Peanut Butter Cupcakes

A few days ago, I baked peanut butter cupcakes with peanut butter frosting and chocolate ganache, a recipe I found from the website Ming Makes Cupcakes.  I’ve tried baking a couple of Ming’s cupcakes and they’re all wonderful.  My favorite so far however is this peanut butter cupcake.  Both the cupcake and the frosting are so rich and full of peanut butter flavor.  The addition of the chocolate on top really compliments the rest of the cupcake.

If you are looking to bake something from Ming’s site, I suggest Cupcake 5 for a very very chocolate-y treat, Cupcake 10 for a tasty apple-caramel combo, Cupcake 6 for a banana-maple delight, and of course, Cupcake 17 if you are a peanut butter lover.  I plan to try many more of her recipes and hopefully will share my experiments and photos here!

I didn’t realize my camera was set on the vibrant setting so the chocolate looks very dark, but here are some photos along with the recipe.

Taken with a Nikon D90

Peanut Butter Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting and Chocolate Ganache
from mingmakescupcakes.yolasite.com
CUPCAKES
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
pinch of cinnamon
3/4 stick butter, room temp
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg
1/2 cup milk

Mix flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. In a separate bowl, mix butter, peanut butter, and brown sugar until blended. Add vanilla and egg. Add milk and flour mixture alternately while still mixing. Pour into lined cupcake pan. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes, or until toothpick comes out almost clean.

GANACHE
3/4 cup chocolate chips
1/4 cup heavy cream

Melt chocolate and cream in metal bowl set in simmering water.

FROSTING
1 cup peanut butter
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar
6 T milk

Beat peanut butter and vanilla until blended. Add 3 T milk and sugar while beating. Add the rest of the milk and sugar and beat until smooth.  If needed, add a couple more tablespoons milk.

[Update]

Here’s another picture of this cupcake that I took back in May when I first tried this recipe.

Taken with a Nikon D70s

Diana Lens

I’ve always enjoyed experimenting with different types of cameras.  From disposable to polaroid to smart phones, I find it fun to try out new types of photography.  For Christmas, my boyfriend gave me a Diana lens for my Nikon DSLR.  I’ve been eying the Diana film camera for a while, but kept having second thoughts because of the lack of my Holga camera usage.  Even though there is a completely different experience when using film cameras, I still like having my photos easily available and having no limits when using a digital camera.  The Diana lens is a perfect fit for me to still experiment with the toy camera effect without having to go through the process of developing film.

Here are a few photos from my first test run.  The lens creates very soft and dream-like photos.  For these, I inserted a piece of construction paper with a small hole between the lens and the camera to create the vignetting.  It’s challenging to get the lighting and focus correct, but I love the effect! I can’t wait to take these lens out again!

Taken with Diana lens on Nikon D90

My love for baking

I’m not sure when my love for baking began, but I remember my first baking photography shoot. I was in high school and had found an amazing recipe from allrecipes.com for gooey cinnamon buns.  These tasted so good and I couldn’t believe that I was able to commit three hours into making something that happened to turn out so perfect!  I now still love to bake and find great joy in being able to self-satisfy my sweet tooth (: On top of that, I also love photographing baked goods!

I recently found an interesting chocolate cookie recipe from Saveur magazine that was originally from a New York Times cookbook.  This is no ordinary chocolate chip cookie as both the texture and the ingredients differ from your normal soft and chunky-chocolate type of cookie.  The cookies are very flat, crispy, yet chewy, and have an interesting mixture of chocolate, nuts, and butter.

The recipe calls for shaved chocolate which I learned is NOT easy to make! Attempting to shave a large piece of chocolate using a slicer/grater is hard work.  On top of that, I accidentally shaved three times the amount needed, but I guess this means I won’t have to go through sticky hands and sore forearms again the next time I make these!

I recommend this recipe for those who like a thin, buttery, and crunchy bite.  The cookies are delightful!

Taken with a Nikon D5000 (shortly before I returned it for a D90)

First post!

I’m very excited to finally have a new blog.  The last time I had (and regularly maintained) a photography blog was mostly during my high school days.  My xanga blog began in 2005 (mid-high school) and lasted until 2008 (mid-undergrad)–which was when college seemed to have taken over most of my life.  Now with the exams, group projects, and crazy late nights all pushed out of the way, I seem to have gotten my photography vibe back!

Since I don’t have my new photos with me at the moment, here’s an old photo I took during a short trip to Seattle in October.

Taken with iPhone 4 on Camera+

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© 2017 Tiffany Dang

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