Oh My! Whoopie Pie!

I go the library a lot. I don’t usually browse, but order my books online then retrieve them at the library. The wonderful folks at the library are kind enough to cull and shelve the books for me, but have also placed a large selection of cookbooks, my personal favorite, next to the reserved pick-up area. The Whoopie Pie Book caught my eye on such a pick-up day. I snagged it and brought it home. The cover is lovely and the information inside is even better! The books author, Claire Ptak, makes the recipes straightforward and easy to follow, though the icing creation is a bit intense, it’s not difficult and well worth the effort..

There are 60 recipes for the popular cake sandwiches, which seem to have become as ubiquitous as the cupcake. Like the cupcakes, I’ve eaten a few whoopie pies, and found many of them lacking. While I appreciate the need to make them quickly, using a boxed cake mix (or worse, canned icing, which I can barely force past my lips these days) does these tender little cakes a disservice. Once I narrowed in on which recipe I wanted to try first, I quickly knew this was THE way to make these wonderful little cakes.

My baby sister had a birthday coming, so I whipped up a batch in her honor. I chose the Chocolate Chip Whoopie Pies with Chocolate Marshmallow filling, which I knew she would like. Conveniently, I had the ingredients for these on hand! Sadly, she never got any of the whoopie pies, we ate them all.

Chocolate Chip Whoopie Pies

Recipes from The Whoopie Pie Book, copyright © Claire Ptak, 2011. Reprinted by permission of the publisher, The Experiment. Available wherever books are sold.

  • 2 c (280g) all purpose flour
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 9 T unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 1/2 c light brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 c buttermilk
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 c dark chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. In a bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Stir in the salt. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugars together until light and fluffy. Add egg and mix well. Combine buttermilk and vanilla in measuring cup and add this to the mixture, beating until combined. Slowly add the dry ingredients in two batches until just incorporated. Stir in the chocolate chips. Refrigerate for thirty minutes. Try to avoid stuffing all the batter straight into your face.
  3. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. I use a Silpat.
  4. Using a small scoop (or two teaspoons) drop 18 large or 48 small scoops of batter about two inches apart onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake in the middle of the oven for 10-12 minutes (large) or 8-10 minutes (small), until the cakes are left with a slight indent when touched with a finger. Do not over bake.
  5. Remove to a wire rack and cool completely before frosting.

Chocolate Marshmallow Filling

  • 4 oz dark chocolate, broken into small pieces
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 3/4 c sugar
  • 2 T light corn syrup
  • pinch salt
  • 1 t vanilla extract
Directions:
  1. Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a tan of simmering water. Once the chocolate has melted, take the bowl off and let the chocolate cool.
  2. Return the pan of water to a boil. Place remaining ingredients into the stainless steel bowl of  a standing mixer, then place the bowl over the boiling water. Whisk continuously by hand until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is frothy and slightly opaque (10-15 minutes).
  3. Remove the bowl from the heat and transfer to mixer. Whip using a whisk attachment on high speed until it is white and holds its shape. Fold in the  melted chocolate. Ice the cooled whoopie pies immediately.

Don’t be daunted by the icing preparation. I got Mr. Bundt to whip and he felt important. He is also taller and has more muscles than me, so it gave me the opportunity to stroke his ego a bit. Then I fed him these. Now he thinks I’m the best thing ever. Win/win I’d say.

The icing recipe makes plenty, so stuff your pies as full of icing as you can stand. I like just enough to wet them down a little, but you can do yours your way! These would be lots of fun to assemble with kids. Let them fill the sandwiches, then you could roll the edges in sprinkles, chopped nuts, tiny chocolate chips, whatever you like. If you’re too chicken to make the icing, how about filling them with a scoop of ice cream?

Can’t get enough whoopie pies? Check out these recipes!

The Pioneer Woman’s Oatmeal Whoopie Pies

Chocolate Whoopie Pies by bakerella

Advertisements

Meal Planning Part Deux: Five Meals You Can Make This Week

Wordy title, huh? So how’s that meal planning going? Remember, from my post here? Hopefully you’re making a few more meals each week than you were before. I found these WAY prettier meal planners I wanted to share with you, in case you, like me, are motivated by pretty sheets of paper MORE than you are motivated by, well, less pretty ones.

Check these out!

This one’s from Jen Allyson at The Project Girl. Pop over to her site and snag yourself a copy. There are two versions. I love them both. Tell her I sent you.

The Project GIrl Meal Planner

This one is from Ali Edwards. Her blog is awesome and you can head over there to pick it up! This would be great in a binder if you want to keep your recipes, coupons, and meal plans together.

Ali Edwards WeeklyDinner Menu

Okay, now that you’ve got your meal planners and your fav-O-rite pen in hand, here are five easy meals you can make next week and all the stuff you need to make them.

Creamy Chicken Taquitos

Chicken Taquitos

Photo courtesy of Annie's Eats

We’ve been chowing on these taquitos from Annie’s Eats A LOT lately. They are SOOOO good! Make some extras and pop them in a bag in the freezer. So quick and easy for lunch!

Get the recipe here. We’ve substituted pork for chicken, and I use low fat cream cheese and shredded cheese. We also use whole wheat tortillas, but you can pick your favorite.

Calzones

Calzones

Photo courtesy Simply Scratch

So easy! Grab some prepared dough and your favorite toppings from the store (if you want to make your own dough, try this recipe from Simply Scratch) And dinner’s ready pronto!

Divide dough into four portions. Roll out into four circles. Spoon one tablespoon of marinara on one half of the rolled out dough. Top with your favorite toppings, keep them to one side.

If you’re using sausage or hamburger, cook it first, and drain off any grease. You don’t want that in your calzone. If you don’t like a strong onion taste you can brown those as well.

Make sure the topping stay about 1/2 in. away from the edge of the calzone. Fold the un-topped half of the dough over the toppings and roll and pinch the two edges together to seal. Use a knife to crimp the edge if you like. Cut a small slit in the top of your calzone so steam can escape. Heat the oven to 450 degrees, dust a baking sheet with cornmeal. Place your calzones on the baking sheet and brush with a beaten egg. Bake 12-14 minutes until golden brown.

Slow-cooker Turkey Chili

Slow Cooker Turkey Chili

Photo courtesy of http://www.myrecipes.com

I know this recipe has a lot of ingredients, but don’t sweat it. You do a little chopping (or buy pre-chopped veggies if you have to) and dump all the stuff in the crock pot. That’s it. And it’s chock full of veggies so you can serve it up with a little cornbread and have a great, healthy meal for your family. Plus leftovers!

Barbecue Chicken Sliders

BBQ Chicken Sliders

Photo: John Autry; Styling: Leigh Ann Ross

These are SOOO good! And kids love tiny sandwiches. Let’s be honest, so do grown-ups. Put a little slaw on the side and you have a meal! Get the recipe here.

And finally . . . drumroll please!

Leftover Soup

Whaaaat?? Seriously, leftover soup. It’s time to use up all the bits of stuff that you haven’t used up in your meals this week. Check out this post for help. Start by sautéing anything crispy (celery, onion, carrots) in some butter or a teaspoon or two of vegetable or olive oil. Add some broth (chicken, beef, veggie, whatev) or canned tomatoes (the diced in juice kind, preferably) and bring to a simmer. Add your protein (meat or beans, or both!). Let it simmer for a bit. When things have softened up (15-20 minutes) drop in anything delicate like frozen veggies, greens, or mushrooms. Continue cooking for a few minutes. Taste for seasoning as you go. A little salt and pepper go a looooong way. Serve up with a nice piece of crusty bread (or leftover cornbread, if you made that with the chili) and enjoy!

So there you go! Enjoy an easy week on me!

Download and print the meal planner 5 Easy Meals Meal Planner Printable.

5 Easy Meals Meal Planner

What meal do you think you might try? Is there a type of meal you’d like to see more of? Have you been using your meal planner?