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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Let Me Be Your Hostess

I grew up eating Hostess baked goods.  Every once in a while my mother would go over to the Hostess Bakery outlet in Van Nuys and load up on the the goodies my sister and I loved.  She would come home with all kinds of treats from Twinkies to Tiger Tails.

Do you know what a Tiger Tail is?  Well, I'll tell you.  It's a Twinkie that's striped with jam and instead of white cream filling, it has jam inside.  They were a most under appreciated cake as I recall, hence their easy availability at the Hostess Bakery outlet.

There truly wasn't a Hostess product that I didn't love, although I recall thinking that the Donettes were a little dull when compared with a Snowball.  My favorite treats were the pink Snowballs and the little devils food cupcakes with the distinctive squiggle on top.

Back when Charlie and Kate were little, I decided to introduce them to the joys of Hostess.  I bought them Twinkies and Snowballs and those little cakes were still magical.  I have to admit that I did have a nibble of a Snowball and it wasn't quite as delicious as I recalled, although it was still just as pretty.

Well, the other day I was reading one of my favorite blogs Confessions of a Cookbook Queen and there it was: a recipe for faux Hostess Cupcakes.  What I really loved about this recipe was that it didn't pretend to be a gourmet version of a Hostess cupcake.  This recipe called for cake mix and ready made frosting.  This was a Hostess Cupcake I could get my arms around.

I had forgotten how easy baking with a cake mix is.  It took me about 22 seconds to make the batter and throw the cupcakes into the oven?  Okay, it's true that cake mix doesn't make as delicious a cake as making it from scratch, but convenience is worth something, isn't it?

Anyway, I made the cupcakes and then whipped up the cream filling and piped it into the cooled cupcakes.  A quick dip in melted chocolate frosting and a white icing squiggle on top and I had my own homemade Hostess Cupcakes.  (Practice with the squiggle.  Mine got much better by the end.)
After baking the cupcakes, I used a large tip to pipe in the cream filling.

Then I dipped the filled cupcakes into the melted chocolate frosting.

The finished product!  

I felt really nostalgic sending my faux Hostess Cupcakes off to school with Kate to give to her friends at lunch.  School... just where a Hostess Cupcake is most at home.

Recipe:  Homemade Hostess Cupcakes
(Confessions of a Cookbook Queen)



2 dozen Devils Food Cupcakes, baked and cooled (use a mix, make homemade, whatever floats your dinghy)
3 cups powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup boiling water
1 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
6 Tablespoons cold butter, cut into pieces


1 can of chocolate frosting
1 can of vanilla frosting, for squiggles


Prepare filling:  In the bowl of a mixer, combine powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla.  Add boiling water and whip with the whisk attachment on medium low speed until smooth and cool.  Add shortening and butter and beat on medium low until combined.  Increase speed to medium high and beat for about 4-5 minutes, until smooth, fluffy, and doubled in volume.

Fill cupcakes.  You can use a piping bag and tip, or cut a hole with a knife, fill with a spoon, and place the cut out cake back on top to cover.

Remove lid and foil from frosting and microwave on high for about a minute, stirring every 15 seconds until it is the consistency of hot fudge.  Dip the tops of the cupcakes in the frosting, holding upside down to allow excess to drip off so they aren’t messy.

Once frosting has cooled and firmed up, pipe squiggles on with canned white frosting (or remaining filling) if desired.


Filling recipe is adapted from The Whimsical Bakehouse’s House Buttercream

1 comment:

  1. Oh my, these look amazing. I was a big hostess cupcake fan growing up, but these days I can't stand them - and we currently have a hostess bakery outlet right down the street! But these homemade ones - are making my mouth water. And your pictures (especially the first one) look great!