Spaghetti and Meatball Cupcakes

Spaghetti and Meatball Cupcakes
1 Yellow or White Cake Mix (**sale** Pillsbury $1.25)
4 Large eggs (**sale** Large AA 18 ct. $1.89)
Oil called for on cake mix box
1 cup buttermilk
1-2 Tubs White frosting (**sale** Pillsbury $1.39)
Yellow Food Coloring
15 oz. jar low-sugar strawberry jam (better color in low-sugar jam)
1 bar white chocolate (3 oz. or so)
12 – 24 pieces Ferrero Rocher candy
2 zip-lock bags (large, freezer-quality)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a large bowl, combine cake mix, eggs, water and buttermilk. Beat with a hand mixer 2 minutes. Prepare cupcake pan by lining with yellow or white cupcake paper liners. Pour batter into cupcake liners until 2/3 way full. Bake for 15-17 minutes or until done. Remove from oven and completely cool. Tint white frosting a “pasta” color by adding 2-3 drops of yellow food coloring. Spoon frosting into freezer bags, seal and snip a VERY small corner off and push frosting through snipped hole. When cupcakes are cool, drizzle frosting in a random pattern to resemble pasta. Place 1 chocolate candy on each cupcake to look like a meat ball and spoon a little strawberry jam over the meatball to mimic spaghetti sauce. Keep cool until ready to serve.

“Fauxberry” Pie
1/3 cup barbecue sauce
1/4 cup milk (**sale** ShurSaving Milk ½ gallon $1.59)
1 tablespoon dark, molasses
1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1 small onion, finely chopped (**sale** Sweet Onions $0.89/lb.)
1 tablespoon canola oil (**sale** 48 oz. Crisco Oil $3.29)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon celery salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2/3 cup bread crumbs
1 1/4 pounds lean ground beef
1 egg, lightly beaten (Large AA 18 ct. $1.89)
2 pounds baking potatoes, peeled and cubed (**sale** 5 lb. bag $1.50)
1/4 cup canned sliced beets (not pickled)
1/4 cup (or more) warm milk (**sale** ShurSaving Milk ½ gallon $1.59)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces (Challenge Butter $2.69/lb.)

Heat the oven to 350°. In a small saucepan, combine the barbecue sauce, milk, molasses, cocoa, and chili powder. Set the pan over medium heat and whisk the mixture until it is lukewarm and the cocoa is completely dissolved. Set it aside to cool. Sauté the onions in the tablespoon of canola oil until they are transparent, about 7 minutes. In a large bowl, whisk together the salt, celery salt, pepper, and bread crumbs. Then add the beef, egg, sauce mixture, and onion. Thoroughly mix the ingredients using your hands or a wooden spoon. Remove the pie shell from the freezer. Transfer the meat to the shell, spreading it evenly with a spoon. Bake it until the meat is cooked through, about 60 minutes. While the pie is baking, prepare the mashed potato topping. Place the potatoes in a large saucepan and add enough water to completely submerge them. Salt the water lightly, cover the pot, and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat slightly and cook the potatoes at a low boil until they are tender, about 12 minutes. While the potatoes cook, puree the beets and 1/4 cup warm milk in a blender until only small bits of beet are left in the mixture. Set aside. Drain the potatoes and transfer them to a large mixing bowl. Add the butter and pureed beets and, using an electric mixer, whip the mixture until it’s smooth and fluffy. Add more milk if needed and salt to taste. Spread the whipped potatoes over the top of the cooked meat pie with a spatula, as you would whipped cream, mounding it slightly in the center. Slice and serve the pie while the potatoes are still hot. Makes 8 servings.

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