We are so beyond thrilled and super-excited to welcome our favorite baker around, Sandy of Firefly Confections as our newest contributor to cupcakeMAG. Sandy will be bringing you lots of sweet recipes and everything a oh-so-sweet foodie loves! Of course — she had to start with cupcakes! Promise, you will love the latest cupcakes Sandy whipped up.
// Ho Ho Hostess Cupcakes //
This holiday season, dress up your dessert table with a new twist on an old favorite. The Ho Ho Hostess Cupcake may look like the original, but inside it’s filled with a sweet peppermint butter cream. You can top it off with the classic loop in white, or make it more festive by writing Fa la la & Ho Ho Ho. Crushed candycanes would also be a sweet touch!
Start by making your favorite Chocolate Cupcake, in paper liners. You can make them from scratch or save yourself some time and use a box mix (which is what I did). A typical recipe or box mix makes 18-24 cupcakes and that’s perfect.
Prepare your Butter Cream filling. You will need:
- 1 Cup of unsalted butter at room temperature
- 8 cups of confectioners’ sugar
- ½ cup of heavy cream (or whole milk)
- 1-2 teaspoons of peppermint extract (if you’re not a fan of peppermint you can change it to vanilla extract)
In a large bowl, beat the butter on medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Slowly add 1 cup of the confectioners’ sugar and mix until it is fully incorporated. Add the cream and extract and beat until light and fluffy. Add the remaining sugar, 1 cup at a time, until you reach your desired consistency (it should be smooth and stiff).
Attach a #12 tip to a decorating bag and fill the bag with butter cream.
To fill your cupcake – Insert the tip, about ½ way into the center (the top of your tip should be visible). Squeeze gently, turning the cupcake slowly as you fill. If the top starts to crack you are over filling.
Make the Ganache. You will need:
- 2/3 cup of heavy cream
- 10 ounces of semi sweet chocolate (I used chocolate chips)
Place your chocolate in a large bowl. Pour the cream in a medium sauce pan and bring to a boil. Watch carefully as it will boil over in a matter of seconds! Remove the cream from the heat and pour over the chocolate. Let it rest for about 5 minutes and then gently stir until all the chocolate is melted and it has a smooth, shiny, appearance. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of Ganache onto the top of your cupcake. I like to use the back of the spoon to spread it around, making sure there is a flat surface for writing.
Top immediately with candy/sprinkles, or let it cool completely before piping on the tradition loop or any other writing. (I used leftover butter cream and a #3 tip to decorate these cupcakes).