A cupcake and casino weekend

Hey there and happy Saturday to you! How is your weekend?  Between Brandon’s birthday celebrations and preparing for my parents arrival, it has been a busy but fun weekend around here.
Last night, a group of about 16 of us went to Ribs and Rumps (cute name for a barbeque restaurant, I think!) for Brandon’s birthday dinner. It was a great night full of laughs and great food. Check out my meal..I swear it could have fed a family of 3 with just the meat alone!

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I’ve never been the biggest “ribs” fan, but since it was the restaurant specialty, I decided was convinced to try a combination plate of both ribs and chicken. They ended up being delicious, so I’m glad I did, but it was so much food. I am thinking we may take my parents there to try it out while they’re here since my Mom loves barbeque ribs, plus I think she’ll get a kick out of the name and the portion sizes, too.
If you’re reading and you’re from Australia, have you eaten here?

Anyway, most of us went into town after dinner to have drinks, hang-out, and “play the pokies”. This is what they call the slot machines in Australia, which I think is too cute. It sounds much more fun than “playing the slots!” One of my girlfriends won $40, and I was envious! It was a really great celebration for Brandon.
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Surprise birthday dessert
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Big Winner of the night!
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Love these girls, such a fun night!
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With the birthday boy  : – )

Speaking of celebrating for Brandon…we’ve still been celebrating nightly because the Cookies and Cream Cupcakes I made on his birthday seem to be never-ending! I guess that’s the problem with making a batch of 12 cupcakes for two people; we have to eat them all! Not that I mind, these are too good to pass up.  I found this recipe over  a year ago on one of my favorite food blogs, How Sweet It Is,  and I’ve been making them ever since. However, to make these more birthday-ish, I adapted this batch to include a very special Australian ingredient:
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Basically, these are cake-batter tasting Oreos and they are out-of-this-world good! Mark my words, I will be shipping these home to America when we move back…100%, absolutely shipping them back.

Cookies ‘n Cream Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
Cupcakes and frosting adapted from How Sweet It Is
makes 12 cupcakes
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour (I used white flour)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup milk ( I used skim)
12 crushed 100s and 1000s Oreos (Or any type of Oreo-like cookie would work)

Directions
1) First, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (or 176.6 degrees Celsius),and crush your oreo/oreo-like cookies in a Ziploc bag, and set aside. Now line your muffin tins with liners. (This really helps come clean-up time and makes the cupcakes extra festive. I chose blue polka-dotted liners that my friend Sarah sent me. I adore them. Thanks again, Sar!)
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2) Next, cream the butter, sugar, and eggs together in a medium-sized mixing bowl until fluffy, then add the vanilla.
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3) Next, combine the dry ingredients in another  mixing bowl and stir. Then add half of the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing them until combined. Then add the milk.
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4) Now add the remaining dry ingredients and mix until combined.

5) Once mixed, add your crushed Oreos to the batter and stir them in with a large spoon or spatula.
Pour the batter into your tins evenly, and you’re good to go. Just make sure you save yourself a taste, you know, just to make sure it’s as delicious as it looks!
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6) Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until golden on the top. Let them cool, and while they cool, you can make the frosting.
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Vanilla Buttercream Frosting (You’ll likely have extra, this makes a lot of frosting!)
Ingredients:
2 sticks of butter, softened
1 1/2 – 2 lbs powdered sugar (called sugar icing in Australia)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1-2 tablespoons sweetened condensed milk ( I used low-fat)

Directions
Soften the butter and mix the butter and powdered sugar together, just gradually adding the powdered sugar to the mix slowly, a bit at a time. Add the vanilla, and then mix in the condensed milk, adding more if needed to reach the consistency you want. (I ended up using 2 tablespoons).

To frost these, I put the frosting in a Ziploc bag, cut a small corner-edge off, and “piped” the frosting on the cupcakes the best that I could without an official piping bag. They weren’t perfect but I think Brandon loved them and that’s all that matters to me!
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This is how I presented them, which wasn’t exactly how I envisioned it, but these blue “27” candles were the only candles I could find. At least they were blue and not pink, which is what I almost resorted to buying!
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If you try these, I hope you enjoy them!

What’s your favorite  Oreo, and what’s your favorite birthday dessert? Cupcakes? Ice-cream? Cake? Please share!

Me? I’m a Double-Stuf Oreo and an ice-cream cake kind-of-girl : – )

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26 thoughts on “A cupcake and casino weekend

  1. Oreos were my mom’s favorite cookie. She was born the year they were invented! I don’t think she knew that, she just loved them. I think I get my sweet tooth from her! Maybe Sarah and I will try to make these when I am out visiting her.

  2. What a fun weekend! I love your dress and those cupcakes look super good!

    Favourite birthday dessert for me is probably banana cake or carrot cake with cream cheese frosting – and it has to have the frosting because that makes it out of this world good, haha. Once upon a time, I hated frosting (because of awful store bought cakes with icky frosting) and I would only want icecream cakes for my birthday – but my birthday is smack bang in the middle of winter and ice cream just doesn’t work ;P

  3. Your dress is so cute! Brandon’s birthday looks like a great night. Isn’t yours coming up? Birthday weekend, round 2!! Wahoo. I LOVE ice cream cake! That’s my favorite birthday dessert!! Specifically Mint chocolate chip.

  4. I’m not really an oreo girl actually but cookies and cream ice-cream is good! Looks like a super fun weekend. Haha, I never win on the pokies either, I swear I have the worst luck :P

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