Monday, July 9, 2012

Gingerbread Hostess Cupcakes

Do you know what search term brings people to Bake at 350 more than any other? "Hostess Cupcakes" or "Homemade Hostess Cupcakes."

I made them last year for Valentine's Day. They were so good that the 3 people in our family ate all 20 of them. :)

For Christmas, I decided to make Gingerbread Hostess Cupcakes. Made even easier by using a boxed gingerbread mix.

It worked with one minor hiccup...more about that later.

Make gingerbread in muffin cups instead of in a pan. Just shorten the cooking time and let them cool before filling. Fill them and then dip the tops in melted white chocolate. Then, add the decorative icing on top (details & recipe below).

Here's the hiccup...the original recipe calls for ganache for the topping. I thought...easy, I'll just replace the chocolate with white chocolate. No, not that easy. The white chocolate was yellow and translucent! Yikes! Skip this step. :)

For the Filling
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 tablespoons heavy cream
1 cup marshmallow creme

For the filling: Using a mixer, cream the butter until light and fluffy. Beat in 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar. Add the vanilla and 1 tablespoon heavy cream; beat until smooth. Beat in the remaining 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar and 2 tablespoons heavy cream in batches, alternating after each addition. Beat in the marshmallow creme.

Spoon the filling into a pastry bag with a medium tip; I used a star tip. Insert the tip into the center of each cupcake top; fill until the cupcake is heavier (do not overfill).

For the topping
1 box Baker's white chocolate, chopped
1 TBSP Crisco

On medium power, melt the chocolate and Crisco in the microwave, stirring after every 30 seconds until smooth.

Dip the tops of the cupcakes in the chocolate. Place in the refrigerator to set up for a few minutes.

For the Icing

1 stick unsalted butter
2 tablespoons milk
2 cups powdered sugar

1/4 tsp vanilla bean paste
1/4 tsp cinnamon
chocolate brown food coloring

Using a mixer, beat the 1 stick butter, 1/4 teaspoon vanilla, the milk and confectioners’ sugar and cinnamon until smooth, adding more milk if needed. Add food coloring if needed. Spoon into a pastry bag with a #1 tip pipe onto the cupcakes to decorate.

Store in the refrigerator.

The original Homemade Hostess Cupcakes are definitely my favorite, but these are a fun alternative for winter and Christmastime.

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