Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Dinner with Friends: Shirley Temple Cupcakes

This is from Easter.  And yet I'm posting now.  Sigh.
Work is taking over my life, and while I'm taking pictures of what I make, I don't get the blogging done.  It's very sad.  My mother and I were assigned dessert as our part of Easter dinner with friends.  Mom made a chocolate turtle cake, and I made 2 kinds of cupcakes so there would be enough for an army.  The one type was golden.  I don't usually make cupcakes any way except from a mix.  I replace the water in the recipe on the box with milk, and make as is.
The second flavour was the recipe I'm posting here:  Shirley Temple; my favourite restaurant drink when I was 6.  I loved the colour, the taste, and the little sword I could take home with me.  What interested me about this recipe was that it came from a mix, but had really only one ingredient.  Would this even work?
I present to you now Shirley Temple Cupcakes:

1 box vanilla cake mix
1 can 7-up or Sprite
2 Tbsp maraschino cherry juice
1-2 drops of red food coloring
24 maraschino cherries, for garnish
1.  Preheat oven to 350 F. Line cupcake tins with papers. Combine cake mix, pop, and beat with an electric mixer for 2 minutes.

2.  Separate the batter in half and add 2 tbsp of cherry juice and drop of red food coloring to half of the cake mix.

3.  Fill the cupcake liners with half of pink mixture and half of the vanilla cake mix and then bake according to package directions.  Let cool completely before icing.
I know what you're thinking...because I thought it too, "A can of 7-Up??  Really?"  But it works.  Really.
Here is the violently pink batter for the cupcakes.  It wasn't even much thicker than usual.  You'd think that there's more liquid in the recipe on the package, but apparently not.  There is one difference in how they look when baked.
They're very flat, and full of holes.  At least, mine were.  I also found they were extremely delicate.  The wrappers started coming off as I took them out of the pan, and these were just Wilton pink polka dot wrappers.  I got 20 cupcakes out of the mix.  I got 20 out of the golden mix too.  Perhaps I made the cupcakes a little big.

But the icing...oh, the icing.  So good.

White Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

1-1/2 c butter, softened
6 Tbsp milk
9 oz white chocolate, melted and cooled to lukewarm
1 tsp vanilla
3 c sifted powdered sugar

1.  In a large bowl, on medium speed of an electric mixer, beat the butter until creamy, about 3 minutes. 2.  Add the milk carefully and beat until smooth. Add the melted chocolate and beat well, about 2 minutes. Add the vanilla and beat for 3 more minutes.
3.  Gradually add the powdered sugar and beat on low speed until creamy and desired consistency.

Once cupcakes are frosted top with a stem cherry.
From Mom's Crazy Cooking

When I read the recipe, I thought that the full recipe was going to make waaaaaaay more icing than I would need for 40 cupcakes.  So, I decided to start with a half recipe.  Just as well I did when this is what I did in my mom's new microwave:
Yeah..  That's BURNT  white chocolate.  Burnt in under 2 minutes.  Burnt to unuseable.  Just as well I'd brought everything for a full recipe.  I could start again.
I don't use a piping bag, I frosted with a table knife.  This was a beautiful icing to work with, and had a great flavour.  I'd make it again in a heartbeat.
Just so you can see, here's the other cupcake decorated with the same icing (40 cupcakes with a half batch), but slightly different:  I toasted coconut, placed 3 Cadbury mini eggs in the middle and surrounded with a nest of coconut.  They were yummy too.

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