Late Night Cupcake

So one of the chefs that I know from work has this cool, fair-to-middling-level-cheffy blog called Food on the Dole where he describes all the food he’s been eating/interested in.

In an interview, he said he started the blog because he had this image of people’s food blogs being “Here’s this cupcake I ate last night.”

I’ll take up that gauntlet.  Here’s my cupcake-I-ate-last-night post.

It was a long day.  A birthday party for 60 year old woman where both the holocaust and eye infections were discussed in depth and at length.  With two hours to kill before an employee meeting, a judgement-impaired trip to the anti-cruelty society’s dog room (I now want to adopt about 25 other dogs).  An unpleasant surprise waiting at home as the result of leaving my own sweet puppy unattended for too many hours.  Sweltering heat.  General malaise.  The sort of day that when you open your door and put down your bag, even though you live alone, an actual heaving sigh escapes, before your jumping, deliriously happy, doe-eyed puppy smothers you with soul-washing attention and love.

However, sometimes puppy love is not enough.  Sometimes you need to supplement with cupcakes.

I don’t keep cream cheese around my house.  That’s just asking for trouble.  Thankfully, the birthday ladies wanted to make cupcakes, and I had swiped their extra frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting

1 stick butter, room temp
8 oz cream cheese, room temp
2-3 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla

With an eletric mixer, beat together cream cheese and butter until fluffy.  Add 2 – 3 cups of powdered sugar until desired taste and consistency are reached.  Add vanilla.

I have a piping bag, but needed the cupcake right away so I did the ol’ ziploc bag trick

I realize the tape on my piping tip is blazingly bright. I figured even if someone in culinary school wanted to lift my tip, they wouldn't claim ownership to something so obnoxiously pink. Only me.

I popped one of my frozen Rhubarb muffins in the toaster oven and then waited what seemed an impossibly long time for it to be cool enough to frost. Finally…

I ate it like this:

which if you’ve never tried it, you should.

The things I categorize as comfort food are either steeped in nostalgia or have a particular transporting quality that acts as a salve for minor annoyance.  I ate this cupcake bite by bite.  I didn’t scarf.  I didn’t gorge.  I paid particular attention to the sensation of my teeth sinking in. Fluffy, cloud-like cake.  Sweet, tangy, cool, frosting which oozed lushly out of the cupcake sandwich.  Tart, tart rhubarb punctuating more feather crumbed cake.  It was like that cupcake gave me a bear hug, smoothed my hair back, told me, “Don’t worry, you’re going to be just fine.”  I felt the twisted knots that have set up permanent camp in my shoulders untwist just a little bit.  It seemed like I could breathe better.  The air was sweeter. The evening’s prospects brighter. My puppy excitedly cleaned up the falling crumbs in a way that made me laugh out loud.

I don’t usually recommend medicating with food, but on this particular evening, it was necessary and just what I wanted.  It didn’t bring me back to my childhood or happier times. This was the happier times. The present had suddenly gone perfect.  And it gave me a great excuse to walk the dog a little longer and enjoy the formerly-annoying-but-in-the-moment-pleasantly-balmy evening air.

Thank god for cupcakes is all I can say. And porter, which I had on my porch after the walk.

All better now.


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