Hello Little Bakers,

Can you believe it’s already October? That means that very soon Santa will be on his merry way, but before we get too Jolly, October is Spooky Season and even if you don’t celebrate Halloween, who doesn’t love pumpkins! We’ve created a yummy chocolate tray bake that can either be transformed into a Pumpkin Patch or spooky Graveyard.

Let’s get our Spook On and get baking!

MAKE DECOR

You will want to make your decor a day ahead of time so that the fondant has time to set. We will be making pumpkins, farmer market sign or gravestones along with some spooky chocolate ghosts.

PUMPKINS

• Roll a chunk of the orange fondant into a little ball. You can vary the sizes as not all pumpkins are the same size. Press the pumpkin down a little bit.

• Poke a hole in the top of each with a toothpick and rotate in a circular motion, creating an opening for the pumpkin stem. Score lines into each pumpkin with a toothpick or the back of a butter knife from top to bottom. You can pipe the stem and leaves with your green royal icing.

PUMPKIN PATCH SIGN / GRAVESTONES

• If Making a Pumpkin Patch: Cut out the pumpkin patch farmer’s market sign. Roll out your grey fondant and place your template above the fondant and carefully cut around it or ask mommy to help. Allow your sign to dry overnight.

• If Making a Graveyard: Cut out the gravestone templates. Roll out your grey fondant and place your template above the fondant and carefully cut around it or ask mommy to help. Allow your gravestones to dry overnight.

MAKING BRUSH STROKE GHOSTS (OPTIONAL):

 

 

• Melt the white chocolate by placing the piping bag into the microwave and heating in small short bursts of 20 seconds until melted. Cut a hole at the bottom of your piping bag and pour about a teaspoon of the melted chocolate onto a piece of parchment paper.

• Using the back of your spoon, spatula or a paint brush smear the chocolate across the paper. Go back a few times to give the smear a spooky ghost shape.Repeat the process to make as many ghosts as you like.

• Set the ghosts aside to harden completely then use your edible marker to draw on eyes and mouth.

CHOCOLATE CAKE

• Grease a rectangular roasting dish or pan with butter or non-stick spray.

• Sieve the chocolate cake mix into a bowl.

• Dissolve coffee into lukewarm water. Add all the wet ingredients (eggs, oil, buttermilk and coffee) to your dry ingredients and whisk until combined and a smooth batter is formed.

• Add your chocolate chips to the batter.

• Pour the batter into your prepared roasting dish and bake at 180 degrees for 30 – 40 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.

CHOCOLATE BUTTERCREAM

• With a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy – about 2 minutes.

• Add chocolate buttercream mix and a teaspoon of vanilla extract. Beat on low speed for 30 seconds, then increase to high speed and beat for 1 full minute. Add milk little by little until you have a nice smooth chocolate buttercream that can be easily spread.

ASSEMBLY AND DECORATION 

If making a Pumpkin Patch:

• Once your cake has cooled spread the chocolate buttercream evenly over the top of the tray bake cake.

• Top with the Crushed Oreo.

• Pipe squiggly vines and leaves on top of the Oreo crush.

• Place your pumpkins on top of the vines.

• Write your name ( such as “ANNIE’S PUMPKIN PATCH”) onto your pumpkin patch sign and place it on your cake.

 

If making a Graveyard:

• Once your cake has cooled spread the chocolate buttercream evenly over the top of the tray bake cake.

• Top with the Crushed Oreo.

• Write different sayings (such as RIP) on the Gravestones.

• Decorate your grave yard with the gravestones, brush stroke ghosts and pumpkins. Use the green royal icing to pipe leaves and vines in between.