Recipe: Spaghetti cupcakes
Drinking milk with spaghetti and meatballs might get you run out of your favorite Italian joint, but when your guests realize this is a platter of cupcakes with frosting pasta and strawberry sauce, everyone will want some. The chunk of Parmesan cheese in the background is actually white chocolate, and best of all, the meatballs are hazelnut chocolates right out of the bag.
- 10 vanilla cupcakes baked in white paper liners
- 1 can (16 ounces) vanilla frosting
- 1/2 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3 drops yellow food coloring
- 11 hazelnut chocolates (Ferrero Rocher), unwrapped
- 3/4 cup low-sugar strawberry preserves (low-sugar has the best color)
- 2 tablespoons grated white chocolate, plus an additional chunk for garnish
1. Tint the vanilla frosting with the cocoa powder and yellow food coloring and spread a thin layer on top of the cupcakes. Arrange the cupcakes on a serving platter so that they are touching.
2. Spoon the remaining frosting into a ziplock bag. Press out the excess air and seal the bag. Snip a 1/8-inch corner from the bag. Pipe the frosting all over the cupcakes to make the spaghetti, piling it high and allowing some of the spaghetti to hang over the edges.
3. Place the hazelnut chocolates and the strawberry preserves in a medium bowl and toss to coat. Spoon some of the preserves on top of the cupcakes. Place 1 hazelnut chocolate on each cupcake and 1 on the platter. Top the cupcakes with the remaining strawberry preserves. Sprinkle with the grated white chocolate. Place the chunk of white chocolate on a separate plate with a small hand grater and bring to the table with the platter of spaghetti.
Recipe: Westies cupcakes
With mini cupcake heads and marshmallow snouts, these dogs are all bite and no bark. Their shaggy coats are made by snipping an M-shaped corner in the ziplock piping bag. To produce the multicolored terriers, you simply use two or three colors of frosting in one bag. When you start squeezing out the frosting, the colors mix at the tip.
- 6 standard vanilla cupcakes baked in white paper liners
- 6 mini vanilla cupcakes baked in white paper liners
- 1 can (16 ounces) vanilla frosting
- Brown, yellow, and black food coloring (available at baking supply stores or see Sources, page 229)
- 1 cup dark chocolate frosting
- 12 mini marshmallows
- 1 tablespoon pink decorating sugar (available at baking supply stores or see Sources)
- 14 black chocolate-covered sunflower seeds (available at gourmet candy stores or see Sources)
- 4 Cinnamon Red Hots
- 6 strands red licorice laces
1. Spoon 3/4 cup of the vanilla frosting into a ziplock bag, press out the excess air, and seal. Tint 1/4 cup of the vanilla frosting golden brown with the brown and yellow food coloring and spoon it into one side of a ziplock bag. Spoon 1/4 cup of the vanilla frosting into the other side of the bag. Spoon 2 tablespoons of the dark chocolate frosting down the center of the bag. Press out the excess air and seal the bag. Tint the remaining dark chocolate frosting black with the food coloring. Spoon 1/2 cup of the black frosting into a ziplock bag, press out the excess air, and seal. Spoon 6 tablespoons of the black frosting to one side of a ziplock bag and spoon the remaining 1/2 cup vanilla frosting to the other side of the bag. Press out the excess air and seal.
2. Cut 6 of the mini marshmallows in half on the diagonal to make the ears and press the cut sides into the pink sugar to coat. Cut the remaining 6 marshmallows on the diagonal to remove one-third of the marshmallow. The larger piece will be used to make the muzzle.
3. Reinforce a bottom corner of each ziplock bag with 6 overlapping layers of Scotch tape. Pinch the taped corner flat and snip a small M-shape in the corner. First make the head. Working with a different color for each cupcake, pipe a small dot of frosting on the lower half of a mini cupcake, just below the center. Press a large piece of marshmallow, pointed side up, onto the frosting for the muzzle. Pipe two dots of frosting on opposite sides near the top of the cupcake and attach the ears, sugared side up. Pipe several lines of frosting to cover the nonsugared portion of the ears. Then, starting at one ear, pipe 1/2- inch strokes of frosting around the edge of the cupcake, working your way below the muzzle and up to the other ear, always pulling the frosting away from the center. Next, start at the top of the head and pipe long lines, first to the left, then to the right, working your way down to the marshmallow, then covering the sides of the marshmallow. Pipe smaller lines on the front of the marshmallow (leave the marshmallow exposed on the white Westie). Pipe small tufts of hair between the ears. Add 2 of the black sunflower seeds for the eyes and a Red Hot for the nose (use a black sunflower seed for the nose of the white Westie).
4. Now make the body, using one of the standard cupcakes and the frosting that matches the head. Start piping about 1/2 inch in from the edge and work your way around the cupcake. Continue piping rows in concentric circles until the cupcake is covered. Turn the decorated head on its side and place on the body. Add a licorice lace for the leash.
5. Continue with the remaining cupcakes, making 2 white Westies, 2 salt-and pepper terriers, 1 black terrier, and 1 brown mix.
To make the pink tongues, use a pink fruit chew and follow Step 2 for the schnauzer on page 71.