Vanilla-Bean Quickies

I admit, this is a tongue and cheek version of my whoopie pie - smaller than my normal 4" behemoth ones, these are little 2" treasures.  I figured calling them a Quickie was only natural since they are a Whoopie in miniature.  Loaded with vanilla-beans and butter - you will most certainly be able to find time for a Quickie now, no matter what your schedule.

As with all my baking, I combine my dry ingredients together first in the mixing bowl then add my room-temperature butter to cream - THEN add my wet ingredients to create the batter.  I find this results in a more tender crumb.  For my pans I used the Whoopie Pie Pans available through Williams-Sonoma, normally I used muffin top pans.  This recipe below will make you 3.5 pans of mini whoopie pies or give you to 9" cakes.  Always, always, always line them with parchment - if you do not, you will be kicking yourself when you try to remove them.  I always parchment line my cake pans since it is going to be the one time I do not that it sticks and then I have to start over - not fun.

1 3/4 cup cake flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup unsalted butter or butter-flavored shortening
1 tbsp. vanilla-bean paste
4 large eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  In the bowl of your mixer with the paddle attachment, add the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt - then add softened butter or shortening and mix on medium until well combined.  Combine liquid ingredients in a liquid measuring cup and stir with a fork to combine, then add to dry ingredients - using a spatula to make sure all of the ingredients are incorporated.  Place 1.5 tbsp batter into each parchment-prepared well, then place in oven and bake for 12-15 minutes - until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.  Repeat with other pans.  Place pans on a cooling rack to completely cool and then remove the little cakes and set aside until ready to assemble.

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup (1 stick) regular shortening
1 - 7 oz. jar marshmallow fluff
1/2 lb powdered sugar
1 tbsp. vanilla-bean paste

Place items into the bowl of a mixer and beat until thoroughly combined, using a spatula to scrape the side to make sure it is well incorporated.  At this point, you can either use a icing spatula to fill them with approximately 1/4 cup filling or in this case, I chose to place it into a piping back fitted with a large star tip to create an interesting visual effect.  The powdered sugar topping was merely a way to 'guild the lily' as they say.

I hope you enjoy having a quickie!

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