Spring has officially arrived and it feels oh so heavenly. While it may have just turned Spring-ish outside in the beautiful Pacific Northwest it has been Spring in our kitchen for weeks.
Each new season brings its own excitement. Rich Hot Chocolate in the Winter, loads of pumpkins and squash in the Fall and enough fruit to fill a truck-load of pies in the Summer. For those of us who have practically hibernated during the last six months we are nearly bursting with excitement at even the hint of new produce and fragile buds hoping for a chance to break through.
While snow was still on the ground our little temporary kitchen has been turning out Spring edibles in hopes of summoning the long lost sun. We began with something sweet, as I usually do.
I am not typically much of a “girly girl” but there is something about Spring that summons my inner pig-tail wearing, pink loving princess that seeks out everything petite and adorable. Maybe it’s the inundation of baby chicks, happy hopping bunnies, and pastel coated sugary eggs that flood every corner of every store these days but whatever it is inside me happened to fall in love with this edible craft found at MarthaStewart.com.
And really can you blame me? Such a simple craft that is both cute (dare I say that word) to look at and incredibly delicious – which is really why we are here after all.
My nearly three-year-old son, Baron and my niece Emma who is 4 helped me create these sweet little chicks. Baron’s is the one covered in candy (definitely his mother’s son) and Emma’s is pink – everything with Emma is pink.
I chose to create my little chicks out of a Carrot Cake Cupcake. A little spiced cake that is as moist as the dew covered grass and most importantly, is topped with a very lightly sweetened cream cheese frosting.
Even if you don’t fall for the pastel rainbow that hovers above the chick and bunny populated earth during these happy, sunny Spring days I still encourage you to eat these petite cakes. You can skip the crafty part and dive right into the consuming of the cake. You won’t be sorry and heck, you might even find yourself wearing pink.
3 cups All-Purpose Flour
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
1 Tbl. Baking Soda
1 Tbl. Cinnamon
1 tsp. Salt
3/4 cup Olive Oil
3/4 cup Canola Oil
4 large eggs
1 Tbs. Vanilla
1 cup Sweetened Coconut
2 cups finely grated carrots
1 cup drained crushed pineapple
Makes approximately 24 cupcakes
Line 2 muffin tins with cupcake paper. Pre-heat your oven to 350*
Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl using a whisk. Combine the oil, eggs and vanilla in a separate bowl and beat well. Carefully combine the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients. Mix well. Fold in the carrots and coconut.
Fill each cupcake 3/4 full and bake 20 minutes until toothpick comes out nearly clean.
Let cool in pan for five minutes then continue to cool on a wire rack.
8 oz. Cream Cheese (softened)
4 oz. Butter (softened)
1/4 tsp. Salt
1 tsp Vanilla
1/4 cup Powdered Sugar
Combine all ingredients and beat until smooth. To avoid lumps make sure the butter and cream cheese are very soft.
2 cups (more or less) coconut (dyed or simply toasted. To dye – mix coconut with a couple of drops of food coloring. To toast – bake coconut on a sheet tray in a 350* oven for about 10 minutes or until golden)
Assorted candy for facial features. We used black gel color for the eyes, almonds for the beak, tic tacs and good and plentys for the feet and hair-do.
Remove the cupcake paper from the cupcake once completely cool. Cover the cupcake with cream cheese frosting. Then cover the cupcake with coconut. Add candy embellishments. Finally, devour – if you haven’t already done so.