Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Fruitcakes With Meringue Mushrooms {MSC}

Whenever my kids are faced with a task that seems just too monumental to complete, I tell them to break it down into baby steps.  Taking my own advice, here are the baby steps I took to complete this month's Martha Stewart Cupcake Club Challenge - Fruitcakes with Meringue Mushrooms!

DAY 1 - The Fruitcake

OK, let's be honest.  I've never been a big fan of the fruitcake.  This fruitcake however, was filled with high quality, delicious ingredients like Medjool Dates, Turkish Apricots and Turkish Smyrna Figs.  Since I AM a big fan of the Fig Newton, I knew we were off to a good start!

It also called for lots of hazelnuts and Frangelico, a hazelnut liqueur.  And since I'm also a big fan of Nutella, I knew these ingredients would be a plus as well.  When all was assembled, the add-ins and the batter were of approximately equal proportion.

The recipe stated that this batter would make 12 cupcakes.  I ended up making 18.  (OK, so maybe I didn't fill them full enough!

DAY 2 - The Meringue

I used my mom's tried and true Seven-Minute Frosting Recipe for the mushrooms, which seemed to work out fine.  I mean, is there really such a thing as a perfect mushroom?  To make the tops, pipe a circle onto some parchment and press down the pointy tips with a wet finger.  To make the stems, pipe and pull up.  Don't worry.  They are suppose to look like that!  Bake in a 175 degree oven for about 45 minutes.

Due to time constraints, these cupcakes went to the church luncheon without mushroom toppers.
I thought they still looked pretty!

DAY 3 - The Mushrooms

The mushrooms were actually fun to make and looked real, despite my feeble efforts!
  • Step 1:  Melt dark chocolate and spread on the underside of the mushroom caps.
  • Step 2:  Spread melted white chocolate on top of that.
  • Step 3:  Use a toothpicks to create gills.  Use the same toothpick to make a hole in the center.
  • Step 4:  Using white chocolate as glue, insert the pointy side of the stem into the mushroom hole.

A dusting of cocoa powder and VOILA!  Cute little mushrooms!

These little cupcakes make a big statement and hold their own any against fruitcake naysayer.  While the kids would only pick off and eat the meringue mushrooms, I thought the cake itself was a delicious treat! (Which would explain why I secretly ate the cake they left behind!)  Thanks to Rebecca at Beurrista for today's selection and encouraging us to rise to the challenge!


  1. WOW!!! The mushrooms look awesome!
    Great job :)
    Merry Christmas!!!

  2. Lovely cakes and mushrooms. Thanks so much for baking along with me- it was a monumental task during this already crazy month.

  3. Wow! Your mushrooms look great! And I should have made 18 instead of just dividing the batter between 12 cups...I didn't think they were that full, but they ended up spreading over the top of the whole pan as they baked.

  4. I'm impressed. And I appreciate the step by step directions in case I ever decide to tackle this.