Cashew & Blueberry Frosted Cupcakes with Chocolate Ganache

Thursday, September 6, 2012


Seven years ago was a very pivotal and difficult time in my life.  Does anyone look back on specific time period and it's just darkness with an overwhelming feeling of depressing?  Those are my memories from seven years ago.  But, there was one shining light during that time.  It was my friend, Lora.

Lora and I met at the beginning of that year when she started working with me at a local frame shop.  Immediately, we realized how much we had in common and instantly became friends.  She was an artist who had just finished college with a degree in art, and was taking a year(or two) off to work on her portfolio before going to an exclusive art school in the city.  Her family also ate a very plant-based diet, with her brother being a vegan.  Essentially, it was love at first site.

Lora accompanied me on many trips to the Met with my various classes for school.  During her art school education, I would go to whatever event she had.  She is the most talented person I know and you can view her artwork on her blog The Artwork of Lora Banks.

We are constantly looking for fun things to do together, usually with the overarching theme of art, the outdoors, and vegan food.  I could literally ask Lora to do anything with me and she would enthusiastically say, "Yes!!"


Lora has also been the friend that I confide in during my most difficult times.  She has so much love and wisdom, is never judgmental, and always has something insightful and heartwarming to say.  She is truly an angel on earth. 

At the end of July, Lora traveled down to South Carolina to take care of her newborn nephew for a year.  Being the selfless individual she is, she was able to take a break from her studies and relocate to help out her sister and brother-in-law.  I made Lora and her vegan brother these cupcakes for their car trip down south and gave them to her on the night we tearfully said goodbye for a year.  It has all the best things- chocolate, ganache, cashew cream, and blueberries.  Only the best for Lora. 

Lora and I always say, "I'll see you next week!" when talking on the phone or in emails.  It makes me feel better. 

I love you, Lora.  See you next week <3


Cashew & Blueberry Frosted Cupcakes with Chocolate Ganache
makes twelve
12 chocolate cupcakes
1 batch of chocolate ganache

1 cup cashews, soaked overnight
1 tbsp agave
1/2 tsp vanilla

blueberries

Make cupcakes.  Allow to cool.  Once cupcakes have cooled, dip the tops in the prepared ganache.  Allow the ganache to dry.

Combine cashews, agave, and vanilla in a food processor.  Process until smooth.  Transfer to piping bag.  Pipe onto ganache topped cupcakes.  Top with blueberries.  Give to a very special person in your life.  Enjoy!

40 comments:

  1. You are lucky to have a friend like Lora. She sounds like someone very special!

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  2. Friends are really savers sometimes. Lora looks like a wonderful person. Beautiful story and amazing cupcakes too!

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  3. These are so beautiful, I love the colours and the flavours!

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  4. That's a lovely story about your friend! And these cupcakes sound delicious and look gorgeous. : )

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  5. Friends like Lora are the pillars of life--so good that someone so wonderful could be in your life during a horrible season.

    As for the cupcakes, yup, I'd like one right now, thanks! Seriously good looking!

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    1. thanks, jes. she is truly a pillar in my life ;)

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  6. you guys are so lucky to have found each other. These cupcakes are the sweetest send off. the delicious cream and the pretty berries:) Hope you 2 get together soon!

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    1. i hope so, too! i think next week ;)

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  7. I love that you say "see you next week"! My best friends are scattered all over the country, so I may just have to adopt that phrase too. :)
    These cupcakes are beautiful!!

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    1. you should! it kind of tricks the brain. kind of ;)

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  8. Caitlin, I love you so much!!!! I started tearing up when I read this post. Has it only been seven years, I feel like I have known you all my life. You are by far the best friend I ever had and mean the world to me!
    Those cupcakes you made were delicious, moist, and absolutely perfect! It was the best treat to pick up my spirits for a long car ride away from home.

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    1. i love you!!! no, i think it's actually a lifetime. three year old me and you running through fields of wildflowers <3 right?

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  9. Such a lovely post! It's so touching to read about how much you two cherish each other's friendship. These cupcakes also look absolutely delicious! I will definitely give them a try soon.

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  10. Very sweet. It sounds like both you and Lora are very lucky to have each other. Gorgeous cuppers to give to her!

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  11. These cupcakes really do have all the best things! Who wouldn't be delighted to have these as a going away gift?

    It is such a gift when you find a friend that you truly connect with. I love how close you and Lora are- you two are very lucky to have each other. :-)

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    1. all the best things ;) i feel very lucky indeed.

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  12. I think these are one of the most lovely cupcakes I've ever seen Caitlin. It looks like the icing on top is hugging the blueberries in the middle!

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    1. aww erin- thank you! coming from a person who makes such gorgeous food, that is quite the compliment! and, also, i was going for the hugging effect ;)

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  13. You are so lucky to have such an amazing friend!

    And she is so lucky to have a friend that makes her the most awesome cupckaes I have ever seen - really, really? I don't think these or you could be even sweeter than you already are!

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    1. you give me too much credit, heather. but thank you <3

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  14. Oh my, these are stunning! I've never baked with cashews but everyone in my family loves them, so why not give it a try? Beautiful recipe and story.
    -Dana

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    1. thank you! cashews make a delicious cream to top cupcakes ;)

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  15. Such a beautiful story Caitlin. Nothing in the world beats the kindness of a good friend.

    The cupcakes look absolutely divine! They would indeed make the perfect gift.

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  16. Awe, what a beautiful post about such a dear friend :) You are such a sweet heart. xo I had a tear in my eye after reading your lovely post.

    I have a feeling you mean the world to your friend Lora too.

    Gorgeous looking cupcakes! I love how you decorated them! And the flavours are perfect!!!!!

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    1. thank you, courtney <3 you're such a sweet heart, too.

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  17. These sound heavenly! The combination of blueberry and chocolate ganache would be amazing, and I love the addition of the cashew cream! So beautiful too :)!

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  18. Wow, those look good! I have tweeted and pinned your entry to our Gluten Free Fridays board on Pinterest! :) Thanks for linking up at our Gluten Free Fridays recipe party! See you next Friday! Cindy from vegetarianmamma.com

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  19. What a wonderful yummy looking recipe. Will be making this.

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