Halloween Cookies & Cream Owl Cupcakes

October 31, 2015

IMG_3534

Happy Halloween! And just look what I’ve got here…h’OWL’oween Cupcakes! Or I guess you could call them OreOwls! Sorry, I couldn’t resist. But really, aren’t these Cookies & Cream Owl Cupcakes adorable!

IMG_3540

Almost too cute to eat…but who am I kidding?!! I love cupcakes. So believe me they only got a very short pass before I gobbled them up! Last Halloween I baked up a batch of Mini Mummy Brownie Bite Cupcakes that were pretty fantastic. Just look at these tiny terrors!

IMG_0006

But back to these little owls… They are so easy to make that you could still get a batch done before this evenings festivities. Or maybe you could make them for Thanksgiving. They definitely have an autumn vibe.

IMG_3535

 

IMG_3537

I give you a recipe for some very moist and chocolatey Cookies & Cream Cupcakes, but if you’re in a rush you could just make a box mix and fold some crushed Oreo cookies into the batter before baking. The chocolate ganache frosting is super easy to make. I dipped the cupcakes rather than actually frosting them. To be honest, the most difficult part of these cupcakes were trying to separate the cookies so that all of the white frosting cream remained on one cookie. Cutting the frosting-less Oreo to make the owl’s tufts was a bit challenging as well, but a few choice words later and Voila! Owl nirvana achieved! Happy Hauntings!

IMG_3530

Halloween Cookies & Cream Owl Cupcakes

  • Servings: 14 -16 cupcakes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

recipe slightly adapted from: Once Upon a Chef (cupcakes) and Arctic Garden Studio (ganache)

Ingredients:

  • 3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, broken into small pieces
  • 1 cups all-purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled-off
  • 1/2 tablespoon instant coffee granules (optional, to enhance chocolate flavor)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup chopped Oreos
  • 28 -32 Oreo cookies for decorating
  • 28 – 32 brown, blue or green plain chocolate M&M’s (I used Mega M&M’s but regular sized are fine)
  • 14 – 16 yellow or orange white chocolate M&M’s (or plain chocolate M&M’s if you prefer)

For the Frosting:

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 5 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1-2 tablespoons corn syrup

Directions:

Prep Work: Count out 28 -32 Oreo cookies. Divide these cookies in half and attempt to keep all of the cream on one of the cookies. Using a small icing spatula helps. If you end up crack a few cookies, don’t despair – you can crumble them even further and use them in the cupcakes. Once you have the cookies successfully separated, cut 14 -16 of the non-icing side Oreos in half to make the owl tufts. 

Preheat oven to 350° F and line two 12-cup muffin tins.

Place the chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl and cook in the microwave in 20-second intervals, stirring in between, until about 3/4 of the way melted. Stir, allowing the residual heat in the bowl to melt the remaining chocolate completely. (If necessary, place the chocolate back in microwave for a few seconds.) Set aside to cool.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, instant coffee (if using), baking soda and salt until well combined.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugars until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Add the eggs one at a time, scraping the bowl and beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla and lukewarm chocolate.

Add the dry ingredients in three separate additions, alternating with the buttermilk. Fold in the crushed Oreo cookies.

Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups until about 3/4 full (I think it’s easiest to use an ice cream scooper with a wire scraper). Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the tops look dry and a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Cool in the pan for about 15 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.

For the frosting: Heat heavy cream and chocolate over medium low heat stirring constantly until chocolate has melted. Stir in corn syrup. Let ganache cool for about 10 minutes before assembling cupcakes.

Cupcake Assembly:

First complete the owl “ore-eyes” (the Oreo halves with the icing). Place brown, green or blue M&M’s into the inner edge of the white part of each owl eye. Press down gently (if you push too hard you will crack the cookie) to stick M&M to the cream filling. Or if it seems like it doesn’t want to stick, a little bit of ganache to the bottom of the M&M to “glue” it in place.

Now for the cupcakes. Dip each cupcake in the ganache so that the top is frosted. Place eyes just slightly below the center of the cupcake, this will make sure you have enough room for the tufts. Then place the tufts above the eyes. Add a sideways orange or yellow M&M for the nose. Repeat with each cupcake until complete.

Enjoy!

*These cupcakes are best on the day that they are made as far as looks go. The Oreo tufts do get moist on the following day and tend to break off easily if you are trying to transport cupcakes.

Halloween Cookies & Cream Owl Cupcakes brought to you by: Runcible Eats. (www.leaandjay.com)

 

 

Advertisements

Oreo Key Lime Pie

June 18, 2012

All those Meyer Lemon dishes that I just did recently got me thinking about summer-y citrus desserts. Key Lime Pie quickly came to mind. Key Limes are found throughout the Florida Keys. They are smaller than the usual Persian Limes you find in the grocery store. Their pale yellow hued juice is also more tart and they are more aromatic than other limes. I picked up a bag of them last week and decided to whip up a pie.

Key Lime Pies usually have a graham cracker crust, which I was all ready to do. But then I spied that bag of Oreo Cookies just staring right back at me. I couldn’t resist them and ended up going with a Oreo Cookie Crust instead of the traditional graham cracker. The crust came together very easily, just popped those cookies in the old food processor, gave them a few whirrs, added some melted butter, pressed the butter/crumb mixture into the pie plate and baked for 10 minutes. That sorted, I turned to making the filling. Let me say right now, I am proud that I actually did take the time to juice fresh key limes for this pie. I feel it gave me more of the authentic key lime pie making experience (though come to think of it,  I didn’t crush the cookies by hand and didn’t feel that gave me less of an authentic cookie pie crust making experience. Hmmm…) That being said, I don’t know if I would do it this way again. I had to juice like 18 of those little guys to get 1/2 cup of juice. I hear they sell bottled Key Lime Juice. Awesome! Sounds like a great time saver to me for next time. However, if you are looking to do an act of penance, perhaps juicing key limes would be just the thing for it. Other than the juice issue, the filling comes together very easily as well. You bake the pie for 15-20 minutes and then refrigerate it for at least one hour before you wish to serve it.

We were quite pleased with this pie. The crunchy, sweet Oreo Cookie Crust went along wonderfully with the creamy sweet and tart lime filling. On a hot, humid summer day, as so many of them are around these parts, there is nothing more refreshing than a thick slice of chilled Key Lime Pie topped with freshly whipped cream.

Oreo Key Lime Pie

yield: 8 slices

Ingredients:

  • 32 Oreo cookies, crumbled
  • 7 Tablespoons Butter
  • 14 ounces Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 1/2 Cup freshly squeezed Key Lime Juice

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375°  F.

Mix Oreo cookie crumbs and butter until well blended. Press mixture into an 8-inch pie dish. Bake crust for 10 minutes, rotating half way through baking. Remove from oven and place on cooling rack. Allow to cool completely.

Combine the egg yolks, sweetened condensed milk and lime juice. Mix well.  Pour  mixture into cooled Oreo cookie shell.

Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes. Remove to cooling rack. Allow to cool. Refrigerate for at least one hour or overnight before serving.

Serve with freshly whipped cream.

Enjoy!


Oreo Stuffed Brownie Bits for Bitly’s Three Year Birthday Party

July 14, 2011

Last Thursday, July 7th, Bitly turned three years old! Jay and I travelled up to New York to the Betaworks office to celebrate with the Bitly team and to further mark the event, I baked a whole lot of Oreo Stuffed Brownie Bits. Over 100 of those little devils! Oh, and that is “Bits” not “bites”. Get it….bits for Bitly? Anyway…I’m sure by now many of you are wondering “What in the world is Bitly?” Bitly is a URL shortener which allows its users to not only shorten their long URL’s, which is very important in these days of 140 character tweets, but also aids them in sharing and tracking their links. Furthermore, it allows them to view complete, real-time traffic and analytics data as well. You may have noticed “Bit.ly” if you use Twitter, but Bitly also powers more than 10,000 custom short URL’s. So if you see a short URL, Bitly is most likely behind it.

Bitly Icon

My husband is the Architect for Bitly, and wrote the first rev of the product three years ago, hence our inclusion in the festivities, which were held at Madam Geneva’s on Bowery and Bleeker. Madam Geneva, which was named for the 18th Century English slang for Gin, is a hip bar and lounge with a speak-easy vibe located adjacent to the Double Crown restaurant.

Bitly crowd at Madam Geneva

They serve a tasty specialty cocktail which consists of your choice of several different jams or preserves served over ice with gin or vodka. Yummy!

Jammy Cocktail's at the Madam's

We had a great time and I’m delighted to say folks seemed to enjoy my Oreo Stuffed Brownie Bits. I think they were a perfect treat for a Bitly-centric party, compact – like their URL’s – but packing a powerful punch! The mini Oreo cookies do get a bit softer during baking, but still provides a nice crunchy contrast to the gooey, fudgy brownie surrounding it. Not everyone in the office knew that a mini Oreo was secreted away in the middle of those little morsels, so it was quite amusing to occasionally hear after someone’s first bite, “Oh my God…there’s a freakin Oreo in here!”

I adapted this recipe from an Oreo-Stuffed Brownie recipe on Sing For Your Supper. They made regular sized brownies with their favourite King Arthur Flour Brownie recipe (now a favourite of mine as well) and stuffed them with full-sized double stuff Oreo’s. As mentioned, I was looking for a smaller, easily portable treat, so I opted to make individual, mini cupcake -like treats.

Batter-Topped Oreo-Stuffed Brownie Bits and those awaiting their top layer of batter before baking

However, if you’d rather super-size your brownies, that is definitely an option. Just use full sized Oreos, full sized chocolate chips, a 9×13 pan and bake them for about 35-40 minutes. No matter what the size, these guys are addictive! Make some today!

Oreo Stuffed Brownie Bits

Recipe adapted from Sing For Your Supper

Makes 48 oreo stuffed brownie bits

Ingredients:

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
2 1/4 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 1/4 cups cocoa powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon espresso powder, optional
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
1 cup mini chocolate chips
1 package mini oreo cookies

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a mini muffin pan with mini cupcake liners or lightly grease each well of the pan.

In a medium-sized microwave-safe bowl, or in a saucepan set over low heat, melt the butter, then add the sugar and stir to combine. Return the mixture to the heat (or microwave) briefly, just until it’s hot, but not bubbling; it’ll become shiny looking as you stir it. Heating the mixture a second time will dissolve more of the sugar, which will yield a shiny top crust on your brownies.

While the sugar heats a second time, beat the eggs, cocoa, salt, baking powder, espresso powder, and vanilla until smooth. Add the hot butter/sugar mixture, stirring until smooth.

Add the flour and chips, again stirring until smooth.

Using a small cookie scoop, fill the scoop halfway with the brownie batter. Place batter in the bottom of each muffin well. Place one mini Oreo cookie on top of the batter in each of the muffin wells. Top each Oreo with another one half cookie scoop of batter. Bake for about 18 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool the brownie bits for at least 10 minutes before serving.

Enjoy!


Oreo Truffles

May 7, 2011

Who doesn’t love Oreo Cookies? I don’t know a single soul. Indeed  if I did know someone who claimed they didn’t, I’d certainly be a little suspicious of them. Oreo cookies are great comfort food which likely evoke happy childhood memories (or maybe memories more recent – say, last night perhaps) of dunking them in an ice-cold glass of milk.

So I was sure I couldn’t go wrong with this recipe for Oreo Truffles. Not that I thought I should “guild the lily” by any means, but adding some cream cheese and a enfolding the whole thing in a blanket of delectable chocolate – I couldn’t resist!

Nor should you. Really. These Truffles are very easy to make. Toss the cookies into the food processor. Give it a whirr.

Oreo crumbles

Add the cream cheese. Pulse until blended. Roll the mixture into balls.

Truffle filling - waiting to chill

Chill and then dip into chocolate. The only bit of the whole process that requires some patience is the dipping the truffles into the chocolate bit. I used prepackaged melting chocolate by Baker’s. You just pop the package in the microwave until melted and then start dipping away. I guess the waiting for them to chill in the fridge before devouring them all was a bit difficult as well.

Everyone will think you slaved in the kitchen for hours to create these treats. Believe me,  folks will go absolutely wild for them. Soooooo delicious!

Oreo Truffles

Recipe from Someone Left the Cake Out in the Rain

Makes 36 Oreo Truffles

Ingredients:
1 package (16.6 oz) Oreo cookies – I used the Double Stuff variety 🙂
1 (8 oz) package cream cheese, softened
2 -(7 oz.) containers Baker’s Dipping Chocolate

Directions:

In the bowl of a food processor, pulse the Oreo cookies until they are coarsely chopped.  Add cream cheese and continue to pulse until they are well-combined.

Roll into 1-inch balls and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.

Refrigerate until firm, 4 hours, or optimally, overnight.

Melt chocolate according to package.  Dip balls into chocolate and place on waxed paper lined trays to harden.

Sprinkle with any sort of decoration you prefer before the chocolate begins to set up.

Chill and serve cold.



%d bloggers like this: