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Archive for December, 2009|Monthly archive page

Sugar Rush Flavors: Smoreshmallow

In Sugar Rush Flavors on December 7, 2009 at 2:40 pm

SMORESHMALLOW: Two layers of graham goodness hide an ooey-gooey marshmallow creme filling, topped with freshly made chocolate ganache, a toasted marshmallow and a perfect piece of Hershey’s milk chocolate. Sugar Rush Smoreshmallow is a delightful treat that is surprisingly not too sweet. P75 each. To order, e-mail sugarrushlab@gmail.com.

There is an abundance of s’mores cupcakes in the world and sadly, a lot of them are bad.

A lot of them are just chocolate cakes with marshmallow frosting. I’ve never tried one that tasted like real s’mores. I should know – I make mean s’mores. Where is the flavor of graham crackers? Where is the melted chocolate? Where is ooey gooey marshmallow?

And so when we locked ourselves in the lab for an intense cupcake creating session, I had an important goal – to create a cupcake that tasted like real s’mores.

Jill and Giff had other goals. They were both excited at the concept of roasting marshmallows because they both wanted to hog the brand new kitchen torch.

So yeah, we have different priorities but the important thing is we get things done.

Here is our Smoreshmallow Cupcake:

Here is the mini version which is adorable but which we probably wouldn’t make again for a very long time:

Jolo was at our lab that night – he was our official taste tester. But we knew he couldn’t try the s’mores cupcakes without trying real s’mores first.

We whipped up a couple of real s’mores and Jolo loved them so much he kept asking for more. He ate around four of them and I was worried he wouldn’t have space for the s’mores cupcake.

I was wrong.

He started eating the cupcake and making strange sounds. After swallowing, he finally gave us his verdict.

He loved the real s’mores but he loved our cupcakes even more.

His reaction was way better than expected.

We quizzed him. What about the texture? The ganache? The marshmallow creme?

He loved every single thing about the cupcake.

We let out whoops of joy and high-fived one another.

We were all sugared out that night and had to wait until the next day to try our newest cupcake.

Smoreshmallow is the most expensive of our cupcakes for many reasons – it needs a lot of ingredients (and we only use the best ones), it requires a lot of work, it takes a lot of time to make.

But one bite is enough to tell us that this cupcake is worth it – mess, dirty dishes, burnt fingers and all.

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Sugar Rush Flavors: White Ninja

In Sugar Rush Flavors on December 7, 2009 at 2:06 pm

WHITE NINJA: Don’t be fooled, this vanilla cupcake is no weakling. Its rich buttercream frosting will make you want to spill all your secrets. Grab it fast, these White Ninjas never stay around too long. P50 each. To order, e-mail sugarrushlab@gmail.com.

The secret to getting us to create a cupcake flavor is to just ask.

“Do you do vanilla cupcakes too?” Tammy SMSd us.

“Yes!” was our quick reply and we proceeded to the lab to create the perfect vanilla cupcake.

My biggest fear now is someone would ask, “Do guys have eggplant cupcakes?” or “Can you make tomato frosting?” and we still wouldn’t say no.

Yes yes we’re crazy cupcake scientists.

Anyway, back to vanilla.

It was a Saturday night and we were in a playful mood, which is probably why Jill and Giff spent a lot of time trying to turn the vanilla cupcakes into sheep cupcakes.

It was hilarious – especially because one of Giff’s cupcakes looked like George Washington.

It took an entire night – and the realization that no one knew how to draw a sheep’s face on the cupcakes – for them to give up and go back to creating what has become our White Ninja.

You shouldn’t feel bad for the abandoned sheep though – they disappeared just as fast as the White Ninja, gobbled up by cupcake monsters constantly hanging around our lab.

Sugar Rush Flavors: Coffee Toffee and Coffee Coffee

In Sugar Rush Flavors on December 7, 2009 at 1:35 pm

COFFEE TOFFEE: Can’t decide between coffee and chocolate? Who says you have to? Enjoy a rich chocolate cake topped with a yummy coffee buttercream frosting and sprinkled with toffee crunch. P55 each.

COFFEE COFFEE: Forget the trip to your favorite coffee shop – this cupcake can give you the caffeine fix you need. A strong coffee base topped with a delicious coffee buttercream frosting and dusted with just the right amount of cinnamon – this cupcake will leave you wanting more. Don’t say we didn’t warn you. P55 each.

To order, e-mail sugarrushlab@gmail.com.

There’s a different story behind the creation of each Sugar Rush cupcake flavor. Some were born out of panic (see Red Velvet Dream), others just pure fun (see Dark Ninja).

With Coffee Toffee, it started with the sprinkles.

We spotted a tub of toffee crunch sprinkles during one of our many Sugar Rush shopping trips and immediately snatched it up. In the kitchen, we realized that not only did it smell good, it tasted great too. We decided we needed to create the perfect cupcake flavor to match it.

It wasn’t hard. We used our rich chocolate cake as a base and whipped up a strong coffee buttercream frosting giving the cupcake a deadly double dose of chocolate and coffee goodness.

It received a big thumbs up during taste tests. But we weren’t done with coffee yet.

During our next lab session, we decided to make a double coffee cupcake for people who really love their caffeine fix. We created a ┬ástrong coffee cake as base, topped it with our yummy This isn’t a caffeine fix – this is a caffeine kick.

We knew it was good because Giff, who was refusing to eat anything that night because of a toothache, attacked the poor cupcake like he was Jaws and it was a swimmer’s leg.

Coffee Coffee made Giff forget his tooth was aching. That’s how you know you just made a good cupcake.

Sugar Spotting: Red Velvet Dream at Suite

In Sugar Spotting on December 7, 2009 at 12:59 pm

Check out Sugar Rush’s Red Velvet Dream at the launch of Suite Dessert Bar (formerly Embassy Cuisine).

While the place still serves your old savory favorites from Cuisine, Chef Fernando Aracama has prepared a delicious menu of sweet treats to tickle your palate (I love his walnut pie). Chef Ferns is the guy who invented Uva’s chocnut ice cream (which is still available at Trilogy and Canteen in Makati). And being one of those people who used to go to Uva just for a bowl of Chef Ferns’ chocnut ice cream, it was such an honor for our Red Velvet Dream to share the buffet table with his creations.

We got such a kick out of these photos.

Even the ones where you can only see the cupcakes in the corner of the picture, like this:

And this:

Chef Ferns said they brought out the rest of the cupcakes and used them to toast to the launch of Suite.

Congratulations, Tim, Chef Ferns, Erik and Jon! Thanks for letting Sugar Rush be a part of this special night.

Sugar Rush Flavors: Red Velvet Dream

In Sugar Rush Flavors on December 7, 2009 at 12:28 pm

RED VELVET DREAM: A party in a cup. Rich red velvet cake topped with special pink cream cheese frosting and red sugar sparkle. P65 each. To order, e-mail sugarrushlab@gmail.com

When Tim told me that he was ordering a hundred cupcakes for the relaunch of Embassy Cuisine as Suite, I swear I thought he meant chocolate.

And when I SMSd him to ask if the event had a color scheme or if there was any special flavor they wanted, I swear I still thought he’d say chocolate.

But Tim asked me to talk to Kim and imagine my panic when Kim said, “Can you do red velvet cupcakes with pink frosting?”

“Sure,” I said, chewing on my thumb, forgetting that I had stopped the nasty habit of biting my nails years ago.

Then I called Jill and Giff and started hyperventilating.

But your Sugar Rush cupcake scientists never say  no to a challenge. We pulled all-nighters experimenting, doing taste tests, trying to create the perfect red velvet cupcake topped with the perfect cream cheese frosting. And when we found our secret formula, we used it over and over to create a hundred beautiful red velvet babies for Suite.

The cupcake got its name from our friend Le who was inspired to post the words “Red Velvet Dreams” as her Facebook status after eating one of our cupcakes.

Red Velvet Dream continues to be one of our best-sellers today.

We’ve discussed the possibility of changing the frosting from pink to white but the truth is, I like that it’s pink.

And I would like to keep it pink so it will always remind me of that moment of panic when I heard the words “pink frosting” leave Kim’s mouth and the moment of triumph when Jill finally mixed the perfect batch of pale pink frosting, turning what could have been a nightmare into a Red Velvet Dream.

Sugar Rush Flavors: Dark Ninja

In Sugar Rush Flavors on December 7, 2009 at 9:59 am

DARK NINJA: It’s dark, it’s strong and it disappears really fast. This rich chocolate cupcake topped with chocolate buttercream frosting and sprinkles is a real killer. P50 each. To order, e-mail sugarrushlab@gmail.com

Everything started with the Dark Ninja.

Although back then, we just called them chocolate cupcakes.

After weeks of making scary cupcake mutations with the oven toaster and turbo broiler, we finally figured out how to turn on the new oven and make perfect chocolate cupcakes.

One Saturday, I woke up extremely late and hungover, completely forgetting that I had promised to bring dessert to my college reunion.

I trashed my plans of bringing perfect little heart-shaped cheesecakes. I just didn’t have the time.

Jill and I supermarket-hopped and spent hours baking what would become Sugar Rush’s Dark Ninja.

We must have enjoyed ourselves too much – although we needed to make just around fifty of those babies, we ended up with close to eighty of them.

They disappeared really quickly though – ninja-quick.

The following week, we had a sleepover with Giff and other friends who all wanted to learn how to make cupcakes.

Giff was the most enthusiastic of the lot, loving every moment of creating cupcakes – from mixing the batter and taking pans out of the oven to adding sprinkles and tying lovely ribbons around the cupcake boxes.

That is how we formed our trio of cupcake craziness.

We may have created other flavors since the Dark Ninja but our evil chocolate babies will always be special to us.

The Dark Ninja will always be our first – the mighty cupcake that kicked us in the nuts and said, “Hey freaks! What are you wasting your time on? Start making more of me!”