The Fall and Rise of Cupcakes at Ruger
Wednesday, 24 March 2010 13:00

Why are cupcakes relevant to this site?  Well, we have new neighbors.  With a Labrador.  Who has jingly tags. (Oh, dearie.  Let the barking commence.)  So, hoping to start off on the right foot, I wanted to make some cupcakes to take over when I introduced myself.  And give them my phone numbers.  In case my hooligans start buggin' them.  I regularly sling baked goods to my neighbors, because, let's face it.  It can get loud over here, even when I have my thumb on the horde; which is always. I am not above bribery.

So, on Monday night, I decided to make PW's The Best Chocolate Sheet Cake. Ever. as cupcakes.  However, silly me didn't remember that when I made this sheet cake, it rose a little too fast.  And that which rises quickly tends to fall just as dramatically at high altitude.  We are officially at 5,480 feet.  Which means less air pressure.  Which means good luck with your formerly flawless baking.  And potatoes take about a zillion years to bake.  Argh.

So, here is the first attempt, using PW's recipe with no modifications:

cupcake _failure

Moon Craters. <sigh>

They bubbled up fast, looked like they might hold and then sunk like chickens in the La Brea tar pits. 

Incidentally, I don't think there were chickens in prehistoric times, but this just came to my mind.  I am turning into my father, evidently.  He has a penchant for making sayings up as he goes.  However, the 'sayings' here, be they made up or traditional, will remain clean, tho prolly not nearly as funny as my dad's.

They tasted good, but they were the UGLIEST THINGS I have ever made.  There was no way in Hades that I was going to give them to anyone and we certainly weren't going to eat all of them ourselves.  So with much guilt, I tossed them in the trash.  The little bits that where baked onto the muffin tins went to the dogs. 

Please, do not send me emails about the dangers of chocolate for dogs.  I know all about that.  There is no way even a whole chocolate cupcake split up amongst nine Dachshunds is going to give them enough theobromine to make their nervous systems shut down.  See?  Told you I understood.

And this was just bits, anyway.  Nowhere near a whole cupcake.


Tania goes to town on the leftover cupcake bits.  Don't "leftover bits" sound good?

So it was late.  And I was bummed.  I needed to think about what I was going to do to that recipe to fix it.  Because I had cupcakes to give away, dangit.  And I wasn't going to give up.  Grrrr.  So I slept on it and dreamed of pretty cupcakes.  And I came up with something that worked.  For my high altitude friends, I made the following modifications to PW's recipe above:

  • Flour: upped it to 2 1/2 cups, though I will try 2 1/4 next time.
  • Sugar: lowered it to 1 1/2 cups, though I will try 1 3/4 next time
  • Eggs & Buttermilk: brought to room temperature
  • Baking Soda: reduced to a little less than 3/4 tsp
  • Oven temp: raised it to 375 degrees
  • Cook time: exactly 15 minutes

And I had SUCCESS:



And post sanding sugar:



Cream cheese frosting.  YUM!  Very good!  The neighbors are super nice and we are looking forward to being their good neighbors.  Jody brought up the fact that both times I've baked successful cupcakes this month (remember the red velvets?), there was a monster snow storm.  So, for all of us here in Colorado, I am not planning on more cupcakes anytime soon.


Mother Nature's frosting; perfectly beautiful!


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Last Updated on Saturday, 27 March 2010 07:43