(BPT) – The holidays will be here before you know it, and if you’re not sure how you’re going to wow your friends and family this year, Betty Crocker offers up these ideas – inspired by the hottest food trends of the season.
“Our team of food lovers at the Betty Crocker Kitchens selected what we think will be the season’s most popular food trends. Using these trends as inspiration, we created new recipes perfect for holiday get-togethers, family-time baking and gift giving,” says Kristen Olson, food editor at Betty Crocker. From cooking and baking with craft beer to families making memories with playful recipes there is something for everyone.
Alfajores Hidden Surprise Cookies: This year, secret ingredients, hidden surprises and revealing colors are on the menu. Put a new twist on an old classic by stacking these Argentinean sandwich cookies triple high and adding a secret pocket filled with sweet surprises.
Layers. Layers. Layers.
18 Layer Red Velvet Cake: This year has been all about layers, in everything from food to fashion. Take your holiday celebration to impressive new heights with a stunning 18-layer cake that guests will go gaga over.
Gluten free for all
Gluten Free Chocolate Truffle Cakes: Gluten free baking has come a long way. These indulgent mini cakes are filled and topped with ganache and sprinkled with crystallized ginger, pistachios and cacao nibs.
Chocolate Stout Caramel Corn: Craft breweries are enjoying a resurgence, and building community one pint at a time. Home brewers and food lovers alike are getting in on this trend too, as more are brewing, cooking and baking at home with beer. Stout beer, roasted almonds and plenty of milk chocolate chunks make this caramel popcorn an irresistible snack.
Elf Food: Families are getting creative in the kitchen, with adults and kids using playful recipes as a way to connect over food and craft. Together, they are making so much more than food – they’re making memories. A surefire way to lure elves from their hiding spots: combine candy sprinkles, maple syrup and tiny doughnuts (made from Cheerios!) for an irresistible mix.
Try the 18 Layer Red Velvet Cake to wow your guests, or the Craft Beer Caramel Corn for a great food gift. Find all the red hot holiday trends and recipes at www.BettyCrocker.com/redhot.
18 Layer Red Velvet Cake
With just a little effort on your part, this cake manages to create maximum “wow” factor for guests.
1 box Betty Crocker SuperMoist white cake mix
1 1/4 cups water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
Red Velvet Cake
1 box Betty Crocker SuperMoist German chocolate cake mix
1 cup water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons unsweetened baking cocoa
1 bottle (1 ounce) red liquid food color (about 2 tablespoons)
2 1/2 cups marshmallow creme (from two 7-ounce jars)
1 1/2 cups butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 to 2 tablespoons milk
4 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1. Heat oven to 350 F. Spray 3 (8-inch) round cake pans with cooking spray. Line bottom of each pan with cooking parchment paper. Spray parchment paper with cooking spray.
2. In large bowl, beat White Cake ingredients on low speed 30 seconds, then on medium speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Loosely cover and refrigerate.
3. In another large bowl, beat Red Velvet Cake ingredients on low speed 30 seconds, then on medium speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally.
4. Spread 1/2 cup red velvet batter in bottom of each pan. Loosely cover and refrigerate remaining batter. Place all 3 pans on oven rack positioned in center of oven. Bake about 8 minutes or until cake is set when lightly touched in center.
5. For next cake layer, spread 1/2 cup white batter evenly over each baked red velvet layer. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until cake is set when lightly touched in center.
6. Repeat steps 4 and 5, twice, baking 9 to 12 minutes per layer or until top of cake layer is set when lightly touched in center.
7. Cool 10 minutes. Remove cakes from pans; remove parchment paper from bottoms of cakes. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.
8. Meanwhile, in large bowl, beat marshmallow creme, butter, vanilla and 1 tablespoon milk with electric mixer on medium speed until blended. Beat in powdered sugar until fluffy. If necessary, beat in more milk, a few drops at a time until spreading consistency.
9. To assemble, stack cake layers, spreading 1/2 cup frosting between each layer. Spread remaining frosting on side and top of cake.
Chocolate Stout Caramel Corn
For a sweet treat that’s all grown up, try this rich-tasting play on the craft beer trend.
8 cups popped popcorn
1 cup roasted salted almonds
1/2 cup stout beer
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup brown rice syrup or corn syrup
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped premium milk chocolate (6 ounces)
1. Heat oven to 300 F. Line two 15x10x1-inch pans with foil. Spray foil with cooking spray.
2. In large bowl, place popcorn and almonds; set aside.
3. In 2-quart saucepan, heat beer over medium heat, stirring frequently, until reduced to 1/4 cup, about 6 minutes. Pour into glass liquid measuring cup to confirm measure. Add back to saucepan. Stir in brown sugar, syrup and butter. Cook over medium heat until bubbly around edges, stirring occasionally.
4. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook about 5 minutes longer, stirring occasionally, until thickened and syrupy. Remove from heat; carefully stir in salt. Pour over popcorn mix in bowl; toss until evenly coated. Spread popcorn mixture in pans.
5. Bake 20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, to caramelize mixture. Cool completely, about 1 hour. Break into pieces; stir in chocolate. Store in airtight container.