- 2/3 cup shortening
- 1-3/4 cups sugar, divided
- 4 eggs, separated
- 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup orange juice
- 1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
- 1-1/4 cups sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup light corn syrup
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 egg white
- 1/2 cup miniature marshmallows (about 50)
- 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Assorted M&M's
- 1 piece red shoestring licorice, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
- Chocolate sprinkles
- About 9 vanilla wafers
- 2 cups sweetened shredded coconut, toasted
- Let eggs stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. In a large bowl, cream shortening and 1-1/2 cups sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg yolk until well blended. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with orange juice, beating well after each addition.
- In a small bowl and with clean beaters, beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add the remaining sugar 1 tablespoon at a time on high until stiff peaks form. Gradually fold into batter with coconut.
- Fill paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Bake at 350° for 15 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
- For frosting, in a heavy saucepan, combine the sugar, water, corn syrup, egg white and salt. With a portable mixer, beat on low speed for 1 minute. Continue beating on low over low heat until frosting reaches 160°, about 12-18 minutes. Pour into the bowl of a heavy-duty stand mixer; add marshmallow and vanilla. Beat on high until stiff peaks form, about 5 minutes. Frost cupcakes.
- Arrange M&M's for eyes and nose, licorice for mouth and sprinkles for whiskers. For ears, cut wafers into quarters with a serrated knife; place two on each cupcake, rounded side down. Sprinkle with coconut. Refrigerate until serving. Yield: about 1-1/2 dozen.
Originally published as Kitty Cat Cupcakes in Country Woman May/June 2001, p30
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