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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Cupcakes with a little Heart!

I know I haven't posted in a little while and I promised....  I'm thankful for those who have told me to post because they miss seeing them. You all have a special place in my heart... which brings me to today's post.

Bringing my children home to "virtual school" has been wonderful in all ways except but including socialization. I'm thankful that my newly minted teenager doesn't have the daily peer pressures of keeping up, but I'm also painfully aware that she is missing spend the night's with classmates and school dances. Bringing cupcakes, homemade valentines and goodies to school on Valentine's has always been such a huge school tradition that this particular holiday points out to me how much they must miss those occasions. So with this I set out this year to overdo Valentine's and I achieved the goal with remarkable agility!

We started our day with pink strawberry banana smoothies with pink straws and heart shaped boiled and deviled eggs. We had heart shaped cupcakes with pink frosting and for dinner I topped it off with heart shaped hotdogs with tiny cupid arrows made from cheddar and linguine. I can thank Pinterest for that one.

As promised, here's the idea behind the uber simple cupcakes for the complicated "elementary" set palate....

Rosy Pink Heart Cupcakes

1 Box of Duncan Hines Dark Chocolate Fudge Cake Mix (yes, I am loyal to Duncan Hines, choose another brand at your own risk... if I'm not making it from scratch than it's got to be Duncan)
Water, Eggs, Vegetable Oil to package directions
1 Heart shape cookie cutter
1 stick of butter, softened
Cherry Jello
4 cups of powdered sugar
1/3 cup of milk
Pretty pink decorate sugar

Make chocolate cake mix to package directions. Divide into 2 (12 well) well greased cupcake pans, bake at 350 for 19 to 21 minutes (again according to directions). DO NOT PUT IN CUPCAKE PAPERS YET.

After they cool, remove from pans. Slice off the top evenly of each cupcake. Put bottom into decorate cupcake liner. With the tops only -- cut out your heart shape from the center of each top and then set the hearts aside. Eat all of the excess. :-)

With hand mixer or stand mixer, cream butter and then add the 4 cups of powdered sugar and 1/3 cup of milk until creamy and well incorporated. Gradually add in Cherry Jello until you reach desired color and flavor. IT DOES NOT TAKE MUCH.

Pipe (I use a ziploc bag for this) onto the cupcake bottoms in pretty circular pattern. Top each cupcake with a chocolate cupcake heart. Sprinkle on the sparkly decorative pink sugar. Serve to willing children sparingly (it's the best way to torture them....  ) and with love.