About Me

4.21.2015

Celebrate Earth Day with Desert Cactus + Succulent Cupcakes

Celebrate Earth Day with Desert Cactus + Succulent Cupcakes

Celebrate Earth Day with Desert Cactus + Succulent Cupcakes

Earth Day is a day to celebrate our planet - the place that we all live, the place we all should be thankful to live. I'm super excited to celebrate mother nature and our beautiful planet this year, so excited in fact, that I made a batch of cupcakes to celebrate! These cupcakes aren't your ordinary, run-of-the-mill cupcakes though; I made these cupcakes to resemble one of my favorite parts of our earth, these desert cupcakes make the perfect dessert for Earth Day and will wow your guests with their rich flavors and decadent accents!

Celebrate Earth Day with Desert Cactus + Succulent Cupcakes

Even if you aren't well versed in fondant, this recipe is something you can try to recreate... I promise it's not complicated and the rich, moist cake is the perfect way to satisfy your sweet tooth!

Celebrate Earth Day with Desert Cactus + Succulent Cupcakes


Ingredients  
   

Chocolate Cake:    
2 cups gluten-free all-purpose flour   
2 cups sugar
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
1½ teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
½ cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water    

Fondant:
1 package marshmallow cream
3-4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar    
4 teaspoons solid vegetable shortening
Decorating Icing in Green & Red

Icing Ingredients:
2-3 cups confectioners' sugar
2/3 stick butter
3 tsp cocoa powder
1 tsp vanilla
splash of milk
Candy Rocks

Cake Instructions     

Preheat oven to 350ยบ F. Prepare cupcake tins with reusable cupcake liners.

Add flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, salt and espresso powder to a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Whisk through to combine or, using your paddle attachment, stir through flour mixture until combined well.  

Celebrate Earth Day with Desert Cactus + Succulent Cupcakes

Add milk, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla to flour mixture and mix together on medium speed until well combined. Reduce speed and carefully add boiling water to the cake batter. Beat on high speed for an additional minute to add air to the batter.

Distribute cake batter into cupcake liners. Bake for 25+ minutes (until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean).

Remove from the oven and allow to cool, remove from the pan and cool completely.

Now we'll start with the fondant, all you'll need to do is fold the confectioners sugar into the marshmallow cream, about one cup at a time.

Once they are fairly well blended, add in shortening and decorating icing (for color) and start to knead with your hands like you would a dough. Continue to knead until thoroughly mixed, adding more decorating icing as needed for color.

Wrap colored fondant in plastic wrap and place to the side for at least 5 hours. If you want, you can leave the fondant out overnight, if you have extra time this is actually your best bet.

Celebrate Earth Day with Desert Cactus + Succulent Cupcakes

Next I made the icing ... You'll simply need to heat the butter and then mix all the ingredients together. Then lightly apply icing to each cupcake.

Celebrate Earth Day with Desert Cactus + Succulent Cupcakes

Once icing is applied use candy rocks to decorate each desert-scape and place in refrigerator until fondant has become the desired consistency.

When the fondant is ready, begin to shape each cactus. This was really, truly a trial-and-error process... but my tip to you is to roll everything into a ball and shape it from there. Looking to form a short stubby cactus? Just roll a bit of green fondant into a ball and then shape into a cactus. Wanting to make succulents? Make a BUNCH of tiny balls and flatten in between your fingers to form a leaf like shape. I'm no fondant expert but I think over-all that if I can make these, anyone can!

Celebrate Earth Day with Desert Cactus + Succulent Cupcakes

I'm pretty happy with how these cupcakes turned out. The cake is SO moist it falls apart and the icing is just the right "sandy" look to make these desert cupcakes have the perfect look! I love celebrating our planet, especially when it includes sharing adorable Earth Day cupcakes with my friends. What's your favorite way to celebrate our planet?


Celebrate Earth Day with Desert Cactus + Succulent Cupcakes

Get Free Updates in your Inbox
Follow me on:
facebook twitter gplus pinterest rss
'

Printfriendly