Today I have something extra fun to share with you. This past weekend I taught a class to some local handmade business owners about 'Blogging with your Handmade Business.' At the end of the class I shared something quick and fun...how to make cakes in a jar. Which is really easy and made a fun little activity for the group of ladies attending the class. At least I thought so. To make cupcakes in a jar all you need to do is pre-bake your cupcakes (using whatever recipe you use). Buy some small wide-mouth kerr canning jars from your local grocery store. Make sure they are the SMALL ones other-wise your cupcakes will look a little lost in there. When you go to make your cakes in the jar simply un-wrap one or two cupcakes and slice them in half horizontally (or hamburger like...as I learned in elementary school). Slide one layer down in the bottom of the jar and start filling the jar up with layers of frosting, fillings and sauces as you wish. Also, make sure you at least add in another layer or two of cupcake in there. (wink) Unless you just like to consume mounds of frosting. Then go for it. Okay, so you got that? Easy right? So here are three recipes (using regular cake mix and doctoring them up). So here we go.
First up. I like to call this concoction Apple Cheesecake Cupcakes (in a jar) or not. What I did was whip up a butter-cake cake mix and bake my cupcakes. You can make one from scratch if you wish. I on the other -hand had to make a lot a lot of cupcakes so I stuck to a cake mix and put more time into making from scratch fillings and frostings. For this cupcake I made a cream cheese frosting.
Cream Cheese Frosting:
1 package of cream cheese
two tablespoons of butter
2-3 cups of powdered sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla
Cream your cream cheese and butter until smooth, slowly add in your powdered sugar (I used 1/2 cup part additions) after about 1 cup addition I added in my vanilla. Add the rest of your powdered sugar until you reach desired consistency. This recipe can be easily doubled if you wish.
I also topped off my cupcakes as well as making a filling to use in the jar cakes with an Apple Pie Filling.
Apple Pie Filling:
6 small apples (peeled and finely chopped) - I used a food processor to finely chop
4 tablespoons of sugar
3 tablespoons of melted butter
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
Combine all ingredients, mix thoroughly and place in a greased baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes or until apples are soft but not mushy. Let your mixture cool completely before using.
For the cupcakes I simply frosted with my cream cheese frosting and one large scoop of apple pie filling on top. For the jar cakes I alternated each layer, cake, frosting and filling (repeat). Easy.
Next up...Salted Caramel Pumpkin Cheesecake Cakes. I made two different kinds of cakes to use (in the picture I used the butter-cake cakes). The other cake I used (not pictured) was a spice cake boxed cake mix that I made as directed eliminating two tablespoons of oil and one egg but adding 1/2 a can of Libby's pumpkin to the mix. Bake as directed. This is a easy way to make a pumpkin spice cake. I layered this jar cake with pumpkin cheesecake frosting and salted caramel sauce. Here's how you make both:
Pumpkin Cheesecake Frosting:
Using the same cream cheese frosting recipe above (see Apple Cheesecake Cupcakes) I blended in 2 slices of pumpkin pie (the filling only). I simply used a fresh baked pumpkin pie from our local grocery store and scraped out the filling from two slices of pumpkin pie. This can easily be doubled using the recipe above. Make sure you blend until smooth so the pumpkin pie is mixed evenly. So easy right?
Salted Caramel Sauce:
2 cups of sugar
1 tablespoon of water
5 tablespoons of butter
1 cup of heavy cream
1 teaspoon of course sea salt
Place your water and sugar in a large metal pan and heat until boiling. Be sure to mix and stir until your mixture starts to boil. Once it starts boiling don't stir it anymore. Let it boil until the mixture becomes a rich deep amber color. If you see crystals forming on top slightly stir until crystals are dissolved but try not to disturb your boil as much as possible. Once you've reached your desired color add your butter until melted. Once the butter is melted remove your pan from the heat immediately. Count to five and then slowly whisk in your heavy cream. Lastly add your salt and stir until mixed. Let your caramel cool completely before using with your cakes.
Layer your cakes as you wish!
Salted Caramel Buttercream:
2 sticks of softened butter
4-5 cups of powdered sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla
2 tablespoons of milk
3/4 cup of salted caramel (see recipe from Salted Caramel Pumpkin Cheesecake up above)
Cream your butter and vanilla. Slowly add powdered sugar and mix until smooth. Add your milk until the frosting is light and fluffy. Lastly mix in your COOLED salted caramel sauce. Be sure that it's cooled completely or else it will melt your frosting. Add additional powdered sugar if needed.
We layered these cakes with extra salted caramel sauce along with the salted caramel butter-cream and chocolate cake.
I know that's probably a lot to take in but now you have three fun fall and holiday recipes to try. I like making cakes in a jar because they store easily and are lovely gifts to give. Hey, I even made a little party out of it. Ideas ideas right?
Tomorrow I'm going to share some fun tips about 'Blogging with your handmade business' right here on the blog. Just a little something from the class I taught. Can't wait.