I had the distinct benefit of visiting a bakery in New York City called sugar Sweet sunshine on Rivington St. yesterday. We will be posting a video of them soon, but I just couldn’t resist telling you about this joint. The founders and operators (pictured below) are Peggy and Deb, two old friends who met while doing a show in Brooklyn Heights and then went on to work together at the now infamous Magnolia Bakery. After leaving Magnolia and holding a series of jobs doing this and that, they concocted this dream of their own to open a bakery and spent the next 2 years inventing recipes and perfecting the art of cupcake making.
Peggy (left) and Deb(right) own and operate sugar Sweet sunshine
They’re really skinny but muscular, which you might be able to see from the photo. Do they eat the cupcakes? Yes, they eat them, but they are hugely active people. When not running the bakery, which is hard physical work (they have some help but they are the master frosters), they are literally running! Deb did an triathlon last year
I looked around the place and was immediately fascinating by the vats of powdered sugar, unsweetened chocolate chunks, flour, chocolate chips (below) and basic ingredients that they use throughout the day. This bakery is the real deal-no fake anything and nothing too fancy. Basic cupcakes, like you dream about!
Chips and unsweetened chocolate chunks each sit in their own, large vats that I wouldn’t mind hiding in for a while!
I asked them to show me how to make a Basic Chocolate Buttercream Frosting, which I thought everyone should know how to make (including me). You can use it on cakes, cupcakes or even brownies. The gals told me that some people come in and ask for a cup of just frosting. And a spoon. Yes, they ask for the cup, so they could eat it like you would eat a yogurt. I know, it’s sort of half gross and half understandable.
Here’s how they made the frosting:
Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
- 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate
- 1/2 pound unsalted butter
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 4 tablespoons milk
- 3 teaspoons vanilla
Melt chocolate in microwave, but don’t let it burn. Keep an eye on this or you could ruin it. You might want to test it by starting with 30 seconds, checking it, and putting it back in 30 second intervals if needed.
Melted chocolate should look like this
Once your chocolate is melted and cools a bit so you don’t cook your butter, add it and the butter, which should be softened but not melted, to a bowl. Use either the paddle attachment of a Mixmaster or use a hand beater to start mixing these together until they are smooth and blended.
Turn your beater off so you don’t spray yourself and add 2 cups of the sugar and 2 tablespoons milk and starting beating again at low speed, gradually increasing until all incorporated. Shut off beater and add the rest of the sugar and milk, beat together and add the vanilla.
Your frosting should be smooth and spreadable. If you need it to be a little looser, add a little more milk. If you added too much milk, add a little more sugar.
frosting should look like this when ready
Now, they wouldn’t give me the recipe for their cupcakes:
but I got to help frost them! Stay tuned for the video to see how I did!
And here’s the video:
In case you are on the fence about having a cupcake or not, here they provided me with good reasons:
Frosted cupcakes awaiting some lucky person’s shopping bag.