High Maintenance…

Way back in the day some of you might remember a little movie called When Harry Met Sally. And while the movie has many a memorable moment or two (never fake an orgasm ladies, make the man work harder ;) ),the one we will be discussing today is the idea that women fall into two categories, low or high maintenance. Personally, I think all women are high maintenance. I can get away with saying that since I am one. :P

Now before you go off and say, but I’m not high maintenance (you probably soooo are, everyone who says that is usually the worst), I’m not saying that you are a demanding bitch. But I can assure you that at some level, all women (and some men) are high maintenance. I’m a pretty laid back person. I get along with most people. Heck, I am just coming from a senior citizen potluck that they have at my gym (I rehab my injuries in the senior classes). But there are some aspects in my life where I am super high maintenance. We wont go into that since it’s best you all have a lovely opinion of me.

One area that I never used to be high maintenance at until I moved to the Seattle area is coffee. I just took it however they handed it over to me. Who knew I was suppose to tell the person making my coffee exactly how I wanted it? I mean, I thought I just took whatever they gave me and tipped them a dollar to do so. :) But I have gone from a Venti Mocha (taking it just how they gave it to me) to a Grande, Non-Fat, Sugar Free, Half Caf, Cinnamon Dolce, No Whip (at least that is what I have been drinking lately). Wow, what a snob I have become. I don’t feel snobby about it up here, but when I go back down to Phoenix the people usually look at me like I am insane.

One beverage that I am a fan of and don’t mess with all that much in my ordering is the Caramel Macchiato. And though it is a wonderful beverage, it’s not so kind in the calorie department. So what did I decide to do? Make it worse for you! Go Peabody. That’s right, I decided (as suggested by a reader) to make the Caramel Macchiato into cupcake form. I mean, buttercream frosting always trumps that wimpy whipped cream they throw on there.

Caramel Macchiato Cupcakes

1 ½ cups self-rising flour

1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 ½ cups superfine sugar

4 large eggs, at room temperature

1 cup Starbucks Bottled Caramel Frappuccino

3 TBSP store bought caramel sauce

1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a small bowl, combine the flours. Set aside.

In a large bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugar gradually and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes.

Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Add the caramel and beat for an additional 2 minutes.

Add the dry ingredients in three parts, alternating with the Frappuccino and vanilla. With each addition, beat until the ingredients are incorporated but do not over beat.

Using a rubber spatula, scrape down the batter in the bowl to make sure the ingredients are well blended. Carefully spoon the batter into the cupcake liners, filling them about three-quarters full. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center of the cupcake comes out clean.

Let cool for15 minutes. Remove from the pans and cool completely on a wire rack before frosting.

Cupcake recipe adapted from More From Magnolia: Recipes from the World Famous Bakery and Allysa Torey’s Home Kitchen by Allysa Torey

Caramel Italian Buttercream Frosting

1 cup sugar

¼ cup water

5 egg whites

¼ cup sugar

2 cups unsalted butter , room temperature, cut into TBPS

4 TBSP caramel sauce (store bought is just fine), plus more to drizzle over cupcakes

Boil 1 cup sugar and ¼ cup water over medium heat until it reaches 245F. As it cooks begin meringue so it’s ready when syrup is done.

Whip egg whites with a wire whisk in a stand up mixer on high until soft peaks form. About 1-2 minutes. Sprinkle in ¼ cup sugar. Beat.

Slowly pour the hot syrup into the meringue steadily with the mixer still on high.

Beat the frosting for 7-10 minutes until the outside of the bowl has cooled down to room temperature.

Beat in butter by the tablespoon. The butter will deflate the frosting a bit.

When all butter is incorporated add caramel sauce. Mix for about a minute. Frost cooled cupcakes. Drizzle with extra caramel sauce if desired.

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  1. I’d like to think I am not high maintenance, but there are some things I’m really picky about. I think it’s ok as long as you aren’t completely a pain!

    Those cupcakes look great! I got a cupcake decorating set for Christmas that I need to try using.

  2. Mmmhhh, fantastic cupcakes!



  3. I think I love you for this recipe alone. I know what I am doing with my Sunday afternoon.

  4. I didn’t think it could be worse but you just took a Caramel Macchiato there with these cupcakes. They look amazing and are making very hungry right now.

  5. i worked for starbucks in college and now, i am super picky about my coffee drinks, snob that i am ;)

    these cupcakes look amazing and yes, caramel buttercream trumps whipped cream.

  6. Oh my…instant salivation beginning…NOW! (I’m really not high maintenance :)

  7. This post makes extra happy. Not only are those cupcakes dangerously delicious looking (one bottle of caramel frappacino on grocery list, check) but I am also extremely happily moving to Seattle!!! I can’t wait to become a high maintenance coffee consumer and Pacific Northwesterner.

    Tell me, what do I have to do, short of worship, to get the job of Peabody’s Taste Tester?!

  8. waaaaiiiit a minute….TWO CUPS of butter for the frosting?

  9. Love this recipe ! Your cupcakes are beautiful.

  10. double YUM! i have a weakness for caramel…

  11. yummy and cute cupcakes!

  12. Yum!

  13. So funny…I just watched When Harry met Sally the other night. I am low maintenance. Ask my husband. I am the youngest of 10 kids so being high maintenance wasn’t an option. I always love your posts and your pictures are amazing. You should give photography tips because you KNOW what you are doing girl.

  14. I never order caramel macchiatos because I love black coffee…but in cupcake form I know I would LOVE them!

  15. Born and raised in Seattle and I don’t drink coffee (I know, I know). However, these cupcakes? Yes, please. FYI: high maintenance and proud of it.

  16. These sound fantastic!! Great idea!

    Question: Does it have to be store-bought caramel sauce in the cupcake? Couldn’t you use homemade caramel from the frosting?

  17. A one stop cupcake for all that is best in the world.

  18. I think I am high maintenance, but I am easy on the coffee!!! Black and bitter as it comes!!!
    The cupcakes are a delight to just look at….for now it is all I can do…over-indulge a bit in the holidays!!!

  19. oh I love coffee and these must be so so good.

  20. Oh man, coffee snobs are the worst… just kidding :)

    As a guy I’m going to sit on the sideline during the maintenance debate, but I’ll agree it can happen for both sexes. Some guys spend quite a pretty penny on clothes.

    Oh right cupcakes… beautiful job… Starbucks should have you make these FOR them :)

  21. I LOVE caramel macchiatos!! This recipe is awesome!

  22. Caramel Machiatto is my favorite! These will be a great take to work treat!

  23. I could eat that frosting with a spoon!

  24. Caramel macchiatos were always my favorite starbucks beverage until I realized just how much they made my belly hurt (I’m not lactose intolerant…but there is something about all that cream…). I love the idea of them in cupcake form! And yes buttercream frosting trumps all!

  25. Seriously, if I tell my husband that you’ve come up with cupcakes that taste like his favorite Starbucks drink? He’ll either love me forever or move next door to you :)

  26. i *heart* venti mocha bucks (no whip)…did you ever have a black & white mocha…my local bucks calls it a tuxedo…super yum!
    i too am trying, trying to cut back on the mocha…so instead of all the pumps i have been having half of them…i am going to try a grande, non-fat, sugar free, cinnamon dolce on your say so!
    peabody, you are killing me with the sounds of these fab cuppies…going to try them for dinner company in two weeks… think i will make the cupcakes & freeze them (thinks frezzing ok?) & then defrost & ice them with that fabu sounding pastry cream!! :)

  27. Yummy on my tummy. If desired? Of course I will drizzle more caramel on it!!!
    That last photo is adorable and mouth watering.

  28. at least you don’t specify a temperature. those are the people that drive me insane.

    those cupcakes are beautiful. as I sit here making 50+ cupcakes from a box mix and worry about making my own frosting come out half as pretty as yours! :) I wish I were brave enough to try that kind of frosting. One day when I’m making just for us I’ll try it.

  29. I can’t wait to make these. I never go to Starbucks and then we moved to the north. We have been here for a couple of months and I am hooked on their Cream Brulee Latte. I am SO glad that they don’t have them year round:) I would hate to know what the calories are in those. The only other thing I like from there is the Macchaito and now you tell me they have a lot of calories. I think I will be skipping them in favor of my daily coke:) How is the football pool going?

  30. Looks good! Just curious, though, why the self-rising flour??

  31. Tim- that is just what the recipe used. It just makes it more simple than having to use baking powder and soda.

  32. Funny, I have never met the temperature people….I hope I don’t. ;)

  33. No you can use homemade.

  34. You will have to move quite north of Seattle to be a tester. :) I live in the Seattle *area*

  35. Yum!

  36. Love, love, love that movie! The high maintenance part of that movie has been a long standing joke around my house! I, with food allergies, totally order high maintenance and my husband has always joked with me about it. Now that he has been diagnosed with celiac…he is has joined the rands of the high maintenance food crowd! Great post. Now I have to make these dairy free, soy free and gluten free! High Maintenance style!

  37. Oh my heavenly goodness. Yes, that buttercream frosting would kick the pants off of any whipped topping!

  38. More caramel – I am gonna have to go out at lunchtime and get a Snickers bar or something to satisfy the craving.

  39. I must make these! It looks to die for!

  40. Awesome cupcakes…and the buttercream is Italian,of course! Never apologise for being high maintenance…women who are usually make it worth a guy’s while.:)

  41. We don’t have any S-bucks in the Netherlands -or any other- we just drink our coffee… But girl I do feel adventurous when I can order a double shot tall caramel macchiato! That is.. until I saw yr order hehe.
    So not going to try this, too good!
    or..think I will anyway

  42. Delicious! It’s ok to be snobby when it comes to coffee. I think if you are going to drink it you better love it!

  43. wow. this looks amazing. i love baking and i think i’ll make this for my 16th bday. :) iv been searching for like a lemon cupcake, but these look waay better. i always <3 ur posts, they make me laugh. and i would say i am high maintence, everything has to be clean and in its place :) ..aka ocd (cdo)

  44. Oh, Peabody! I am moving in the Marysville area (or a little further south, have not exactly decided yet.) Close enough???

  45. Thanks, Peabody. I made these cupcakes tonight but with a cream cheese caramel frosting. YUM.

    Thanks, again.

  46. mine didnt turn out as dark as yours, but i added enough vanilla and it was pure from mexico, so idk what went wrong. and it looks like your icing is darker too. mine looks white. did you add a lot of caramel?

  47. but they tasted delish!!! just look different. all my friends loved them and totally wanted the recipe. :)

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