My mom was an, eat a piece of fruit if your hungry kind of mom. Cakes, cookies and pastries were for special occasions. After dinner, a bowl of fruit, platter of nuts and maybe a hunk of cheese would be placed in the middle of the table. We would solve the world’s problems while the coffee brewed. If I wanted a store bought, cream filled delight, I had to eat at a friend’s house. I have still never tasted an actual hostess snowball. But I get the gist. When I found a fabulous vintage cake pan, with rows of hand-size eggs, at a local shop, I couldn’t wait to make cakes. Cakes with creamy filling, robed in sticky marshmallow, and covered with dreamy pastel-painted coconut.
makes approximately 18
Devil’s Food Cake
3 oz bittersweet chocolate chopped
1 1/2 cups hot coffee or hot water or mixture of the two (i use espresso with water)
3 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups cocoa powder
2 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 1/4 tsp kosher salt
3 extra large eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup sour cream + 1/2 cup milk or 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla
Melt bittersweet chocolate in hot water/coffee. Sift dry ingredients together (including sugar). Mix together the chocolate/coffee mixture, milk, sour cream and vanilla. In a mixer beat the eggs with the oil until thickened and doubled in volume (about 3-5 minutes). Alternately add the dry and wet ingredients to the mixer, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Mix until just incorporated. Butter, or spray cake pan and dust with cocoa powder. Fill to 3/4 full and bake in 350 oven until tester comes out clean. Allow to cool completely.
1 cup milk
5 Tbs flour
1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup shortening–room temperature
3/4 cup unsalted butter–room temperature
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
Over low heat, cook milk and flour in a saucepan until it makes a thick paste. Use a whisk to break up lumps. Let cool. In mixer using whisk attachment, beat shortening, butter, sugar, salt and vanilla. Add in cooled flour paste and whip until light and fluffy. Add more sugar if you want a sweeter taste.
3/8 oz (1 1/2 pks) unflavored gelatin
1/4 cup cold water
1 cups granulated sugar
1 large egg whites
Put sugar in a saucepan. Add enough water to make a mixture that looks and feels like wet sand. What is most important is that all sugar has the same amount of moisture. place over low heat. Cook until it becomes a sugar syrup of 235-240 degrees. It should have the consistency of corn syrup. Meanwhile…place room temperature egg white into the bowl of your mixer. Add the salt . Also, prepare gelatin. Place 1/4 cup water in a bowl. Sprinkle the gelatin evenly over the water. Let bloom.
Once the sugar syrup is ready, turn off heat and let sit for a couple of minutes…not too long. Start your mixer on low and get the whites to foamy. Mix the gelatin into the sugar syrup and stir until melted completely. Bring the saucepan over to the mixer and turn it to high. Slowly pour the sugar syrup into the bowl, careful not to hit the whisk attachment. Leave on high and mix until the mixture is warm, but full volume and comes to a peak. While it is still warm, pour over your cake(s)
Do not make your marshmallow until you are ready for it. marshmallow sets up quite fast, if possible get someone to help you, this will help it go both smoothly and quickly.
Simply take about a cup of sweetened flake coconut and place it in a ziploc bag. Drop in 2-3 drops of food color and close the bag. Massage with your hands until all coconut has a bit of color in it. Set aside until you are ready to use. Do not make your marshmallow until you are ready for it. marshmallow sets up quite fast, if possible get someone to help you, this will help it go both smoothly and quickly.
when you are ready, arrange your filled cakes on parchment paper in groupings of what color you will be topping them with
Using a pastry bag with a “fill” tip, squeeze about 2 Tbs of cream into the center of the cake through the large end of the egg. When you are ready, arrange your filled cakes on parchment paper in groupings of what color you will be topping them with. Make your marshmallow topping. While the marshmallow topping is still slightly warm, but is perfectly fluffed, stop whipping. Immediately begin topping your marshmallows, simply by pouring a bit of marshmallow on top. If you are doing this alone, stop after every two or three and generously sprinkle the coconut on top and sides. If you have a helper, allow them to immediately follow you with the coconut. Your marshmallow will set up within 5 or so minutes. Don’t panic, just be aware.
I think these would be just darling wrapped and hidden in the garden for a truly joyous easter egg hunt