Create a sweet
with tips and tricks
from the undisputed
king & queen of
To create your own
tree, like the one on
our cover, go to
60_tasteofhome.com DECEMBER / JANUARY 09
Here at Taste of Home, the sight of abundant baked goods is common-
place. Recently, however, we watched simple cupcakes transform into a
winter wonderland, the likes of which we’ve never seen. Best-selling au-
thors of the book Hello, Cupcake!, Karen Tack & Alan Richardson, spent
a few days with us creating four one-of-a-kind beauties that you can make
at home—no special tools or talents required. Just bake your favorite cup-
cakes, have your favorite vanilla icing on hand and HAVE FUN!
FOR SNOWMEN, FOR SNOWFLAKES,
YOU WILL NEED: YOU WILL NEED:
Coarse sugar Clear decorator
Pencil, paper, scissors
Semisweet chocolate and waxed paper
chips and miniature semi-
sweet chocolate chips White candy coating
Orange candy slices Blue decorator sugar
and edible glitter
Additional vanilla frosting
Blue food coloring, pearl
dragees, blue jumbo
sprinkles and edible glit-
TO MAKE Place decorator sugar in a
SNOWMEN: shallow bowl; roll top edge
Dip the top of each cup- of each cupcake in sugar
cake in coarse sugar; gent- orange slice to form the to form a decorative rim.
ly shake off excess sugar. nose. Set aside.
For stovepipe hats, use a Stick brim of hat, With a pencil and paper,
GET THE serrated knife to cut two rounded side up, into top draw assorted snowflake
Stop by shoptaste narrow strips from oppo- of cupcake; insert hat designs. Melt candy coat-
order the book site sides of each choco- crown into the top edge. ing in a microwave-safe
filled with more late wafer (above right). Secure with additional bowl; stir until smooth. Add kle with blue sugar and
simple, fun and
eye-catching designs Large center piece will vanilla frosting. Color candy coating to a small re- edible glitter (above).
form crown of hat; one frosting if desired; add a sealable plastic bag; cut a Refrigerate until set.
strip will form the brim. decorative hat ribbon, small hole in the corner. Gently lift candy flakes
Add chips and mini chips dragees and sprinkles as Place waxed paper over the from waxed paper; arrange
to form eyes and mouth. desired. Sprinkle cupcakes drawings and pipe candy on cupcakes. Sprinkle with
Cut a small piece of with glitter if desired. coating over designs. Sprin- additional edible glitter.
DECEMBER / JANUARY 09 tasteofhome.com_61
FOR STARS, KAREN’S TIP:
YOU WILL NEED:
Clear decorating sugar and then roll them
Miniature silver dragees, in sugar one at a
optional time. The sugar
will adhere better
Blue, clear and/or white
hard candies to freshly iced
Additional vanilla frosting
Blue decorator sugar
FOR POINSETTIAS, TO MAKE STARS:
YOU WILL NEED:
Place decorator sugar in a
Clear decorator sugar small shallow bowl; stir in
miniature dragees if de-
Winterfresh chewing sired. (Dragees are not
gum edible and are for decora-
tive use only.) Roll top
Additional vanilla frosting edge of each cupcake in
sugar to form a decorative
Yellow candy-coated rim. Set aside.
Crush candies in desired
TO MAKE Arrange leaves in a ran- color to yield about 1 cup.
Place in a foil-lined 15-in. x
POINSETTIAS: dom circular pattern on 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan,
spreading candy to about
Place decorator sugar in a top of each cupcake, work- 1/4-in. thickness. Bake at
350° for 3-5 minutes or
shallow bowl; roll top edge ing from the outer leaves until melted. Meanwhile,
coat 6-8 star-shaped
of cupcake in sugar to form in. Press outer leaves into cookie cutters with cook-
a decorative rim. Set aside. top of cupcake; secure with
Remove pan from the
Using clean kitchen scis- additional frosting as oven; press prepared cut-
ters into melted candy
sors or a small sharp knife, needed. Continue adding (below right). Cool. Re-
move cutters just before
cut gum into leaf shapes of leaves and securing with candy is set. (Reheat scraps t.acsotemofhome
in the oven if desired.)
various sizes. Pinch the frosting to form a poinset- CUPCAKE
Add frosting to a small CACHE
base end of each leaf, tia. Gently press sunflower resealable plastic bag; cut For behind-the-scene
a small hole in the corner. photos of Karen and
forming a curved leaf kernels into the center. Pipe frosting around Alan at TOH, more
edges of stars; top with of their tricks and
shape (above). Add frost- decorator sugars and tips, plus recipes for
miniature dragees as de- cupcakes to make
ing to a small resealable sired. Press stars onto top at home, go to
of cupcakes; secure with tasteofhome.com
plastic bag; cut a small hole additional frosting if /plus
in the corner.
On your mark, get set, CUPCAKE!
How do you cupcake? Inspired by this festive feature, TOH will announce a Creative Cupcakes Con-
test next issue. The focus is on the appearance of your fun or fancy cupcake, not the recipe—although
we do want to know what you used to decorate it. Watch for details—including big cash prizes you can
win—in Taste of Home for February/March!
62_tasteofhome.com DECEMBER / JANUARY 09
CELEBRATING THE PEOPLE AROUND THE TASTE OF HOME TABLE
TEXAS SIGN IN, PLEASE
My grandmother started a tradition in our family: an autograph tablecloth. She’d
For 5 years, field editor put out a solid-color tablecloth for guests to sign and date or add a special note.
Joan Hallford has hosted a Children traced their hands. Later, my grandma would embroider the signatures.
lunch and recipe swap for When the tablecloth was filled, she’d put out a new one, but the old ones came
her Texas on-line friends. out often to remind her of dinners shared with family and friends. I used this idea
Read about their recent at my wedding. Instead of a guest book, I had guests sign an ivory tablecloth
get-together on Joan’s blog that I later embroidered in my wedding colors.
(screen name “marinemom”)
at tasteofhome.com/ —Jennifer Barnhart
HOME my mom’s best recipes
with love HER MOM’S GOOD COOKING WAS
THE REWARD AFTER A HARD DAY’S WORK
i grew up in a hardworking farm family with big appetites. good! Hard work, especially at harvesttime, made
When the six of us gathered at the table, we always said Mom’s cooking taste even better. While my two broth-
grace. Other than that, we didn’t talk much…unless we ers helped our dad, Marty, with farm work, my sister and
asked someone to pass the chicken. There were never I helped Mom with canning, freezing and tending our
leftovers, so our only concern was whether or not Mom huge garden. We both learned from Mom in the
made enough for seconds! And we all wanted seconds of kitchen, but I picked up many of my skills in 4-H and at
her wonderful meals. school. Now I cook for my husband, Steve. We have
two grown daughters, Jamie and Kellie.
My mom, Edna Hoffman of Hebron, Indiana, was
raised on a farm, too. I don’t think she ever used a boxed Mom’s been a Taste of Home field editor since the
cake mix or a frozen dinner. She cooked from scratch. premiere issue. Many of her recipes have been show-
And she’s never been afraid to try something new. cased in the magazine, as well as this favorite meal of
mine (at right). I hope you’ll give it a try!
Her meals weren’t extravagant, but boy, were they
By Joann Jensen (with
mom Edna Hoffman)
RECALL YOUR Send at least four recipes and background information to [email protected]
MOM’S BEST? If we feature your mom’s meal, you’ll earn $75
roast chicken chocolate ring cake
with oyster stuffing
cherry gelatin salad potato
biscuit-y bell pepper brown sugar
muffins glazed salmon
curried sweet cinnamon peach kuchen
DECEMBER / JANUARY 09 tasteofhome.com_69
one last bite
holiday 2 Tbsp. olive oil Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven
tortellini soup over medium heat. Add pancetta.
2 oz. pancetta or bacon, finely diced Cook until crisp. Add onion; cook 3-4
PREP: 15 MIN. COOK: 35 MIN. minutes or until soft. Add garlic; cook
YIELD: 8 SERVINGS (2-1/2 QTS.) 1 medium onion, finely chopped 1 more minute. Add broth and Italian
seasoning; bring to a boil and simmer
Michelle Goggins 3 cloves garlic, minced for 5 minutes.
TASTE OF HOME COOKING SCHOOL 1 can (49-1/2 oz.) chicken broth Meanwhile, cook tortellini according
to package directions; drain. Add
“Hearty and full of flavor, this Italian- 2 tsp. Italian seasoning cooked tortellini to soup mixture. Stir
style soup freezes well if you want to in tomatoes and simmer 5 minutes.
make it ahead or have leftovers to save 1 package (9 oz.) cheese tortellini Add spinach and cook just until
for another day.” wilted. Season with salt and pepper.
1 can (28 oz.) crushed tomatoes Garnish with cheese.
8 oz. fresh spinach, rinsed,
stemmed and chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup freshly shredded
Visit our Recipe
to find thousands of
delicious recipes to
fit any mood.