My contributions for the day include Wonton Tacos (yes, an oxymoron but delicious nonetheless) and Groundhog Cupcakes. For the Wonton Tacos, I simply browned some ground round, added hot taco seasoning and chopped jalapenos. Then I took Wonton wrappers and put them in my mini-muffin pan filling them full of the cooked hamburger mixture. Then topped with cheese and baked for 10 minutes in a 350 degree oven. That's it although next time I will get tomato and lettuce to top them with just before serving. That would make a complete taco!
As for the Groundhog Cupcakes, here are the recipes. I used Martha's recipe for the cupcakes and the Swiss Meringue Buttercream recipe for the icing.
White Cupcakes (by Martha Stewart)
Makes 3 dozen
- 4 1/2 cups sifted cake flour (not self-rising)
- 2 tablespoons baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (2 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 2 1/4 cups sugar
- 7 large egg whites
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake or muffin tins with papers; set aside. Into a medium bowl, sift together cake flour, baking powder, and salt. Combine milk and vanilla in a glass measuring cup.
- Place butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, and beat until pale and creamy. With mixer on medium speed, gradually add sugar in a steady stream; continue beating until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to low.
- Add flour mixture to butter mixture in three batches, alternating with the milk mixture and starting and ending with the flour. Do not overbeat.
- In a clean bowl of electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg whites on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form. Fold one-third of the whites into flour mixture to lighten. Fold in remaining egg whites in two batches, being careful not to deflate the whites.
- Pour batter into prepared tins, filling cups to about 1/2 inch from the tops. Bake until a cake tester inserted near the centers comes out clean and the tops spring back when pressed lightly in the center, 18 to 20 minutes. Remove from oven; let cool completely before icing or storing.
Makes about 9 cups, enough for about 28 cupcakes
- 2 1/2 cups sugar
- 10 large egg whites
- 4 cups (8 sticks or 2 pounds) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- Place sugar and egg whites in the heat-proof bowl of an electric mixer. Set bowl over a pan of gently simmering water, and whisk until sugar has dissolved and egg whites are hot to the touch, about 3 minutes. Test by rubbing the mixture between your fingers; it should feel completely smooth.
- Transfer bowl to mixer stand. Using the whisk attachment, beat on high speed until mixture has cooled completely and formed stiff and glossy peaks, about 10 minutes.
- Add the butter, one piece at a time, and beat until incorporated after each addition. Don't worry if the buttercream appears curdled after all the butter has been added; it will become smooth again with continued beating. Add vanilla, and beat just until combined.
- Switch to the paddle attachment, and beat on the lowest speed to eliminate any air pockets, about 5 minutes. If using buttercream within several hours, cover bowl with plastic wrap, and set aside at room temperature in a cool environment. Or transfer to an airtight container, and store in the refrigerator, up to 3 days. Before using, bring buttercream to room temperature, and beat on the lowest speed with the paddle attachment until smooth, about 5 minutes.
- Baked cupcakes
- Almond Joy candy
- White frosting
- White jelly beans
- Black decorators' gel
- Watermelon slice candy
- Brown M&M's Minis
- Chocolate cookie
For the groundhog's eyes, trim the ends from a white jelly bean, stick them in place with frosting, then dot them with black decorators' gel. Add a tiny triangle cut from a watermelon slice candy for a nose, brown M&M's Minis for ears and cheeks, and a tiny rectangular piece of white jelly bean for teeth. Sprinkle chocolate cookie crumbs around the partially emerged groundhog, and he's ready to greet his fans.