I really love Taste of Home magazine.....some of my all-time favorite family recipes have come from one of these well-loved issues over the years. Last month Taste of Home had an entire article on Whoopie Pies, so I decided to try a couple of them. Whoopie Pies are great because they are like miniature hand held cakes with the frosting inside - GENIUS! Wrap them individually and they would be great at a cookout or picnic this summer. And it is almost really summer....as I was making these I looked out the back window to check on my youngest. She was wearing a swimsuit holding her cute little squirming white bunny. I'm hoping that no water was involved, but I was busy baking you know.
I tried the Red Velvet and the Go Bananas recipes, I've included links to the TOH original recipes. They also have recipes for a traditional Chocolate cream filled and a Lemon Gingerbread WP. The Red Velvets turned out beautifully and held their shape really well. The Banana recipe spread a bit more, making a flatter cake - but that just made more room for the peanut butter filling.
If you decide to try one of these recipes, here are some Whoopie Pie lessons I learned:
- Don't make your cakes too big.....the first time I made the pumpkin cakes they were the size of my hand, and took a very long time to bake. Each cake should take about 1Tablespoon of batter. (I use the medium sized Pampered Chef scoop, a little bigger than recommended but pretty perfect).
- Use Parchment Paper. Just lay it over your cookie sheet and scoop the batter on, no non-stick spray or greasing. I pull the parchment off the cookie sheet and onto the counter after the cakes bake to let them cool, then just flip over to fill.
- My attempts only yielded 17 Red Velvets and 13 Banana Peanut Butters. If you want the recipe to stretch a bit, use a smaller scoop (the original recipe says they should make 24).
- One can of Cream Cheese Frosting will fill one recipe of cakes just right if you don't feel like making homemade.
- In the Red Velvet recipe, I substituted 8 Tablespoons of mini-chocolate chips for the 2 ounces chopped. I tend to have chocolate chips on hand more readily than semisweet squares.
- After your cakes are baked let them cool completely and then lay them next to each other in matching "pairs". Spread the frosting on one of each pair but don't put the lid on until you've filled them all. That way you can go back and add any extra frosting.
By the way, here is the scoop on the name......
......so here's to shouting "Whoopie!"