We’re home from Las Vegas so it’s time for more holiday recipe catch-up. Next up on the list: homemade whoopie pies!
We spent the last hours of 2012 at a New Year’s Eve Extravaganza and Celebrity-Themed Potluck hosted by Kristen from Swig O Sunshine. The rules of the potluck were simple: bring a dish with a celebrity-named twist. Matt and I were determined to come up with a fun contribution and, after weeks of bouncing around ideas we chose Whoopi Goldberg Pies with Leonardo diCappucino Filling. (We previously wanted to make Twice-Baked Channing Taters but the logistics of keeping cheesy ‘taters warm until midnight ultimately pushed us in the dessert direction instead!) Other cleverly-named treats at the party included Guacy Balboa guacamole, Honey Brie-Brie baked brie, Brad Pittzelle cookies (with and without Jennifer Anise-ton!), Bernie Mac and Cheese, and several Kevin Bacon-themed goodies.
This was our first attempt at making whoopie pies but, thanks to the classic recipes in this whoopie-filled cookbook they turned out great! We followed the recipe exactly (right down to using vegetable shortening instead of butter in the filling) and then we added the necessary diCappucino flair with some powered instant cappucino. The instant cappucino didn’t have a super strong flavor so if we were going to make the coffee-flavored filling again we might try instant espresso instead for a little more kick.
Whoopi Goldberg Pies with Leonardo diCappucino Filling (from Whoopie Pies)
Ingredients for the Classic Chocolate Whoopie Pie…
1 2/3 cups All-Purpose Flour
2/3 cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1 1/2 teaspoons Baking Soda
1/2 teaspoon Salt
4 tablespoons Unsalted Butter, at room temperature
4 tablespoons Vegetable Shortening
1 cup packed Dark Brown Sugar (we used Dark Muscovado Sugar)
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1 cup Milk
Ingredients for the Classic Marshmallow Filling…
1 1/2 cup Marshmallow Fluff
1 1/4 cup Vegetable Shortening
1 cup Confectioner’s Sugar
1 tablespoon Vanilla Extract (to turn this into “diCappuncino” filling, substitute in 1 tablespoon Instant Espresso that’s been dissolved into 1 tablespoon warm water instead of the vanilla)
To make the pies, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. In a stand mixer, combine the butter, shortening, and brown sugar on low speed, then increase the speed to medium and beat until the mixture is smooth and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla and beat for another 2 minutes.
Slowly add the flour mixture and the milk and and mix on low to thoroughly combine. Scrap a spatula down the sides of the bowl to loosen any dry ingredients and then beat until completely combined. Use a spoon to drop batter in 1 or 2 tablespoon increments 2 or 3 inches apart onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. (We used 2-tbsp scoops which resulted in about 26 3.5″ pie halves; go smaller for more but just be consistent since they’ll need to fit together later!) Bake the pies on the center rack of a preheated 375° oven for about 10 minutes for 1 tbsp pies or 12-13 minutes for 2 tbsp pies. Remove from oven and allow to cool on the sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to racks to cool.
To make the filling, beat together the marshmallow fluff and vegetable shortening for approximately 3 minutes. Start on low speed and increase to medium until the mixture is smooth and fluffy. Reduce the speed to low and slowly add the confectioner’s sugar and vanilla (or espresso!) and mix until incorporated. Increase mixer speed to medium and beat for about 3 minutes until the mixture is fluffy.
Once the pies are completely cooled arrange them in pairs with one flat side facing up as shown in the above photo. Place a generous amount of filling to the flat side of the pie by either spooning the filling on or using a pastry bag for a more polished look. Top the filled pies with the other pie halves and enjoy!