Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Makin' Whoopie!

Have you made whoopie pies before? Surely you have at least eaten them....especially if you live in New England. Though Mainers and folks from Pennsylvania both argue that whoopie pies originated there, the general consensus is that it is a recipe from Amish country. According to tradition, Amish women would bake these to pack along with their husbands for lunch. When the hungry farmers discovered the treat in their lunch basket they would shout....all together now...."Whoopie!!"

Wherever their origination, these fluffy chocolate cakes, typically filled with vanilla cream frosting are something to behold and very worthy of their name. There are a couple of cookbooks out now that feature all different flavors of them, but I went with the traditional kind, and adapted the recipe from this one. They are tooth-achingly sweet, but in a good way, and a little goes a long way. I guarantee that with one bite of these, you'll be shouting, "Whoopie!" too!

Whoopie Pies

adapted from Epicurious

I measured out the cake dough using my regular ice cream scoop, but mini versions would be great too. Just make sure to adjust down the baking time by a few minutes.

Prep time: 30 minutes
Total time: 1 hour
Yield: about 8 desserts


For cakes
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup good quality cocoa powder
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup well-shaken buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 large egg

For filling
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4-1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
2 cups marshmallow cream such as Marshmallow Fluff (you will need 2 jars)
1 teaspoon vanilla


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

2. Mix flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt in a bowl and set aside.

3. In a large bowl, beat butter with sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add vanilla and egg and beat until smooth.

4. Mix in the flour and buttermilk, alternating in batches, starting and ending with the flour. Scrape down the sides of the bowl to incorporate all of the flour.

5. Spoon scant 1/4 cup mounds, 3 inches apart, on two greased cookie sheets. You should have 16 cakes. Bake for 11-13 minutes, rotating pans halfway through baking. The cakes are done when a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cakes comes out clean.

6. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack. Fill with frosting.

7. While cakes are baking, you can prepare frosting. Beat butter in a large mixing bowl. Beat in the marshmallow cream, vanilla and powdered sugar and mix until smooth. Add enough powdered sugar so that the frosting isn't runny, but not overly stiff either. Cover with plastic and set aside until cakes are ready to fill.

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