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Categories: Cakes | Cheesecakes

Garden-Party-CupcakesIf you’ve ever played with modeling clay or Play-Doh in kindergarten, you can make these beautiful veggies in a jiffy.

Garden Party Cupcakes
Makes 24 cupcakes

2 whole graham crackers
1 stick mint chewing gum
1/4 cup white chocolate melting wafers
6 thin pretzel sticks
1 cup vanilla frosting
Green, red, orange and blue gel or paste food color
1 can (16 oz) chocolate frosting
2 cups chocolate cookie crumbs (Nabisco Oreo or Famous Chocolate Wafers)

24 vanilla cupcakes baked in white paper liners
1 cup corn flakes
9 green fruit chews (Jolly Rancher)
1 vanilla fruit chew (Tootsie Roll Midgee, AirHeads)
4 red fruit chews (Jolly Rancher)
8 orange fruit chews (Starburst)
1 teaspoons ground cinnamon
20 green M&M’s
Green apple and watermelon AirHeads
2 teaspoons multicolored chocolate-covered sunflower seeds

Seed Packs and Shovels: With a serrated knife, cut graham crackers in half crosswise. Cut two 3/4-in.-long triangles from gum to make shovel blades. Line a baking sheet with wax paper. Put white chocolate melting wafers in a ziplock bag; do not seal. Microwave 10 seconds to soften. Squeeze, return to microwave and repeat until smooth. Press out air and seal.

Snip a small corner from the bag and pipe an outline around each graham cracker. Fill in with more chocolate and spread into a smooth, thin layer to cover cracker. Place on baking sheet and refrigerate until set, about 5 minutes.

Turn each cracker over and pipe a line of melted chocolate down the center of the uncoated side. Place a pretzel stick on top of the line of chocolate, leaving about a 2-in. overhang; refrigerate until set. Cut the remaining 2 pretzel sticks into two 2-in. and two 3/4-in. lengths. Pipe a small dot of melted chocolate on one end of a 2-in. pretzel stick and attach the smaller pretzel piece crosswise to make the shovel handle. Attach the gum shovel blade to the other end of the pretzel with a dot of melted chocolate.

Tint 1/2 cup of the vanilla frosting green, 1 Tbsp red, 2 Tbsp orange and 1/4 cup blue. Spoon each color, including the remaining 1 tablespoon vanilla frosting, into separate ziplock bags, press out excess air and seal. Spoon 1/4 cup chocolate frosting into a ziplock bag, press out the excess air and seal. Snip a tiny corner from each of the bags. Pipe the vegetable names in chocolate frosting and the vegetable shapes in the colored frostings on top of the chocolate-coated side of the graham crackers.

Place chocolate cookie crumbs in a medium bowl. Spread remaining chocolate frosting on cupcakes. Roll tops of cupcakes in crumbs to cover. Arrange in 4 rows of 6 on serving platter.

Lettuce: Line a baking sheet with wax paper. Put cornflakes in a small bowl. Spoon remaining green frosting into a small microwavable bowl. Microwave until smooth, stirring often, 5 to 10 seconds. Pour over cornflakes, toss well to coat, and spread the cornflakes onto baking sheet. Chill to set, about 10 minutes. Cut 2 green fruit chews in half and shape into balls. Place 1 green ball on top of each of 4 cupcakes and arrange 8 to 12 cornflakes around balls to make the leaves. Secure with a dot of green frosting.

Radishes: Cut the vanilla fruit chew into quarters. Roll 1 red fruit chew together with 1 vanilla piece, keeping colors separate, and shape into a ball. Pinch the white end to form the radish root. Place 1 radish on top of each of 4 cupcakes, and add green-frosted cornflakes for leaves.

Carrots: Cut 2 of the orange fruit chews in half; shape each piece into a small carrot. Shape remaining 6 fruit chews into 6 large carrots. Score the sides of carrots with a knife and rub with cinnamon for “dirt.” Use a toothpick to make a small hole in the large end of each carrot. Cut 2 of the green fruit chews into thin strips and roll each strip between fingers to look like carrot tops. Press 4 or 5 strips into the hole in the top of each carrot. Arrange carrots on top of 5 cupcakes.

Peas: Roll out each of the remaining 5 green fruit chews into a 3 x 1 inch oval 1/8 inch thick. Press 4 green M&M’s onto one side of each oval. Fold the other side over to cover the candies slightly. Pinch the ends and place 1 pea pod on top of each of 5 cupcakes. Cut thin strips from AirHeads and arrange around the pea pods as vines.

Insert the pretzel end of each sign into tops of 4 cupcakes. Place at the head of the rows. Insert the shovel blades into frosting of 2 cupcakes; scatter sunflower seeds around shovels. Place in rows with radishes and lettuce.

Excerpt from Hello, Cupcake! by Alan Richardson and Karen Tack, copyright ©2008. Published by Houghton Mifflin Co. Photography © Alan Richarson

Hello, Cupcake!: Irresistibly Playful Creations Anyone Can Make by Karen Tack and Alan Richardson
* Paperback: 240 pages
* Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
* Language: English
* ISBN-10: 0618829253

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Posted on Apr 21, 2014

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