It's almost Halloween, and now is the time to begin perfecting those fun, gross or otherwise ridiculous recipes like severed finger cookies, kitty litter cake or ectoplasm for your festivities. Here's a look at my first practice run of a possible Halloween goodie known as a meat cake.
Look carefully - don't those cupcakes look delicious? Ok, so they don't fool anyone, because in my attempt to make a meat cake, I took a shortcut and decided on the smaller, trendier version. That was the beginning of the end for my meaty adventure.
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The original idea came from this post on Black Widow Bakery, which turned out much more cake-like than my glorified, frosted meatballs shoved in baking cups.
Part of my problem was forgetting about meat shrinkage. When I divided up the meatloaf mixture in a cozy little cupcake pan, I underestimated the meat juices that would begin flowing during the cooking process. When I took them out of the oven, they were much smaller and less formed than the original raw meat that had gone into the oven.
The baking cups were incredibly soggy with grease and moisture, rendering them useless, so I had to replace the baking cups in the end. The problem with the new baking cups is their lack of cling to the meat form - hence the look of a meatball stuck in a fancy little container rather than a trick-or-treat version of a cupcake. The mashed potato frosting worked perfectly, but sadly, it wasn't enough to save my lumpy, pathetic-looking meat cupcakes.
Just in case you want to try your hand at a meat cake, I suggest you learn from my mistakes and go for a more majestic, three layer version like the one shown on the Black Widow Bakery site and stay far, far away from the cupcake pan.