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Peppermint Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting

by Alaina on December 17, 2014 · 0 comments

It’s been such a long time since I posted a baking recipe! I still bake here and there for my co-workers, and I always love to bake goodies to give as Christmas presents.This year I’ll be making dark chocolate, cherry, pistachio cookies and cranberry, white chocolate chip, NUTELLA cookies! I’ve made the former many times, but the latter will be a new recipe. I’m excited to see how it turns out. Smile

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Of course this recipe is a easy-peasy as it comes. The base of these cupcakes are from a box of classic yellow cake mix. I added the requisite 1 cup of water, 1/4 cup of vegetable oil and three eggs, and I added 2 teaspoons of peppermint extract to add some extra “holiday” flavor. I then baked the 24 cupcakes at 350* for 18 minutes. They came out amazingly moist with just the right amount of peppermint.

The only problem came when I made the frosting. As you can tell by the picture above, it didn’t quite stay in the shape of what cupcake frosting should be. I waited until the cupcakes were cool but they just kind of melted into a…blob of chocolate frosting. Nonetheless it tasted delicious! Happy with the flavor, not so much the presentation.

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Chocolate Frosting

1/4 cup margarine, melted (Oops, forgot to do this part!)
1/2 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups confectioner sugar

In a large bowl, beat margarine and cocoa together until combined. Add milk and vanilla; beat until smooth. Gradually beat in confectioners’ sugar until desired consistency is achieved. Adjust with more milk or confectioners’ sugar if necessary. I ended up adding an extra 1/2 cup of sugar to get a thicker consistency.

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My aunt sent David and I this BEAUTIFUL wreath for Christmas. It looks great on our door!

The happiest of holidays to you all! What is your favorite baked good during the Christmas/Hanukkah season?


Race #30: Providence Jingle Bell 5K

by Alaina on December 16, 2014 · 3 comments

Woo! I am done! I have successfully completed my 30 races in 2014 challenge! My final run was this past Sunday in Providence: The Jingle Bell 5K. I’ve ran this race 2 times before and always enjoyed the energy and playfulness around this particular one. People were all dressed up and you could hear the sound of jingle bells and cowbells as you ran through downtown Providence and along the river.

The course is nice and flat, with just a few inclines going over the bridges. I kept it steady and ended up finishing just under 31 minutes.

After I finished, David grabbed my phone and pretty much held down the button so that he could take pictures. He and my dad were there to cheer me on as I was the only one running this one.

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I am spent! Oh no, wait, I’m OK. I’m happy that I finished this challenge. Smile with tongue out

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Time: 30:53
Pace: 9:56
Division: 160/476
Overall: 540/1322

Not too shabby I would say! Next up is…NOTHING! I haven’t signed up for any races next year, although I am tempted to do the BAA Medley as my only races for the year. We’ll see how I feel come January 26th when they open the registration. Smile

What (if any) challenges have you overcome this past year??


I Did It!!!

by Alaina on December 15, 2014 · 4 comments

I finished my 30 races in 2014 challenge!! My last race was yesterday: the Providence Jingle Bell 5K. I’ll have a recap up by tomorrow (hoped to have it up by today but I was called in to work). And I’ll have a more comprehensive overview of my thoughts on the challenge up by the end of the week.

Until then, I’m resting and hopefully introducing myself to some yoga. My legs are tight! :-)