Our tradition to eat a bunny for Easter, regardless of its shape and form, continues. For years I was serving baked rabbit and convincing my child that she was eating chicken with really big ears. Until I told her one year that Easter got canceled because we ate the Easter bunny. I am unsure if she ever forgave me. Last Easter we had bunny bread and bunny cake pops. I need creative ideas for the next year though.
You won’t believe how much fun I had baking this cake. Thank you Betty Crocker for the recipe! It was originally intended to be served at my daughter’s baby shower. She wanted to be surprised with the theme. See, ever since she was a little girl she was my “Bunny”. Her favorite nursery song is about the bunny, so it just made sense to heave a bunny themed baby shower. Ingredients for this cake were ready and bunny decorations were bought but she declared that she likes giraffes instead. Of course, my Bunny should have what Bunny wants and Bunny got giraffes. The bunny cake was put on the back burner for almost a whole year, until this Easter. The look on everyone’s face when they saw the cake was PRICELESS! One child wanted the bunny’s tail, another foot, the candy carrot…oh my!
I tweaked the original recipe just a little but am listing both options when they apply.
Ingredients: Serves many
1 box Super Moist dark chocolate or Devil’s Food cake mix (I used Devil’s Food)
Water, Oil and Eggs called for on cake mix 1 container Rich & Creamy Vanilla Frosting + red food color (I used 1 Vanilla and 1 Pink Lemonade Frosting, no food color) 1 large Marshmallow, cut in half lengthwise 2 cups Shredded Coconut (I used3 cups + green food color-this is optional) 2 cups coarsely crushed Chocolate Wafer Cookie crumbs (good luck finding those. I used chocolate brownie cookies) 2 cups Strawberry stretchy and tangy Taffy Candies (I could only find them in a variety bag) 1 roll Strawberry Fruit Roll-Ups (I used two red and one yellow to get the orange color) 3 green-colored Sour Candies, separated into strips Construction Paper (I used pink Wilton edible sugar sheets found at Wal-Mart)
You will also need 3 muffin cups and 1 ½-quart baking bowl. (I used two8-inch round baking pans instead of a bowl).
Heat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Make cake batter as directed on box. Pour cake batter in 3 greased, regular sized muffin cups, filling two-thirds full. Pour remaining batter into the lightly greased bowl or pans.
Bake cupcakes 17 to 21 minutes, bowl 47 to 53 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean (always perform this test as oven temperatures vary). Cool 10 minutes. Remove cakes from muffin cups and bowl/pans. Cool completely, about one hour. If necessary, cut off rounded tops of cakes.
Spoon all but 2 tablespoons of the vanilla frosting into large bowl. Add red food color to the bowl to make desired pink color. Skip this step if you’re using pink lemonade frosting. Place bowl cake on tray cut side down; spread 1/3 cup frosting over cake. I placed one round cake on a tray, topped with vanilla frosting, and then placed the second round cake on the top; I then spread a thin layer of frosting over the entire cake. Use frosting to adhere cupcakes for feet and bunny tail. Use toothpicks if necessary. Place marshmallow halves, cut sides down, on tops of 2 cupcakes to make heels of feet. Spread thin layer of frosting to seal in crumbs. Freeze cake 30 to 45 minutes to set frosting.
Spread remaining frosting over cake, using reserved 2 tablespoons white frosting to frost the bunny tail. Here I used the pink frosting for the bunny and vanilla for the tail. Sprinkle with coconut; press gently to adhere. Surround bunny with crushed chocolate cookies. Shake one cup coconut and 3 drops green food color in tightly covered jar until evenly tinted. Surround bunny with tinted coconut.
Use rolling pin to press strawberry candies into two rectangles. Soften the taffy candy in the microwave for 5-7 seconds to make it easier to flatten. Cut two large ovals and 6 small circles out of candy. Press onto bottoms of bunny feet, suing frosting if needed.
Roll up fruit snack to make carrot shapes. Cut green sour candies in half crosswise; press into large end of each carrot to make greens on carrot. Cut ears from construction or edible paper; wrap ends that will be inserted into cake with plastic food wrap. Insert into cake. Insert toothpicks to keep them upright. Remove ears, plastic wrap and toothpicks before serving. Sprinkle chocolate crumbs on the feet to make it look like the bunny was digging for the carrots. Hoppy Easter!
Jas is a cheesecake addict and the author of Balkan Comfort Food cookbook available on Amazon. You can download a free excerpt of the book when you subscribe to All that's Jas newsletter updates or purchase the full version below. To learn more about Jas visit her About page.