For the first time in many, many years, we have family close by. Close enough to have an emergency contact for our children’s school forms and Sunday dinners. Close enough to have relatives at soccer games and a full house to share holidays with. When you go many years without those things, you sort of forget what it is like. Don’t get me wrong, we have created family with many wonderful people throughout the years. We have been blessed to have lively holiday dinners and had many, many, people to rely on. We just were not related to them. Having my brother (and my sister-in-law too) down the road has been a blessing for us. My brother moved this week, and no longer will be a “hey, want to come over for dinner” distance from us. I am happy for him, truly, but we all will miss him terribly. He is a wonderful uncle and it has been a gift to be able to spend so much time with him.
His work friends had a going away get together for him at his favorite home away from home, and I brought these cupcakes to send him off. These seemed like cupcakes meant for boys. They are not of course, just for boys, but they were totally appropriate to eat while drinking Guinness and actual Irish Car Bombs. I am happy to report that they were a hit.
I am not a fan of Guinness, but I love to cook with it. I had the Guinness Cupcakes from Alexandria Cupcake, and they ended up being my favorite flavor, I was shocked! It doesn’t really taste like stout, but it is a rich, deep flavor. The Bailey’s frosting is perfect on top and the caramel sauce has a little bit of kick from the Jameson. The caramel sauce is a keeper. The perfect consistency, and so pretty. If you need more in-depth instruction on making caramel, I include step-by-step instruction here. The cupcake recipe is from Smitten Kitchen and the caramel is from Gourmet.
*edited to add* I apologize if my original title offended anyone. I truly did not realize that it was in poor taste. Here in America, it is a popular drink, a Guinness with a shot of Bailey’s and Irish whiskey dropped in it. You can get them in any Irish bar, so it never occurred to me that it might be insensitive. I am really sorry, I never want to make anyone uncomfortable, so I changed the title.
1 cup Dixie Crystals sugar
1/4 cup water
6 Tablespoons Jameson Irish Whiskey
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup Guinness
1 cup butter
3/4 cup cocoa powder
2 cups flour
2 cups Dixie Crystals sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup sour cream
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
3 cups Dixie Crystals confectioners sugar
1/4 − 1/2 cup Bailey’s
Bring sugar to a boil over medium-high heat, without stirring, until the sugar is deep golden brown. It takes about 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and add the cream. Whisk until it is smooth. Let cool and transfer to a container. I like to use a squeeze bottle, it makes the decorating easier.
Beat the butter in the bowl of an electric mixer. Add 1 cup sugar, beat until combined, gradually add remaining sugar. Add the Baileys until the frosting is desired consistency. Add more Bailey’s or sugar if needed.
I know that I will get a few emails and comments asking how to make these alcohol-fee, and completely respect the choice to not use alcohol. But in this case, I think that there really is no substitute and would probably make something else. Also, these cupcakes are for adults only. Or in this case, people that may not be actual adults (I’m looking at you Grossman) but over the age of 21.
Disclaimer: I have an ongoing relationship with Dixie Crystals. Opinions are my own.