Thursday, October 24, 2013

When was the last time you made whoopie...

It sounds like a question from a bad game show, but when was the last time you made whoopie... pie?

Home-baked Whoopie Pies are an American tradition.

This was an obviously fun shoot.  Bad jokes and puns were flying across the studio.  But while we were having fun, we also had a somewhat difficult subject.  The combination of very dark chocolate pastry sandwiching a very white filling created a challenge.  The contrast between the two had to be brought closer together.  We firmly believe that being able to do a project like this 'in camera' is an art form. The term, 'in camera' dates back, and people may not know what we mean.  Doing a shot 'in camera' means no Photoshop!

We do have a practical side as well.  Technology is progressing, with the intent of making our lives easier.  Photoshop allows us to do some amazing things and saves us a lot of time. So we mixed the art form of shooting 'in camera' and the technology of Photoshop to help us finish this shot.

We used a soft light source from above. This gave us a starting point to control the contrast.  We then brought in a point light source, from directly behind the subject, to produce the highlights on the chocolate pastry.  This light was just blowing out the cream filling.  So we took a separate photo with the same light dialed down, so the filling was properly exposed.  The two photos were later merged in Photoshop

We also used a white card to reflect some of the point light source (from the rear) back onto the front of the shot.
Okay, so the story goes that as far back as the 1930s, Whoopie Pies, also known as ‘gobs,’ were made in New England, and when farmers or their kids found them in their lunch boxes, they yelled “Whoopie!” Supposedly, they were made with leftover cake batter, but who ever heard of leftover cake batter?

The real Whoopie Pie is a delicious dessert sandwich, about the size of a hamburger, made with two soft cookies and a cream filling. Today, if you want to make one, it’s just a matter of combining ready-made ingredients and baking. Or use your preferred chocolate cake recipe.

Easy Peasy Whoopie Pie Recipe

‘Cookie’ parts:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Line cookie sheets with foil and spray with Pam.

Combine in bowl and beat:
1 cake mix (chocolate or devil's food cake mix)
¾ cup water
1 (3-ounce) package of instant chocolate pudding

Carefully place batter in ¼ cup dollops about 2” apart on the cookie sheets.
Bake 15 minutes and allow to cool on rack.


Combine in bowl and beat:
1 cup butter
1-1/2 cups powdered sugar
2 cups Marshmallow Fluff

1-1/2 tsp vanilla

Make the sandwiches with two ‘cookies’ and filling. Yields up to 10 sandwiches, depending on size.

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