28 April 2011

Cookie Monster! Cupcakes

Following on from my Easter weekend baking exploits; making cakes for my nephews 2nd birthday. I couldn't resist making some Cookie Monster cupcakes (he loves his cookie monster t-shirt after all). And I am glad I did when they were met with an 'ooooh' and even a 'no, mine!' as we tried to share them out!

And the great thing is, they were not difficult to make. Honest!

I made the eyes the day before so they dried out a bit - I used pre-made sugarpaste rolling a small amount of it on a surface until about 3mm thick (don't forget to sprinkle the surface with a bit of icing sugar to stop it sticking). I used the bottom of a frosting tip to cut out the eyes. Then after placing the eyes on a small plate I used a tube of black decorating gel to make the pupils by putting a blob on each eye - the gel works really well as it has a life-like sheen to it. Remember to put the pupil near to one edge so you can achieve the cross-eyed look when you place it on the cucpake.

For the cakes I whipped up a batch of my chocolate cupcakes, when they were cool I made sure they were nicely rounded on top (the cupcakes can 'erupt' so trim it to get a nice smooth rounded working surface).

Then I cut the oreo's in half. The trick is to use a large sharp knife, place the blade flat across the surface and push down quickly and evenly across the length of the knife. Once I had the half oreos I used one to help cut the right size orange segment shape into one side of each cupcake at a 45degree angle (it needs to be just a bit wider than the oreo, and this will help the cookie to sit in place).

Then for the fun bit! I made my simple vanilla buttercream frosting recipe with a few drops of royal blue colouring. I put a thin coating of the frosting on the cupcakes making sure there was a good amount in the 'mouth'. This helps you not see the cake if there are any gaps in the fur.
'Grass' frosting tip

The key to get the furry look is to use a 'grass' frosting tip as pictured right. I practiced using this tip on a the bottom of a mug before starting on the cupcakes - but to be honest, the chaotic look of the fur meant mistakes didn't really show anyway. I simply started at one edge of the cupcake and worked in to the mouth. 

And done! Next was to simply insert the oreo into the mouth and place the eyes. Voila! Fun cupcakes that any kid will love!

Note: if you don't use frosting bags and tips or want to buy the grass tip, you could either create a rough texture to the frosting with a spoon or fork, OR make half the amount of buttercream and dye some dessicated coconut blue (put coconut and a few drops of dye in a food zip bag and keep shaking until it's evenly coloured), then after you coat the cupcakes with a layer of frosting you can dip them in the coconut.

In the words of the cookie monster: Cooooookiiiiiieeeeessssss!

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