A elegant presentation for a dessert party or festive gathering. White chocolate leaves adorn red velvet cupcakes frosted with cream cheese icing.
- 12 red velvet cupcakes in white liners (I used a cake mix)
- 80 mint leaves (60 large and 20 small) from two bunches of fresh mint
- 340 g (12 oz) white chocolate melting wafers
- 113 g (4 oz) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 227 g (8 oz) cream cheese, at room temperature
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 227 g (8 oz or 2 c) confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- 40 red candies
- 1 decorative ribbon
Make the frosting
- Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and cream cheese on medium-high speed until fluffy and light in color (2 minutes). Beat in the vanilla. Gradually beat in the sifted confectioners’ sugar and continue beating until fluffy (3-5 minutes).
Assemble the cupcakes
- Line two large cookie sheets with wax or parchment paper. Pluck the mint leaves from the stems. Wash and pat dry with paper towels.
- In a medium bowl, microwave the white chocolate wafers until smooth, stirring frequently (about 1 minute).
- Using a small, clean craft brush (or your fingertip) coat the top side of each mint leaf with an even layer of the melted chocolate. Transfer to one of the lined cookie sheets, chocolate side up, and allow the leaf to bend and curve slightly. Repeat with the remaining leaves. If the chocolate thickens too much, reheat in the microwave for a few seconds, stirring well. Place the leaves in the fridge to set (about 10 minutes).
- Carefully peel the leaves from the hardened chocolate. You’ll be surprised at how easily it comes off, though you may need to remove some small pieces of lingering mint with tweezers or toothpicks. (You can make the leaves up to 5 days in advance. Keep covered in a cool, dry place until ready to use.)
- Spoon about 1/4 c of the icing into a pastry bag or small ziplock bag. You’ll use it to dot on the icing for the red berries once the leaves are in place. Set aside. Use the remaining icing to spread across the top of the cupcakes.
- Press about six chocolate leaves onto each cupcake, orienting them in the same direction. Snip the tip of the icing bag or the corner of the ziplock bag and pipe dots of frosting randomly over the leaves to attach the red candies. Arrange the cupcakes on a platter or tray and place the red bow.