I feel like I've been making cookies all week, so I decided to take it easy today and make some cupcakes.
Here they are; candy cane cupcakes!
I'm not going to post the recipe because these were really simple. I took a vanilla cupcake recipe (makes 36 cupcakes) and crushed about a dozen candy canes and added it to the batter along with 1/2 tsp peppermint flavouring. I crushed the candy canes by putting them in a ziplock bag and hammering them with the bottom of a wine bottle for about three minutes before deciding that the food processor would be easier (which it was!).
The frosting is a plain, white buttercream with peppermint extract instead of vanilla. To get the red and green swirls, I 'striped' a disposable icing bag. Just use a small paint brush to paint a stripe of icing colours up the inside of the bag. I did one green stripe and one red stripe opposite the green. The only downside to using this method is that you have to use a new bag every time you need to refill. The last touch was to use cupcake cups with candy cane coloured stripes. They're made by Wilton.
Here's a picture of the inside of the cupcakes. The candy canes melted while the cupcake baked, leaving little flecks of colour and a mild minty flavor.
I think the trick with these is to make sure the mint is present but not overpowering. I think I managed a pretty good balance with a mildly minty cake and a stronger flavour (but not toothpaste strong!) in the frosting.