet cake container and put them in the fridge.  All was well until we ate some and I went to return the rest to the fridge.  It slipped, I dropped it and cupcakes went flying onto the floor.  Only 3 remained in the container.  The rest were upside down and in pieces.  Lucky for my bro and his wife that THEIRS were safe from the devastation and destruction. 

So, if there’s a moral to this story, I guess it’s this:  If you’re not Martha and you attempt one of her recipes, be prepared to A) be flexible and learn to accept substitutions, B) have a well-stocked pantry that will let you do so, and C) have a sense of humor. 

And no, I’m sorry, there will be no photos of my doomed cupcakes.  Even before the destruction they just weren’t that pretty.  I could, of course, scan in the lovely photo from M.S. Living magazine (it was a full page shot), but not only would I be violating copyright laws, nobody would believe it anyway.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Albert C
    Feb 04, 2009 @ 16:49:11

    Judi, you can’t make this stuff up – I got a good chuckle with the ‘Flying Cupcakes’…… oh, and I’m sure you know Martha S. Herself is famous for leaving out an ingredient or so when passing along recipes….so nobody can make it better than she can !

  2. chickadeeworkshop
    Feb 04, 2009 @ 22:41:17

    Unfortunately, I am responsible for every issue here, from start to finish. I even realized later why my chocolate was thin. I only put half the amount in that was called for….thinking each block was an ounce, when it was a 1/2 ounce. I just started cooking yesterday, ahem. But it doesn’t surprise me to hear that Martha would do what you said. She’s a trip.

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