Word Up…

It’s Valentine’s Day. Joy.
It’s not quite as fun as back in the days of Elementary school where you built a little Valentine box and you passed out Valentines to everyone in the class, even the kid no one liked (because your mom made you). If you were lucky it came with a sucker and sometimes Conversation Hearts. Now, I ‘m not big on Conversation Hearts, but when you are 10, sugar is sugar. And you don’t turn down free candy…unless it’s black licorice. Which isn’t candy…it’s just evil.

I tried and tried to do something with Conversation Hearts for this blog. I made ice cream….the color was well…interesting. I think that bag had too many blue and green hearts or something. Then I tried to make Whipped Cream Frosting using cream infused with the hearts. Umm, fail. So all you get are Creamsicle Cupcakes topped with a Conversation Heart, to start a conversation.

I’m not sure who comes up with some of these but let’s review some from my bag.

Sweet Pea: Aw, isn’t that nice. I am so special; they have me on a candy. :P

Reach 4 it: Hmmm, this could really go a lot of ways. But really I just see some teenager in a movie theater trying to do the reach around for the boob.

Text Me: Clearly a sign of the times. And yes, I must admit that I do most of my communication this way.

Friend Me: Another sign of the times. Almost everyone has a Facebook page…including this blog.

Crazy 4U: That’s for all you stalkers out there. Remember to keep your 500ft distance this holiday.

U Move Me: Again, you could go a lot of places with this. What exact part of you is being moved?

Soul Mate: Awww

Marry Me: Which if you are going  to ask…this is not the way to do it.

Boogie: What does snot have to do with Valentine’s Day?

My Team: Which is either some sort of stance on which team you bat for ( ;) ) or in my case, love for my hockey team. The team is my Valentine’s this year.

And last but not least, pictured below….Let’s Ride: I’m just going to leave that one up to your imagination. :P

These here cupcakes are in honor of the first man to ever give me flowers for Valentine’s Day….my dad. :) Whenever my mom got flowers, my dad would send me pink carnations with a little bee (not live, because that’s just messed up if it were) inside. My dad loves creamsicles and so I thought these would be fitting for him. Perhaps if I sent him some he would go back to sending me flowers.

On a side note, a kind reminder to the men out there: girls like Valentine’s Day. Even if all you do is write something about her that you like on a sticky  note (at least cut it in the shape of a heart) it is a least something. A  little something can often get you a little something. ;)

Creamsicle Conversation Heart Cupcakes

Orange Cupcakes
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
2 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ tsp. baking powder
1/8 tsp. salt
¾ cup whole milk
¼ cup orange juice
1 tsp. orange extract
1 vanilla bean, seed scraped, pod discarded

Preheat oven to 375F
Line three mini muffin pans, mine hold 24 each. You will get about 58 of these.
Beat butter on high until soft, about 30 seconds.
Add sugar. Beat on medium-high until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Add eggs one at a time; beat for 30 seconds between each.
Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl.
Add about a third of the dry ingredients to the mixing bowl and beat to combine. Add about a half of the milk and beat to combine. Continue adding, alternating between dry and wet and finishing with the dry.
Add the orange juice, orange extract, and vanilla bean, beat to combine.
Scoop into cupcake papers about half full.
Place cupcakes in the oven and turn the oven down to 350 degrees. Bake for 13-15 minutes until a cake tester comes out clean.

Creamsicle Cream Cheese Frosting
2 sticks (1 cup) butter, at room temperature
12 ounces cream cheese
3-4 cups sifted powdered sugar
1 ½ tsp. orange extract
2 vanilla bean, seed scraped, pod discarded
Beat butter at medium speed until creamy.
Add cream cheese and beat until combined.
Sift 3 cups of the powdered sugar into the butter and cream cheese. Add the vanilla beans and orange extract. Beat until combined.
Add more sugar until you get to the consistency and sweetness you like.

Comments

  1. Those are cute cupcakes!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  2. Haha, I didn’t know that the conversation hearts were updated to contain “text me.” Love it :D

    Creamsicle flavor!! My favorite childhood treat.

  3. lol – awesome! Love the talking hearts analysis there! Thanks! :)

  4. Very cute! My dad has also historically been my best Valentine. Way back when I broke up with my highschool boyfriend around Valentine’s day, my Dad bought my the BIGGEST box of chocolates I have ever seen. He worked for a food company, so he had access to some really amazing foods — but I’ll never forget how sweet that was!

  5. Creamsicle cupcakes?! Gah yay! YAY! These sound just divine..!

  6. I never loved conversation hearts, but you’re right, sugar is sugar. I remember when they were just “Be Mine,” “I’m Yours,” etc. Crazy how even candy proves that times have changed!

    My dad loves anything creamsicle, so I’m sure he’d love these!

  7. (at least cut it in the shape of a heart) LOVE THAT! ;)

  8. These look so delicious – I love creamsicles! But holy cow…3 vanilla beans? That’s one expensive recipe – vanilla beans are about $12 for 2 at my grocery store!

    Happy Valentine’s Day!

  9. Wonderful post – fabulous photography! (My weenie dog’s name is Sweet Pea) Just thought you’d like to know.

  10. Nothing wrong with these cupcakes at all. They have vanilla beans in the frosting, so it’s a definite win. And with conversation hearts, it’s a party!

  11. A little something can often get you a little something. Truer words were never spoken.

    Super sweet post. My dad is definitely the only guy I will ever be able to unremittingly rely on to get me flowers. And I’m okay with that.

    Love these cupcakes! I personally think they’re better because they’re not conversation heart-infused.

  12. Hahaha, your heart analysis made me LOL. Isn’t that on the hearts these days, btw? Valentines as a kid is awesome, then it gets all complicated and annoying. But the cuteness of it never fades. Love your heart cupcakes, adorable!

  13. @Maggie- you can sub for vanilla extract. My Costco at Christmas time sells them in bulk and I buy them up. Also the internet sells vanilla beans in bulk cheaper.

  14. Those vanilla bean flecks in the frosting is really what does it for me! Yummy Peabody!

  15. Creamsicle Cupcakes sound ridiculously good. I know a few people that would go crazy for them.
    I can’t say I ever really liked candy hearts, and I never really ate them, I was picky apparently :) . Granted they weren’t very prevelant either. When I was growing up, more often than not you received the flame inducing cinnamon hearts, which I didn’t really like either :) .
    And you’re so right about black licorice it is the work of pure evil, as well as its equally malevolent cousin the Black Jelly Bean.
    (Oh and don’t toss the vanilla bean pod, use it to make vanilla sugar :) — always good to have on hand)

  16. My daughter just recently requested an orange flavored cake. This is perfect! Thank you much!

  17. Love how packed full of vanilla bean specs that frosting is- I could eat that just on a spoon quite happily!

    Happy V-Day, Peabody. :)

  18. Ah yes – so a sign of the times. These cupcakes look awesome.

  19. Mmm creamcicle cupscakes sound do delicious! I know I love the popcicle version, so why shouldnt it work in cupcake form ;)

    Happy valentine’s Day Peabody

  20. Sadly the elementry schools in my area don’t allow the kids to give out candy anymore,all the party food has to be healthy, and they have to make the valentines instead of buying them,no fun at all. and your dad sounds like mine he does the same thing. These look really yummy and I didn’t realize those hearts said such strange things. Happy Valentines day.

  21. i liked the bigger conversation hearts with the fancy edge better than the smaller ones. don’t know why, i’m just weird. i spent yesterday and today directing last minute shoppers to the boxed valentines for little johnny’s class and the boxed chocolates. Dudes, ya really need to shop sooner than Valentines Day at 6pm.
    I got Valentines Day lunch at Hooters :)

  22. Totally brilliant post! I’ve seen even odder messages on some boxes in my area, with the chocolate and other flavor versions of the hearts.

    I’ve seen online tutorials in making conversation hearts, but all of them use gelatin. I know this isn’t a vegetarian blog, but do you know of any vegetarian versions to make them homemade? I’m not a big fan of the taste, but it would be cool to be able to make up your own slogans…

    http://candy.about.com/od/valentinesdaycandy/ss/convoheart_sbs.htm

  23. These are so cute! The frosting sounds delicious with the vanilla bean in it!!

  24. I filled about 50 coffee mugs with Valentine Day candy for clients and did notice the “reach for it” heart. Thought it was odd.

  25. Gorgeous! I never like the little hearts since they taste like starch but I did like the messages. haha

    I’d much rather have one of your cupcakes!

  26. @heartofglass- sorry I don’t know any vegetarian options, until recently I didn’t know people in general were making those.

  27. Great find Jill!

  28. @Jill & Peabody–thanks so much–the vegan version seems a bit improvisational, but it would be fun to ‘give it a go’ with the agar.

    I know the hearts don’t taste great (the orange cupcakes look more tempting) but I’d love to try to do personalized messages….

  29. Did you hear about the conversation heart that got put in the wrong box? It was a dirty one with the word “tatas” on it and it got mixed up in the regular ones…and apparently the mother of the kid that found it is suing!
    Wish you would have found it for your cupcakes instead! ;-) Lol!

  30. Love these adorable little cakes. I got a few old school hearts “email me” and the like. Haven’t seen a “text me” yet, but my eyes will be peeled next year!

    Wonder if there will be a “tweet me” anytime soon?

  31. I’m glad I thought to click through – there was no warning that it was only a partial feed and I thought it was weird that you’d been posting short paragraph posts with no recipes lately. So now I’m caught up and ready to make cupcakes.

  32. Actually Jill, we have been warning people for a couple weeks. It caused quite the controversy actually that stirred sevearl posts about.

  33. Pea-
    Thanks so much for this recipe! I made these last night, and I will tell you that I am no fan of creamsicles (oranges yes, orange flavoring…gross) BUT I love these! They are not too much orange flavor, enough to get it and they have great texture! They were easy and came out great! Thanks again! (PS. Plus…this made A LOT! 2 dz cupcakes-full size-and 24 minis)

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