I mentioned that I've been searching for excuses to make cupcakes from my "Hello Cupcake" book and April Fool's Day lent itself the perfect opportunity. I had family in town, a dessert to make for Dinner Group and and willing helper in my brother. Only problem was that we couldn't decide which "fake out" cupcakes to make. So, the logical solution was to make two! We had so much fun putting these together and I was delighted with how they turned out. Often times, things simply aren't as cute as they are in a book or pictures... but I thought ours turned out just as cute. They were easy to make and the final product made them even more worth doing. I love how they turned out! I'll post the mock "spaghetti" cupcakes later this week.
TV Dinner Cupcakes
1 aluminum muffin tray, with 6 spots
6 cupcakes, baked in foil liners
white frosting (at least 1 container)
green food coloring
3-4 Orange fruit chews (Starbursts, Tootsie Fruit Rolls), cut into 1/4 inch cubes
Green hard candies, such as Runts or Skittles (I liked the Runts best)
1/4 cup white melting chocolate
1 c crushed cornflakes
3 plain donut holes
1 Yellow Fruit Chew (Starburst, Toosie Fruit Rolls, Laffy Taffy), cut into a 1 inch cube
Caramel Sauce, slightly warmed for easier pouring
2-3 Tbsp. Chocolate frosting
Colored Sprinkles or Jimmies
For the Vegetables:
1. Tint about 2-3 Tbsp. of the white frosting bright green and frost 1 cupcake with the green frosting. Arrange cut up orange fruit chews and green hard candies on top, to look like peas and carrots.
For the Mashed Potatoes:
1. Frost 1 cupcake with white frosting, mounding slightly on top, and making a small well on top with a spoon.
2. Drop the yellow Starburst at an angle in the well, and pour heated caramel sauce over the frosting and Starburst, allowing it to drip down the sides, to look like gravy.
For the Dessert Cupcake:
1. Frost or Pipe chocolate frosting on top of one cupcake. Sprinkle with colored sprinkles or jimmies.
For the Chicken Legs:
1. Draw yourself a bone template. (I'll try to get my template up at some point. In the meantime, draw a long, skinny rectangle. Then place a heart on top of it, and a small triangle and the bottom. That should give you your basic shape.) Place it on a cookie sheet and cover with a piece of wax paper. Melt the white chocolate wafers in a small freezer duty Ziploc bag. Microwave in 20-30 second intervals, massaging the bag after each time. Repeat the process until the chocolate is completely smooth.
2. Press the air out of the bag, seal it, and snip a small corner form the bag, making yourself a piping bag. Pipe the bone outline onto the wax paper. Fill in the outline with the chocolate and tap the pan lightly to smooth the top of the chocolate. Repeat and make at least 3 bones, although I recommend making more, in case you break one. Refrigerate bones, until firm.
3. Lightly frost 3 cupcakes with white frosting.
4. Frost the donut holes with white frosting and place on top of the cupcakes. Now using the white frosting, frost around the donut holes to make smooth, rounded surface that tapers slightly at the top. (It's hard to describe... but you want to use the frosting to give the cupcake with donut hole on top the look of a chicken drumstick.)
5. Pour crushed cornflakes into a shallow bowl. Press donut topped cupcakes into the cornflakes, covering completely. Do this carefully. As I turned my cupcake sideways, my donut hole started to slide off. You may have to sprinkle the cornflakes over the top of the cupcake and lightly press it into the frosting with your hands. Place the cupcakes in the aluminum tray.
6. With a very sharp knife, make a slit along the top of the donut hole. It needs to be deep enough and wide enough for the chocolate bone to slide into at least 1/2 an inch. Carefully insert the chocolate bones into the slit you've made. I found this to be the trickiest part of the all the cupcakes. Once I slid in the chocolate, my cupcake started to collapse a bit. I had to use some extra cornflakes to hide the damage. But it worked!