I can say without a doubt that is definitely the grossest title for a blog update I have ever written. And these are probably the ickiest treat I have ever made (or do you think the eyeball cupcakes win?) But really, that’s the fun of Halloween! I’ve been wanting to make these since last Halloween but of course, there never seems to be an appropriate occasion for such confections. Even as a physician, I was never quite sure if my colleagues would find it funny or just creepy and gross so I held off. (Wouldn’t they be funny for our neuropathologists, though?!) Finally Halloween is here and my opportunity has arrived!
These are simple enough to make, and you can really use whatever recipes you like for cake, frosting and filling – only the method is important. Bake whatever cupcakes you wish – I used Dorie’s Perfect Party Cake – hope she doesn’t mind :). I decided to use canned cherry pie filling for the blood clot and though I had intended to puree it, I thought the cherries would give it a more clotted look (haha!) I suppose you could puree it and call it a hemorrhagic stroke. I used my usual vanilla buttercream for the icing, and colored it with very small amounts of red, brown and black to achieve that cerebral cortex color. Then just squiggle on top to get the effect of the gyri and sulci of the brain. (I cannot tell you how much it pains me that these are not even remotely anatomically correct, but it would have been impossible.) To help get the look of a brain, try to decorate in two halves to give the look of hemispheres, try to give it a domed shape, and make the sides as symmetrical as possible.
I also made a few with vessels using red decorating gel, but I’m not sure I like it as well. To me it kind of looks like subarachnoid hemorrhage – but I’m sure that’s just me, and normal people wouldn’t think about such bizarre things. Happy Halloween, everyone!