the appetizer:

Coming Home: A Seasonal Guide to Creating Family Traditions by Rosanna Bowles includes recipes like Paglia e Fieno (Straw and Hay Pasta); Pumpkin and Cat Cupcakes; Erbazzone (Spinach and Cheese Tart); and Thanksgiving Roasted Vegetables.


Pumpkin and Cat Cupcakes


Pumpkin and Cat

Makes 24 cupcakes


I am a busy working mother, and I don't always have time to make my own cupcakes from scratch. Dr. Oetker's organic cake mixes (from Germany) are not only quick and easy to use, but tasty and healthful as well, especially if you use organic eggs and milk. You can find Dr. Oetker's online or at your local organic food store. I use both the vanilla and chocolate mixes.

  • Cupcakes made from 1 box each Dr. Oetker Organics vanilla
         and chocolate cake mixes, cooled completely
  • 1 recipe Rosanna's Quick Cupcake Frosting (below)
  • Orange fruit leather
  • Grape fruit leather
  • Panda soft licorice whips
  • White chocolate chips

For pumpkin faces: Frost the cupcakes with plain white frosting. Cut the orange fruit leather into triangles for eyes and half-moon shapes for mouths. Cut a small square out of the mouth piece for the tooth of the pumpkin.

For cat faces: Frost the cupcakes. Cut each licorice whip into 3 lengths; they will serve as the eyes (see the photo). For the nose, place a white chocolate chip upside down. Cut more licorice whips into 2-inch skinny strips and place 2 on each side of the nose for whiskers and 1 underneath for a sad mouth.


Rosanna's Quick Cupcake Frosting

Makes 2 cups; enough to frost 22 to 24 cupcakes.

  • 4 tablespoons (60 g) unsalted butter
  • 2 cups (226 g) confectioners' sugar
  • 3 tablespoons (40 ml) heavy cream
  • 4 tablespoons (60 ml) whole milk, or more if necessary
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 ml) vanilla extract
  • Dash of salt
  • 1 or 2 drops food coloring or 1 cup (182.4 g) semi-sweet
         chocolate chips, melted (optional)

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter until soft and creamy. Add the confectioners' sugar and mix well, then add the cream and beat until smooth. Slowly add the milk, vanilla, and salt, mixing to combine; if the frosting is too thick to spread, add more milk. To make chocolate frosting, add one cup of melted semisweet chocolate chips to the vanilla frosting.

  • from:
    Coming Home
  • by Rosanna Bowles
  • Photographs by John Granen
  • Stewart, Tabori & Chang 2010
  • Hardcover with jacket; 200 color photographs; $27.50
  • ISBN-10: 158479836X
  • ISBN-13: 9781584798361
  • Recipe reprinted by permission.

Buy Coming Home


Coming Home


This page created October 2010

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