Ah, January, the month where one can buy a big box of candy canes in the grocery store for 44 cents. It’s also the month where everyone’s made new years resolutions and don’t want cupcakes. I’m guessing some of my coworkers aren’t going to be impressed with me tomorrow when I bring these in…
My plan for this was “make chocolate cupcakes, dip in candy canes, take to work” but here’s a more descriptive version in case you don’t, say, have a favourite chocolate cupcake recipe.
1. Make chocolate cupcakes
I use the following “wacky cake” recipe:
1.5 C flour
1 C sugar
3 tbsp cocoa
1 tsp baking powder
0.5 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp vinegar
1/3 C oil
1 C warm water
Preheat oven to 350F
Mix the dry ingredients (and get rid of any lumps in the cocoa).
Add wet ingredients and stir well.
Spoon into baking cups. (around 1/2 to 2/3 full)
For mini cupcakes, cook 10 min. For normal sized ones, cook around 18 mins, or until a toothpick inserted can be removed cleanly.
Note that I actually make mini and normal sized cupcakes in the same batch. In this case, just pull the tray out of the oven after 10 minutes and grab the little ones off (the silicon liners make it possible for me to do this bare handed, but your mileage may vary), then put the rest back in once you’re done. This may make the tops of the big ones look a bit less than perfect (as you can see in the back of the picture above), but it doesn’t matter since you’ll be covering them anyhow.
Make vanilla icing
I don’t use a recipe for this exactly, but…
Spoonful of butter
Splash of vanilla
Then add alternating icing sugar and milk until you have enough icing. You don’t actually want that much for this, as the extra candy on the side will make them pretty sweet.
My cake is actually vegan, so if you wanted to replace this with some sort of vegan icing, you could change this up. I suspect a water-icing sugar glaze would be enough to keep the candy canes on if you were so inclined.
Crush up some candy canes
We used wax paper and a rubber mallet for this. (When I lived in Canada, I’d use a small milk bag instead of wax paper, ’cause those things are stronger, but alas, this part of America does not have milk that comes in bags.)
John helped with the unwrapping and crushing duties!
Put the icing on the cupcakes then roll the rim of the iced cupcake in the crushed candy canes
You could, of course, dip them and cover them entirely, but they’re already pretty sweet and crunchy so I figured less is more here.
Garnish with tiny chunks of fudge
I had some leftover fudge so we used that as a final garnish for maximal abuse of new year’s resolutions.
Here’s a few extra photos I took in aid of this week’s AAW assignment, which is to use foreground/background to tell a story about two (or more) items, one in focus and one blurred. I thought the rubber mallet we used for crushing candy canes was kind of a funny contrast with the finished cupcakes.