Sweets to Eat: Twinkie Tiramisu Recipe for Serious Eats

It's official: Hostess, the maker of Twinkies, has filed for Chapter 11.

While this doesn't necessarily mean the demise of the iconic treat, it's as good an excuse as any to stockpile on the sweet snack cakes and make something amazing:Twinkie Tiramisu.

This dessert is not difficult to make: basically, what you're doing is swapping Twinkies for ladyfingers in a traditional Tiramisu recipe. The sponginess of the Twinkies soaks up the flavors of the espresso-and-cream mixture, and they lend a little extra creaminess to the final dish. It makes for a fine mix of pinkies-out dessert and guilty-pleasure junk food.

Note: This dessert is made with raw eggs. There is a slight risk of salmonella or other food-borne illness. To reduce this risk, it is recommended that you use only fresh, properly refrigerated, clean grade A or AA eggs with intact shells, and avoid contact between the yolks or whites and the shell.

For the full entry and recipe, visit Serious Eats!

CakeSpy's Twinkie Killing Spree Featured on CNN!

You guys. My Twinkie Killing Spree is apparently big news--not only has it been called "mostly stupid" by Eater SF, but it was also featured on CNN! (Am I the only one who sees the humor in that sentence?

Watch the video on CNN by clicking the clip above, or find the link here. I'm also mentioned on their Eatocracy blog! And congratulate me on my entry into Twinkie Pop Culture history!

Twinkie, Twinkie, Little Star: The Story of a Lunchbox Icon

We'd say that once it has made a cameo in a Weird Al movie, been spoofed on The Family Guy and been the subject of an entire cookbook, a baked good has pretty much carved out its place as a cultural icon.

We are talking, of course, about the Twinkie.

What is it about Twinkies? Quite literally, they’re a strange, vaguely neon-toned yellow oblong cream-filled sponge cake with a very long list of ingredients...and yet, they've had a place in our lunchboxes and our hearts since as long as we can remember.

But how did this all happen? The Cakespy crew did some sleuthing:

We’ll begin our story in the early 1930s, in Illinois, at the site of the Continental Baking Company (owners of Hostess and Wonder Bread, which we think you’ve heard of). It was here, in the post-depression era, that industrious bakery manager James (“Jimmy”) Dewar noticed that a machine used for strawberry shortcakes (Hostess Little Shortbread Fingers...seen them around lately?) was going unused during the non-strawberry season, and so repurposed the pans to make a sponge cake filled with a banana cream filling. As lore would have it, he got the idea for the name when driving by a billboard advertising “Twinkle toe shoes”, which he shortened to “Twinkies”. In later years during WW2, due to banana shortages, the cream was changed to vanilla.

It wasn't till the 60's and 70's though, that they secured their place as a lunchbox legend. During this time two major things happened: first, their recipe changed. The original (preservative-free)Twinkies’ shelf life was a mere 2 days, and as much as they tried to replenish, it proved much cheaper to replace the natural fats in the pastry with longer shelf-life chemical ones. Contrary to popular belief though, Twinkies don’t last forever; the suggested shelf life these days is 25 days, although recently one 30 year-old one was recently found in Maine (that one was described as intact but “brittle"). The second thing was that they came up with the character Twinkie the Kid, based on a character from Howdy Doody. So how did these two seemingly unrelated things prove pivotal to the Twinkie? Well, the new recipe allowed them to be the perfect lunch box treat, and the Twinkie the Kid character made Twinkies something that kids wanted in their lunchboxes.

The rest, as they say, is history. While changes have come around (bringing back the original banana flavor; attempts at new flavors), it is still that basic cream-filled Twinkie that remains. While the Cakespy crew rarely eats Twinkies from the package anymore--that whole preservative thing--we do love the combination of flavors in Twinkies, and so are loving the new crop of Twinkie-flavored cupcakes and freshly baked gourmet desserts inspired by the classic treats. If like us you'd like a fresher and better-for-your-body alternative (hey, it's all relative), you may find that Vegan or homemade Twinkies are a much more palatable choice.


Here are some resources:

-For a great Vegan Twinkies Recipe, visit shmooedfood.blogspot.com.
-For a homemade Twinkie recipe, visit recipezaar.com.
-For a gourmet Twinkie cupcake recipe, check out reinsrecipes.blogspot.com.

-For a Twinkie Cake recipe from the Twinkie Cookbook, visit cookiemadness.net.



Cakespy Note: this history would not have been possible without the help of some wonderful resources, including: Twinkie, Deconstructed by Steve Ettinger, kitchenproject.com, wikipedia.org and howstuffworks.com.