Ok. I'll admit it. I'm an absentee blogger.
Before you go blaming yourself, head over to the Cupcake Menu and check out all the exciting new additions! You see? Mommy's just been in the kitchen whipping up some new flavours - it's not your fault, little one!
OR IS IT? ಠ_ಠ
Maybe if you subscribed to my RSS feed, or cleaned your room, or spent less time alone in the bathroom, Mommy and her blog would still love each other.
But the blog and I are going to give it another go. In fact, here's a fun cupcake tutorial just in time for the Oscars way late for the Oscars!
It may look like a hamster-sized tub of popcorn, but it's actually a cupcake, covered in frosting, marshmallows and wearing a print-out-able sleeve. And here's how to make them:
Bake yourself a batch of cupcakes, in any baking cup you like. Maybe try my Burnt Butter Brown Sugar Cupcakes whynot? Any flavour will do, but it's better if it's a light coloured cupcake so that the attached popcorn will all blend in, colour-wise.
While your cupcakes are baking, start on the grueling process that is prepping the marshmallows. This step is best performed accompanied by an episode or two of Firefly, and a helpful pair of hands, like those of a Mr. B. The 'popcorn marshmallows' take a good amount of time, but can be made in advance and stored in a ziplock bag until you need them.
Start with a single MINI marshmallow:
With a pair of scissors, cut halfway down the marshmallow, from the top:
Rotate the marshmallow, and cut halfway down the marshmallow again, creating an X-shaped cut in the top:
Now flip your marshmallow, and on a piece of waxed paper, (or clean surface,) smoosh that little bugger down with your finger. I smoosh down and wiggle it in little circles for about five seconds:
When flipped back over, it'll give your marshmallow the look of a piece of popcorn! You can mix it up a bit, cutting some marshmallows only once instead of twice, or into three sections in order to make the popcorn look varied.
To give your popcorn that 'buttered' look, you can brush it with some powdered food dye that can be purchased online. In a pinch, yellow Kool-Aid can also be used, but is not quite as vibrant. You can also brush on liquid food dye, but allow it to dry before eating, as nobody likes a soggy 'shmallow.
The buttering step is actually better done when the cupcakes are assembled, but I took the photograph at this point for some crazy reason. Just to confuse you I suppose.
Now that you've got all your marshmallows smooshed and your cupcakes baked, it's time to print out the cupcake wrappers. Download this PDF Printable, print them out onto some cardstock paper, then cut them out:
It's best to use a glossy paper, because the frosted cupcakes will touch the liner, and a non-glossy paper may develop grease stains from the buttercream.
Take one of your cupcakes and wrap the cupcake wrapper around it to see how big it should be. Stick the edge of the wrapper to itself using two-sided or regular clear tape. Use this one as a template for sizing the rest.
Pop your cupcakes into the wrappers. They should be nice and tight at the top so they don't shift around in the wrapper when picked up. You may need to press the cupcake down into the wrapper a bit with the palm of your hand. (The bottom of your cupcake and the bottom of the liner don't need to line up, so don't squish down too far.)
Next, frost your cupcakes with your choice of frosting. Anything lightly coloured is fine - a tub of store bought vanilla frosting would work great. I made a buttercream that I flavoured with Wilton Butter Flavour to really give them that 'popcorn' taste. You don't need too much frosting per cupcake, just about a 1/4 inch layer on top to adhere the marshmallows.
Press your prepared marshmallows into the frosting. They should be tight together so you barely see the frosting underneath. After completely covering the top in marshmallows, I smooshed them down with my palm so they made a nice, even mound on top of the cupcake.
Lastly, now is when you want to add the 'butter' by brushing on some yellow dye with a large, soft paintbrush. Heavy in some areas, none in others, just like real movie theatre popcorn.
And there you have 'em! Movie Night Cupcakes. Great for that Marvel Movie Marathon you're planning before going to see The Avengers this May.
Now, let's never fight again.