Thursday, 12 August 2010

Make Mine Whoopies - Part 1

Disney Classic #8 - Make Mine Music

So this post comes a little later than planned, (I originally started writing it on the 27th June!) Unfortunately I fell quite seriously ill at the end of June, so the Disney cakes and the blog took a back seat... I'm now starting to get back on track though and have a few cakes to write about, so hopefully the blog will return to its former glory (and a weekly post).

Again I'd never seen this movie (although I had seen a couple of the segments!) so it was difficult at first to come up with an idea for a cake. So I did a little background research into the movie.
During the war many of the Disney Studio animators were drafted into the army, and those remaining were given the task of creating propaganda shorts. This lead to Disney having very few resources to continue to create full length features, despite their growing popularity, and this lead to a series of feature length "anthologies" of shorts until the release of Cinderella in 1950.

Make Mine Music was intended to be a contemporary version of Fantasia, using popular music rather than classical music.

And that was my inspiration for the cake... a contemporary version of a classic. Ladies and gents, allow me to introduce to you the "whoopie pie" - described as a modern twist to the classic cupcake, whoopie pies are the new "in vogue" baked good. (Or so the Internet tells me - I didn't even know that baked goods had a vogue.) And doubly relevant considering I made cupcakes for Fantasia!!

Those Whoopie Pies really made my mouth water!

I'm going to take a moment here to apologise in advance for the length of this post. I got a bit carried away and decided to make three different types of whoopies, so below, rather than one recipe, there are actually three!! Original recipes found here, here and here.

EDIT October 2012: I decided this blog post was too long to be useful to anybody, so I've decided to split it into three parts - one part for each of the recipes. Below is the recipe for the Salted Peanut Whoopies. The Vanilla Whoopies can now be found here, and the Chocolate variety can now be found here!

Salted Peanut Whoopie Pies

Prep time: Overnight     Cook time: 10-12 mins    Makes 12 Whoopies

For all of the other whoopies, I made the frosting while the cakes were cooling. However, as the peanut frosting uses cream cheese it's best to make it the night before and leave it in the fridge to set, otherwise it can be quite runny!

For the cakes:

280g plain flour
30g cocoa powder
1tsp baking powder
2tsp bicarbonate of soda
150g light brown sugar
60ml sunflower oil
125ml creme fraiche
1 large egg
60ml boiling water

For the filling:

200g soft cheese
250g icing sugar
50g butter
100g salted peanuts

For the topping:

100g dark chocolate
100ml double cream
150g icing sugar
handful of crushed peanuts to decorate

  1. Start by making the peanut frosting for the filling. Crush the peanuts until they are like breadcrumbs. I did this by hand, mortar and pestle style, but it would be a lot easier if you had a blender. Melt the butter and set to one side to cool.
  2. Place the icing sugar and soft cheese into a large bowl and mix with an electric mixer for two minutes, gradually building up the speed. Add the cooled butter and crushed peanuts and continue to beat for a further 3 minutes. Transfer the frosting into a small bowl, cover with clingfilm and refrigerate until needed.
  3. Make the cake rounds. Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 6 and line a baking tray with greaseproof paper.
  4. Place the sugar in a large mixing bowl and break up any lumps with your hands. Sift the flour, cocoa powder, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder into the bowl and then mix together.
  5. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg, creme fraiche and oil together. Add the boiling water whilst still whisking then immediately stir the liquid into the flour and sugar mixture. Be careful not to overwork the mixture - once it has all combined stop mixing. Leave the batter to rest for 5 minutes.
  6. Using two teaspoons to shape the batter into rough balls, dollop balls of the mixture onto the baking tray, leaving adequate space for the to expand. Bake in the preheated oven for around 10-12 minutes, until firm to touch.
  7. Leave the cake rounds on the baking tray to cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire wrack to cool completely. (Note: I couldn't fit all 24 rounds on one baking tray, so I did them 12 at a time.)
  8. While the cake rounds are baking/cooling, make the chocolate cream for the topping. Break the chocolate into chunks and place in a small saucepan along with the cream. Heat on the lowest temperature, stirring continuously until all of the chocolate has melted.
  9. Remove from the heat and then sift the icing sugar into the chocolate and cream mixture. Beat the chocolate cream for around 5 minutes and then transfer into a small bowl. Leave the mixture to one side for 20-30minutes to thicken and cool.
  10. Once the cake rounds, topping and filling are all cooled/set, assemble the whoopie pies. On the peaked side of 12 of the cake rounds, spread a generous amount of the chocolate cream mixture and then sprinkle with a few crushed peanuts to decorate.
  11. Spread a generous amount of the peanut frosting on the flat side of the other 12 of the cake rounds, then sandwich the rounds together to make your whoopies!

Phew! Still here? Well, after all of that you will end up with a kitchen full of delicious whoopie pies! I think I'm going to have to try to refrain from doing too many different recipes at once as the posts end up ridiculously long (plus I had way too many whoopie pies, even after we'd all gorged on them during the film, I ended up sending everyone home with 2 or 3 pies each and still had some to spare!)

Next time it's Fun and Fancy Free, and I honed in on making the Giant's chocolate pot roast with pistachio gravy from Mickey and the Beanstalk. Yum yum!

Happy Thoughts


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