Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Halloween creepy cobweb cupcakes

I'm so very behind on my blogging, I have a number of cookbook reviews on hold as well as some fabulous desserts but I can't resist posting a photo of these creepy cobweb cupcakes because they are timely and I am a journo and I am nothing if not timely.

After all, I have a pumpkin on my doorstep, an Elmo costume in my son's closet and a gigantic bag of teeth-rotting chocolate-coated candy in my basement. Yup, Halloween is just around the corner and you probably have a costume party or two to attend. Rather than the ubiquitous caramel apples, take these as host gifts instead and you'll seem thoughtful and gifted all at once.

I made these cupcakes using a simple vanilla recipe, but really you can use any cupcake base. The book that I got this idea from suggested using a pumpkin muffin as a base but some children may balk at that flavour, don't you agree? A white cake base is easier to work with, but it's your call.

So, how do you create these cobwebs? Star by melting some white chocolate. I should really post a specific gram amount, but I eyeballed it. Just don't start out with a lot, and melt more as you go.

You could do the double boiler method, and slowly melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a simmering pot of hot water, or you could just do what I did - melt it in a bowl in the microwave for about 20-30 seconds at a time, stirring every time you pull it out until it's just melted.

Take a teaspoon and put a dollop on top of the cupcake and spread it using a rubber spatula. Then melt some dark chocolate, or use leftover ganache icing like I did, and put some in a piping bag with a very thin piping tip.

You will need to pipe a dot in the middle of the cupcake, surrounded by three concentric circles. Then, taking a toothpick, draw about eight lines starting from the middle dot to the edge of the largest circle. Voila, creepy cobweb cupcakes.

Substitutions: You could use milk chocolate if you wanted, but the darker the chocolate, the better the contrast.

Would I make these again? Surely. Sometimes whipping up mountains of buttercream and sprinkling them with rainbow confetti can get tiresome, and predictable, and I want my decorating to be fast, easy, seamless.

Grade: Four stars out of five. Charming, cute, yes and yes. Chic? No. And if you don't have the proper piping tip, you are fresh out of luck.


Brenda said...

You did a REALLY good job on these Mary. I would hate to see what mine would look like if I attempted this. They'd be creepy and scary alright but in a different way. I'm useless at any kind of decorating. Halloween cupcakes for me means orange-coloured frosting with black sprinkles. :o) Great job!

Mary said...

Aw thanks Brenda! I tried!