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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Spooky Cat Cupcakes

I started this week as a leader for the 4-H ambassador program for our county and wanted to bring a special, festive treat for the kids. Because I'm ridiculously (and sometimes crazily) ambitious I decided to make the chocolate cat topped cupcakes from the book "What's New Cupcake?" I used the same method for making the cupcakes as I did for making the red velvet cake from a previous post, but I used a white mix this time. I also made a delicious buttercream found in the same book. It's supposed to look like a black cat standing in front of a full moon. The dark cupcakes are supposed to be a black sky filled with stars. The picture makes the black frosting more purple, but it really is black.

3 sticks of butter
1 16 oz. container of marshmallow fluff
vanilla (I never measure it)
1/2 cup powdered sugar and more if you feel like it.

In my stand mixer I beat the butter until it looked fluffy, then add the fluff and vanilla and mix until fully combined. Make sure to scrape down the bowl once in a while. Finally add the powdered sugar until it's completely combined.

For the chocolate cats, I used dark chocolate melting wafers, melted down in a double boiler pot, and then piped, using a pastry bag and a very narrow end, over a template I found in the book. You could easily choose any image off the internet, print it out, and stick under some parchment paper to make whatever shape you want to top your cupcakes. I then sprinkled the still melted cats with black decorating sugar.

Sounds easy enough, right? This is quite possibly one of the more frustrating things I have attempted. By the end of this venture my whole kitchen was covered in hardened chocolate, sprinkles that leave a lovely dark green smear when they get wet, and cats (real ones) trying to steal my cupcakes.

So, what would I improve on the next go round? I would use a bigger decorating tip then what I started with. It was difficult to quickly fill in my outline and sprinkle the sugar on before it set when it took so long with the small tip. Otherwise, make sure you have plenty of time and space. You'll need it. The cupcakes were a hit though. All the kids thought they were pretty neat. If you're going for the wow factor, this one will get you it!

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