Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Starlight Mint Cake

I am ridiculously excited to start my holiday baking this year. Every time I get online, my baking list gets longer and longer. Nothing screams Christmas as much as peppermint so I'm starting this year off with Kraft's Starlight Mint Cake. I'm not a huge fan of peppermint, but Eric's madly in love with it. However, satisfying his sweet tooth is not why I decided to make this. To decorate the cake you get to melt starlight mints. That was just too cool to pass up. As always, I've changed a few things from Kraft's recipe. 

I made two one layered cakes because I was giving one to a friend (Hi Christian!). The recipe, however, is for a two layer cake.

1 white cake mix
the ingredients called for to make the cake mix (vegetable oil, water, eggs)
1 cup water
1 3-ounce package cherry-flavored gelatin
15  starlight mints, divided
3/4 cup white chocolate chips
2 tablespoons sour cream
2-3 drops red food coloring
2 cups cool whip, thawed
1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract

Prepare cake mix according to package direction and divide batter between two 9-inch round cake pans. Bake according to directions then allow to cool for fifteen to twenty minutes. In the meantime, boil one cup water, remove from heat, add gelatin, and stir until all the gelatin is dissolved. Once the cakes have cooled, stick the cake with a large fork at 1/2 an inch intervals. Pour the gelatin mix over both cakes. Refrigerate the cakes for at least three hours. 

These have about 1.5 inch diameter.
While waiting for the cakes to set, make your starlight decorations. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with wax paper then spray them with cooking spray. Unwrap six mints and place them on the baking sheet, about four inches apart. Bake them for about 5 to 7 minutes or until they have of diameter of about 1 1/2 inches. You can make them even bigger as I did by accident: 

Larger melted mints in the center.

But the mints will bubble at the edges, distorting the design. Allow the melted candies to cool for 5 to 10 minutes. After a number of broken mints, I found it's easier to peel the wax paper away from the candy than to use a metal spatula to peel the candy from the wax paper. Repeat with the rest of the mints. 

To make the cake filling, melt the white chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl in the microwave. To avoid burning the chocolate, only put it in the microwave for 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until the chocolate is completely melted. Stir in sour cream and food coloring. Kraft added crushed mints to the filling. I left these out because I don't like crunchy things in my cake. To remove cakes from pans, dip the bottom of the pan in hot water for 10 to 20 seconds. Place one cake on a plate and spread the white chocolate mixture on top of it. Stack second layer on top.

In a bowl, fold the peppermint extract into the cool whip then frost the cake with the cool whip. Decorate the cake with the melted mints.

One for Eric, one for Christian.


2011 Christmas Baking List: 
Starlight Mint Cake
Chocolate Truffles
Sea Salt Caramels
Rocky Road Chocolate Log
Candied Citrus Peels
Easy Rum Balls
Homemade Marshmallows
Christmas Kiss Cookies
Tea Cookies

Other Holiday Cooking Ideas:
Snowflake Tortillas
Gingerbread House Decoration Ideas
Christmas Peep S'mores 

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