I don’t like putting myself into positions where I’m easily ooged out, creeped out, scared, terrified, horrified, frightened, or anything related to being freaked out.
It’s just not my thing.
You know those horror movie buffs? The ones who get their kicks on watching creeptastical movies about serial murderers and ghosts and demons and chainsaw massacre-ists?
A long time ago I was home sick one day when I decided to turn on I Know What You Did Last Summer with Freddie Prinze Jr and Sarah Michelle Gellar. Remember that one? The teen flick where the teens accidentally off some unfortunate character and someone knows about it and taunts them?
I was scared for weeks that someone knew what I was up to.
Not that I was running people over in my car or anything; I was only 12 years old or something. But just because, you know, it could happen.
And then I got a boyfriend who was a serious horror-movie buff. He peer-pressured me into watching Texas Chainsaw Massacre, the new one with Jessica Biel, and I was secretly dying of fear inside.
I don’t do road trips, so it’s not like I would ever be in a position with a group of friends and a weird chick with a gun inside her yoohoo, running away from some masked man wearing skin on his face, but seriously, it COULD HAPPEN.
In completely different circumstances, but still.
So it was loosely based on Ed Gein, a very real man, but come on. Loosely based? That means based which means it’s REAL. Which means I could definitely be cut up by some wack-job wearing my facial skin on top of his.
I guess I have too much of an imagination to watch scary movies. I don’t remove the “this isn’t real” mental block before I dive right into a horror flick.
I become thoroughly absorbed, severely interested in the plot and the creepy piano music and the scary jumping-out parts.
And then my stomach hurts. And I feel the need to go to the bathroom.
And I get the jitters. And my palms sweat and I check the room, justtomakesure there’s no lurking spirit watching me watch a scary movie, waiting on its perfect opportunity to haunt the crap out of me and prove that scary movies are, in fact, super real.
So naturally, I watched Insidious the other night.
But despite the weird red-faced demon who sharpens its claws to Tiny Tim’s “Tiptoe Through the Tulips” (which, subsequently, I’ve had in my head CONSTANTLY since then–I’ve perfected Tim’s yodel, which is pretty nifty) I wasn’t terribly ooged.
#1 because I watched it during the day–a significant difference in watching creepy things at nighttime, which makes it 455687345x scarier, and #2 I had my boyfriend, all skin and bones of him, to protect me against demon spirits and astro-projecting my body into a foggy house full of creepy girls in Little House on the Prairie outfits holding shotguns.
Don’t tell me you didn’t think that was weird.
This is completely irrelevant to this post, but as it were, the movie is currently playing in my living room for my mother, who has yet to experience the demonic possession pish-posh (I can only make fun of it now that I’m not scared anymore, obviously).
To break away from the freak-show, I baked up some cupcakes for a family friend. She wanted a strawberry and vanilla flavor, similar to a strawberry shortcake. Since it was her mother’s birthday, she wanted something delightfully festive and pretty. So making candy strawberries seemed like a wonderful idea.
I found this initial idea in Betty Crocker’s Big Book of Cupcakes, an excellent book chock-full of amazing decorating ideas and recipes that I treat like my bible. If any demons stole this, I swear, I’d flip my you-know-what and kick some demon ass.
But that’s another story for another time.
Wanna make these cuties?
Candy Strawberry Cupcakes
1 box white cake mix, plus ingredients on back of box
1 small box sugar free/fat free vanilla or French vanilla pudding mix
1/2 cup strawberry jelly or jam, preferably seedless
About 50 small red gumdrops, halved (more or less depending on how many you want per cupcake)
Green frosting or gel (in a tube)
Vanilla buttercream frosting (recipe and ingredients follow) + green food gel coloring
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 muffin pans with 24 paper liners. In a bowl, prepare cake mix according to package directions. Stir or blend in pudding mix until combined. Portion one small scoop of batter to cover bottom of paper liner; top with one small teaspoon or strawberry jelly. Cover with remaining batter, about 2/3 full. Bake, approximately 16-18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool completely.
2. Meanwhile, prepare decoration. With a small, sharp knife, cut small gumdrops in half lengthwise to create two dome shapes. If needed, round the tips to create a strawberry shape. Prepare frosting, and frost cupcakes. Place the cut side against the frosted cupcake. Using the green tube frosting, carefully pipe on leaves on the tops of the strawberries.
Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
2/3 cup butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
About 4-5 cups powdered sugar
1-2 tsp milk, if needed
1. In a large bowl of a stand mixer, beat together butter and vanilla until creamy, about 2 minutes. Gradually add in powdered sugar, one cup at a time, until a stiff yet spreadable consistency is reached. Add milk if frosting becomes too thick. Beat in green food coloring until you’ve reached a desired green shade. You may want to double this recipe if you’re piping your icing on high, like mine.
Aren’t these super cute?!
Perfect for a spring or summer party, but really, who would say no to these cuties any time of year?
And they’re the perfect excuse to bake, whether you’re trying to get out of seeing a creepy movie or maybe trying to coerce a demon from possessing your body. You never know.