Thursday, October 27, 2011

Iced Cupcakes and Fish- Amelia Bedelia

"And Amelia Bedelia iced her cakes. 'Those do look nice,' she said. 'And there's enough icing left over to ice the fish too.' Amelia Bedelia picked up a fish by its tail....She iced one side of the fish. Then she iced the other side."
"And suddenly everybody was laughing. Mrs. Rogers began to pour the tea. Amelia Bedelia served the chocolate cupcakes. And the ladies said they were the best cakes they had ever eaten."
Amelia Bedelia and the Surprise Shower by Peppy Parish, Illustrated by Fritz Siebel and Barbara Siebel Thomas

Amelia Bedelia, if you are not aware, is a maid from a children's book series, who takes her employeers' instructions too literally. An example of which is when told to draw the drapes, she sketches a picture of them. My personal favorite is when she dresses the something resembling lederhosen. The only reason she never gets fired is that she's a great baker. Really.

I took this to heart as a kid. "What happened to the living room wall!" "I made it pretty with blue paint, Mommy!" Silence. "And I also made cupcakes!" "Oh, that's alright then." These books are fun for kids, have great drawings, and are An I Can Read Books or as I like to call them So You Think You Can Read? Well, do ya punk?

The chocolate covered fish always fascinated me as a kid. Even though I knew they were real fish that probably gave the one woman who ate them food poisoning, there's something undeniably attractive about that much chocolate. But everybody knows chocolate fish are sort of odd. You're more likely to see something like chocolate sea shells. I knew I would never come across it in real life.

Until I did.

It was on sale too! Can you imagine people not wanting chocolate in the shape of a fish?

But if you can not find a fish made out of solid chocolate, then this might be a fun alternative.

Oh, and let's make cupcakes too. Just 'cause.

Starlight Yellow Cake Cupcakes
(recipe by Betty Crocker)
makes 24 cupcakes

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cup butter(butter-flavored Crisco works as well), softened

1 1/4 cups milk
3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 large eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put liners in a muffin tin.

Beat all ingredients together in a large bowl on low speed for 30 seconds, scraping bowl occasionally. Beat on high speed 3 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour batter into a muffin tin, filling each about 3/4 of the way full.

Bake for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Cool cupcakes.

Frost with desired icing and add any toppings. I used sliced almonds, peanut butter candy and extra cake crumbs.

Chocolate Icing
(from Joy of Cooking)
makes 1 1/4 cups

3 ounces unsweetened chocolate
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 hot coffee/cream/milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups powdered sugar

Melt together the chocolate and butter in a double boiler. Remove from heat and stir in the liquids. Then gradually add the powdered sugar to taste. 

I recommend you make a double batch.

Chocolate Fish
Gummy Fish
Chocolate or Warm Leftover Chocolate Icing

Melt the chocolate in the microwave in a bowl for 15 seconds at a time until chocolate melts. Drizzle the hot chocolate or warm frosting over one side of the fish. Chill, then flip over and frost the other side. Use as garnish on your cupcakes or as a fun treat.

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