9/19/11

5 Copycat Hostess Cupcakes


I love Hostess Cupcakes.  The chocolate ones.

Don't tell anyone, but my favorite part is the frosting.  I slowly and carefully peel it off .... and save it for last.  Last is best, right?

Topless Hostess Cupcake


That's when I noticed the little white dot of filling on top of the now topless cupcake.  So THAT'S how the filling got in ~ just like the three little dots of filling on the bottom of Twinkies ...

When ATK (or was it Cook's Country?)  re-created this childhood treat of mine, I immediately bookmarked the recipe ...   and forgot about it until now.

The cake batter comes together very easily: cocoa, semi sweet chocolate chips and hot water.  I chose to omit the espresso powder.


Next, sugar, sour cream, canola oil, eggs and vanilla are whipped together.  The chocolate mixture is poured in.


Dry ingredients are added:  all purpose flour, baking soda, and salt.  That's it!

ATK greases the muffin tins and dusts them with flour.  Welcome cupcake liners!

Oh, and a muffin/ice cream scoop comes in very handy (this one holds 1/4 cup)  ... I am never sure what "2/3 full" really means!


While they are baking in the oven, I get ready to make the filling.

Water and unflavored gelatin are put into a microwave for 30 seconds.  Butter, vanilla and a pinch of salt are added. 


After a five minute cool-down, marshmallow fluff or creme* is added...

*You MUST use marshmallow creme.  Regular marshmallows have a higher concentration of gelatin.  My neighbor made this recipe with regular marshmallows and ended up with a marshmallow inside her cupcake, instead of a creamy marshmallow-y center ...


This is whisked smooth and put into the fridge to set up.

Hmmmm.....marshmallow Jello, anyone??


I used an apple corer to make the hole in the cooled cupcakes.  You could use a small serrated knife or a grapefruit knife.


I used my fingertips to carefully remove the hole ...


and piped the marshmallow filling inside.


Only the top was put back on ~ not the entire "core" that was pulled out.  I had a pile of crumbs that were left over, which I promptly ate.  Mmmmmmmm....this is a very tender cake!

The frosting is simply semi sweet chocolate chips and unsalted butter, melted in the microwave.

Simple, isn't it?


The recipe says to use the remaining 1/3 cup of marshmallow fluff for the squiggle design.  I found it to be very runny and added powdered sugar until I got a piping consistency.


This is one of my earlier attempt to pipe with a runny filling.  Let's crack it open and see what's inside!

Ooooooh... I'm getting excited ... feeling like a kid again!


Verdict?

This is nothing like the Hostess cupcake that I remember.  This cupcake is lighter, more tender, and the ganache is fantastic!!

The filling became runny once I stirred it .... did it not "set" in the fridge long enough?  Did I not cook the gelatin long enough?

I checked the date on the marshmallow creme ... it had a "best by" date over two months ago.

That must be it.  Marshmallows change in texture and consistency over time, so NEXT time, I'm going to try a fresh batch of marshmallow creme.  Or try a different filling recipe from other bloggers listed below.  Did you know that you can freeze marshmallows?  Yup!

Yes, there is going to be a NEXT time ~ I got great reviews from the neighborhood taste testers!!

Hostess Copycat Cupcakes
(4x6 recipe download)     (full page printable recipe)


Other bloggers inspired by this Hostess Cupcake:

My Baking Addiction ~ she used 7 min. frosting for her filling
Heather Drive
17 and Baking ~ makes mini versions of these
Bake at 350 ~ You have to check out her ADORABLE squiggle lines and buttercream filling
The Sensitive Epicure has a GLUTEN free version....gotta check it out!
Sugar Derby made these into Cupcake BALLS!

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