Winter Blogfest: Helen C. Johannes

This post is part of Long and Short Reviews’ Winter Blogfest. Leave a comment for a chance to win a Kindle copy of FREDERICK FLY-CATCHER, US only.

Chip Cupcakes

Looking for something yummy and easy to make ahead for your holiday brunch? Something kid-sized as well as grab-and-go? My family calls these Chip Cupcakes, but they’re really a cross between a muffin and an unfrosted cupcake. All the tasty goodness of a cupcake without the frosting mess, plus nuts and chocolate chips. Bonus: The ingredients are those you most likely already have on hand—no seasonal specialty items. Extra bonus: If these prove to be a hit with your family, you can make them any time of the year!

Chip Cupcakes

You’ll need two mixing bowls, one medium and one large, plus muffin/cupcake tins. I use paper liners for easy removal and less mess. This makes 18-20 cupcakes.

Prepare the following ingredients:

2/3 cup butter, softened

1 cup sugar

2 eggs, unbeaten

2 cups sifted flour

2 ½ tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. salt

2/3 cup milk

½ tsp. vanilla extract

1 tsp. almond extract

1 cup chocolate chips

½ cup walnuts or pecans, chopped (I like smaller bits, so I put the nuts in a plastic bag and smash them with a rolling pin. A can or jar works just as well.)

In medium bowl, sift flour, salt, and baking powder together, adding the chips lightly to the mixture. In larger bowl, cream the butter and sugar well. Add eggs one at a time, beating until fluffy. Add vanilla and almond extracts. Mix in flour alternately with the milk. Fold in nuts.

Fill greased muffin tins or paper liners 2/3 full.

Bake at 400° F for 20 min. Makes 18-20 cupcakes. Tip out onto rack and let cool. Store in tightly covered container, and you’ll have kid-friendly treats ready for that otherwise busy holiday brunch the next morning.

“A fun adventure that was a hit with my nine-year-old!”

What happens when Frederick, a champion fly-catcher, is confronted with a human? After all, humans are dangerous! And worse, this human is carrying a thing of troublesome, powerful magic. What if Frederick can’t get it to stop?

This fast-paced chapter book will entice young readers to keep turning pages to find out what happens next. Connecting with Frederick’s frog’s-eye-view reminds children to treat all creatures with respect and to be open to friendships with new or different people. Parents can use the story events as jumping-off points to talk with children about problem-solving and teamwork strategies as well as simply being kind.

“The best thing I could do was to relax and enjoy the ride, so that’s exactly what I did.”

Helen C. Johannes writes award-winning fantasy inspired by the fairy tales she grew up reading and the amazing historical places she’s visited in England, Ireland, Scotland and Germany. Multi-published, she writes tales of adventure and romance in fully realized worlds sprung from pure imagination and a lifelong interest in history, culture, and literature. Warriors on horseback, women who refuse to sit idly at home, and passion that cannot be denied or outrun—that’s what readers will find in her adult books: Brave men, bold women—hearts in search of home. Fast-paced, fanciful, family-friendly fun inspired by her own children is the hallmark of Frederick Fly-Catcher.


Buy the book at Amazon.


  1. Debra Guyette says

    Thanks for the recipe. It looks delicious.

  2. Book sounds delightful and I would love to win a copy in your kindle contest. I have an equally tasty recipe for children to enjoy that I call Blueberry Oatmeal Bars. Would be happy to share it anytime.

  3. sounds tasty

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