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Christmas Cupcakes With Candy Presents

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cupcakes-presentsI spotted this cute idea for candy presents on cupcakes in the check-out line today at the grocery store on the Taste of Home magazine. These little candy presents are made simply with Starburst candies and Fruit-Roll-Ups. It was alot of fun to do this activity with my son. He loves for me to make cupcakes and so he can decorate them. I did decorate the little presents on the cupcakes pictured. He, at three years old, was able to roll up some of the Fruit Roll-Up strips in his hands and place it on top of a Starburst candy. They didn’t look quite as perfect, but they still looked like presents. We were both really proud of the cupcakes he decorated. For the cupcake recipe, I used a dark chocolate recipe that I modified from allrecipes.com. I have been wanting to try it for a while, it has rave reviews. It was rich and moist, and had an excellent crumb. You can use any cupcake recipe though, or just a store-bought cake mix.

Dark Chocolate Cupcake Recipe

Adapted from allrecipes.com Dark Chocolate Cake I

2 cups boiling water
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup butter, at room temperature
2 1/4 cups sugar
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 3/4 cups ap flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Easy Buttercream Frosting Recipe

4 oz butter, at room temperature
4 oz vegetable shortening
1 lb powdered sugar
2 – 3 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Additional Ingredients

Starburst Candies
Fruit Roll-Ups- Cut in strips for the ribbon
Silver Sugar Crystals

Method

For Cupcakes

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, add boiling water and cocoa powder. Mix to combine, then let cool.

2. In stand mixer, add butter and sugar. Cream until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, until incorporated. In another bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In stand mixer add cocoa powder and water and mix. Then add flour mixture and vanilla extract to stand mixer bowl. Mix well until batter is smooth, scrapping down sides. (Batter will be runny.)

3. Pour batter into cupcake pan and bake for 20 – 25 minutes, or until cupcakes pass the toothpick test.

For Frosting

1. While cupcakes are cooling, add vegetable shortening and butter to stand mixer. With the whisk attachment, whisk until well combined. Add powdered sugar with mixer on low. Mix until everything starts to look grainy.

2. Add vanilla extract. Add milk, a tablespoon at a time, until frosting is the desired consistency. Whip on high until light and fluffy.

For presents

1. Cut fruit roll-ups in narrow strips and use to wrap Starburst candies.

Makes 30 cupcakes.

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