Sunday, May 15, 2011

Meat Cakes

It was my pal Dave's birthday. Dave is fellow foodie and I asked him if he wanted a special cake for his birthday and he threw me for a bit of a loop when he told me that he isn't a cake fan. He's not a huge sweets guy and prefers savoury flavours hands down. So, I did what any good friend would do, I decided that I would make Dave meat cupcakes for his birthday.
I hyped up them up quite a bit- so I was feeling some pressure to knock it out of the park. After some research, I found an interesting recipe online that fit my concept, took a shopping trip to get all of the supplies, and went for it.

Ingredients I used:
-1 medium white onion chopped pretty fine
-1 cup oats
-2 eggs, beaten
-1 can of V8 juice
-1/4 cup pitted prunes, finely chopped
-2 tbsp prepared horseradish sauce
-1 and 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
-1/2 pound ground pork
-3 tbsp ketchup
-1 tsp dry mustard
-6 large yellow potatoes, peeled and cut in quarters
-3 tbsp butter
-1/2 cup 1% milk
-3 tbsp light cream cheese
-salt to taste
-bacon bits

Makin' Meat Cakes:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large bowl, combine onion, oats, eggs, tomato juice, prunes, horseradish sauce, salt, dry mustard and mix well.

Add the beef and pork and mix until just combined. Use your hands and really get in there!
Scoop the meat mixture into the cupcake tin, pack the meat in there and level off, then add a rounded scoop of meat on top to create a rounded "cupcake-like" top (these cupcakes won't rise).

The recipe said to bake for 30-35 minute but I think that would've made the party-goers pretty sick because they still looked pretty pink at that point. I ended up turning down the heat slightly (300 F) and baking them for just over an hour.
Take out and let these meaty cakes cool.

Makin' Mashed Potato Icing:
Boil the potatoes in salted water for about 25 minutes, until tender, drain completely let cool and then move to a mashing bowl and start mashing with a hand masher. In a small pot, heat up butter and milk until butter is melted completely and milk is warm. Pour in the milk/butter mixture slowly and work in using a hand blender to whip potatoes into a creamy texture. Add cream cheese and mix with hand blender. Add salt to taste and stir in gradually.

When meat cakes have cooled- spread a large dollop of mashed potato icing on each cupcake and top with bacon bits for garnish.
The recipe I used called for piping the mashed potatoes like regular icing using a plastic bag with the tip cut off. I tried this and the bag pretty much busted open and covered my kitchen table and myself with creamy mashed potatoes. I wouldn't recommend that technique unless you are experienced and have the proper piping gear. I wish I could've taken photos of the mess but I didn't want to ruin my iphone with mashed potato covered hands.

These were fun and pretty simple to make. Next time, I would sub V8 juice for tomato paste (I think the mixture was a bit too liquidy and I might sub chopped olives or jalepenos in for the prunes. Also, I had to serve these cold at the track, and they were pretty tasty, but it you have access to an oven, I would recommend toasting these puppies up a little bit before serving to make them even better and forming a slightly crispy potato crust on top. YUM!

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