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Pumpkin Patch Cake

Betty blogger Heather Baird shows us how to bake up a pumpkin patch with mini cupcakes and a few easy cake decorating techniques.

heather_baird_80
Betty Blogger
Pumpkin Patch Cake
One of my favorite things about fall is our yearly trip to the local pumpkin patch. When it comes to selecting pumpkins to take home I can be really picky! Some are purely decorative (for the front porch), some are for carving spooky jack-o-lantern faces, and others are destined for pies. I can spend hours looking for just the right specimens for our many purposes. 

This cake is very much like going to a pumpkin patch– in miniature! It’s decorated with mini cupcakes frosted to look like little pumpkins, so guests can get interactive and choose their own pumpkin. Little kids will appreciate the playfulness of the mini cupcakes, and adults will appreciate a more substantial after-dinner slice.

First, line a mini cupcake tin with nine paper liners. Also, grease and flour a 9x9-inch square baking pan.

liners in mini muffin pans
Mix up the cake batter as directed on the box, and fill the cupcake papers 3/4 full. add batter to mini muffin pan
Pour the remaining batter into the 9x9-inch square pan. Bake the cake for about 25 minutes, and the mini cupcakes for 12-15 minutes. pouring batter into cake pan
Place about 1/3 of the cream cheese frosting from the container into a small bowl. Mix in red and yellow food color until a light orange color is achieved. ingredients for frosting
Frost cupcakes and cover with sanding sugar. You can do this by gently dipping the frosting in the sugar, or you can hold the cupcake over a plate and sprinkle the sugar over. putting sprinkles on frosted cupcakes
Break pretzel sticks in half and press into the center of each frosted and sugared mini cupcake. pretzel stick used as stem on cupcake
Use a toothpick to impress lines into the sides of the cupcake tops, making the ribs of the pumpkin. making details in frosting
Don’t drag the toothpick tip through the frosting; just press the edge of the toothpick into the icing to make a line. Easy does it! finished cupcake with details
Tint the remaining cream cheese frosting with green food coloring. Cover the square cake with the green frosting. frosting square cake with green frosting
Crush chocolate wafers and sprinkle over one corner of the cake. Sprinkle more crushed wafers in the center of the cake. This is a little patch of “dirt” on which the mini cupcake pumpkins will sit. putting crushed chocolate cookies on cake
Arrange pumpkins on the patch of crushed chocolate wafers. adding mini cupcakes on top of cake
Green sanding sugar and mint sprigs are the finishing touches on this cake. sprinkles
Just before serving, place mint leaves on the mini pumpkins near the pretzel stems, and arrange mint sprigs around the pumpkins to create the appearance of pumpkin vines. Pumpkin Patch Cake

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