foodie fridays: patriotic cupcakes

It’s hard to believe that on Monday, our country will celebrate it’s 235th birthday.

My, how times flies…

If Thomas Jefferson were alive today, don’t you think he would totally party?

Pretty sure he would, but he’d have to ditch that white powdered wig – it’s so 1700.

Anyways, the 4th of July is one of my favorite holidays to celebrate because it really is one GIANT party. From the fireworks to barbecues to homemade ice cream, it all has a special in my heart.

On Monday I did a giveaway,  and asked for people to leave a comment describing their favorite memory of the 4th. I figured it was only fair to share one of mine, so here goes:

I grew up in a suburb outside Wichita, KS. Population: a few thousand. Since legit fireworks weren’t allowed in the big city, everyone would flock to the burbs and buy fireworks from these big ol’ tents that were pitched off the side of our little highway town.

I remember my parents giving us an allowance to buy fireworks, but that never worked, because our family somehow got nominated to put on the fireworks show in our cul-de-sac every year. I’m pretty sure it was because of my little brother Jordan and his satanic-but-entertaining pyro skills, but I like to pretend it’s because we were the “cool” family. So needless to say, we always ended up buying an obscene amount of fireworks and the allowances were insufficient to meet our goals.

Well, I distinctly remember one year having the entire block gather around our driveway to watch Jordan wage roman candle wars, conduct artillery shell explosions, practice Saturn missile dodging, and detonate an entire lighting brick of black cats (which is probably why I’m deaf).  It was probably shaping up to be the greatest firework display in town history, and with the night still young, word began to spread. So, people from two blocks down started to show up to watch our street’s fireworks. Then, some more people came.

And then some more.

It was to get close to 10pm and we had a huge crowd of people around our cul-de-sac. And that’s when – I kid you not – the lame cops of little Andover, KS came trolling through our street. I have never heard more people yell “Booooo!” in my life.

Of course, we weren’t going to keep shooting off fireworks until midnight. Okay – maybe we could have. But literally the cop car could barely make it through the street because of all the firework fallout and debris. Hilariously, it took the police a good 10 minutes to cruise through the street, getting shamefully booed the whole way down.

So that’s my favorite story.  I probably could thrown in a few specific favorites, like my mom’s homemade ice cream, my Grandpa Ray’s smile as he watch the Saturn missiles, and of course…lighting snakes. I still love those creepy things.

And, before I forget, you should try and make these patriotic cupcakes on Monday. They might be my new favorite thing. And who knows, if Thomas Jefferson shows up at your party and he is a total creep, you can keep him busy with these tasty, red-white-and-blue desserts.

Happy Birthday America!

Patriotic Cupcakes

(adapted from Can You Stay For Dinner?)

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes

Makes 12 cupcakes

Ingredients:
for the cupcakes:
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 Tablespoons butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
for the frosting:
1 stick butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugars
1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
sprinkles for garnish
red and blue food coloring


Directions:
for the cupcakes:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium size bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside. Cream together the butter and sugar and then add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the vanilla. Alternately add the dry ingredients until combined. Divide batter into three separate bowls. Tint each bowl with a few drops of food coloring: one red, one blue, and leave one bowl white.  Drop spoonfuls of each colored batter into the cupcake liners until they are 3/4 full. When all the liners are filled, use a toothpick to swirl the batter a few times. Use a clean toothpick for each cupcake so that you keep the colors clean, and don’t swirl too much or you’ll mix the colors into a brown tone. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown. 
for the frosting:
Cream together  butter with powdered sugar. Once smooth, add vanilla extract. Beat until light and fluffy.Scoop buttercream into large plastic bag fitted with a pastry tip. Frost cupcakes and then put sprinkles on top before serving.

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2 Responses to “foodie fridays: patriotic cupcakes”

  1. #
    1
    Krista — July 1, 2011 at 6:54 pm

    Damn, I missed your first giveaway!! Those cupcakes look really yummy!

  2. #
    2
    Anonymous — July 2, 2011 at 2:03 pm

    The pictures of these little treats are fabulous! I have SO many fond memories of our Andover 4th of July's. Remember Jordan allegedly sending a missile into Mallory Tangeman's forehead? Dan and Brad and Dad using snowshovels to clear the street of firework casings? Us not daring to light even so much as a parachute two inches over the Bishop's “property line” in the street?
    Stephanie's crazy crew including Kendra, Sara Peake, Cody, et al. Watching the fireworks from the Geiser's front yard. St. Vinny's selling fireworks out of the gym?

    Ah, Andover.

    Happy 4th! Love, Moomers

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