Christmas Tree Cupcakes

I made these adorable cupcakes for Christmas dessert in 2011.  Images of Christmas Tree Cupcakes flooded Pinterest last year – I did some research while writing this post and can’t even figure out which image I used for my inspiration there are so many!

Nothing from scratch on this recipe, except for the fondant, I needed such a small amount, decided to make it myself.  I used Betty Crocker’s Super Moist Dark Chocolate Cake Mix for the cupcakes – and a cute Christmas themed cupcake liner from Michael’s. 

Once the cupcakes were cool, I moved onto the decorating phase.  For the frosting – back to my favorite, Betty Crocker’s Whipped Vanilla and simply added Wilton’s Leaf Green Icing Color to get the frosting to the color consistency I wanted. 

To create the “ribbon/leaf” effect while making the trees, I used Wilton’s No. 70 Leaf Decorating Tip.  One lesson I have learned over the past couple of years when decorating cupcakes is to start with your first “mound” of frosting to the middle of the cupcake, then starting on the outside of the cupcake, frost all the way around building on top of that initial drop.  That will help give it the height you are wanting here.

To decorate, I sprinkled Betty Crocker’s Pearls Cupcake Gems around the frosting of the cupcake.  I’m not sure why these are not on Betty’s site, but I couldn’t find them there!  I bought them from my local grocery store.

For the stars, I made the fondant by combining marshmallows, water, and powdered sugar in a microwave safe bowl.  I microwaved on high in 30 second increments, stirring in between until the marshmallows were well combined with the water and powdered sugar. 

Being very careful of the fondant – it will be hot – and wearing latex gloves covered in shortening (to prevent sticking),  I moved to a workspace dusted with powdered sugar to knead in my food coloring – Wilton’s Golden Yellow Icing Color  until combined well and is like a “dough-ey” consistency.  Then, rolled it out and with a small star cookie cutter, cut out the stars.

These were the perfect dessert for Christmas day.  In 2011 we enjoyed dinner at the home of good friends and the eyes of the children (and adults!) when they saw the cupcakes were wide with anticipation!

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