- 1 recipe chocolate or vanilla cupcakes
- salted pretzels (around 50) broken in half evenly, for garnish
- 24 candied or maraschino cherries (stems removed and patted dry, if needed), for garnish
- 10 ounces semisweet chocolate (not chips)
- 1 pint heavy whipping cream
- pinch of salt
- Make the frosting: In a medium saucepan, add the chocolate and heavy cream; cook over low heat, stirring frequently with a heatproof spatula, until the chocolate is melted and fully incorporated. Remove from the heat and transfer to a bowl. Let cool slightly, then refrigerate until chilled and thickened slightly, 1 hour.
- Transfer the chocolate to the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the whisk attachment, beat on high speed until fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes.
- Using a round-tipped piping bag and working in a spiral motion, cover the top of each cupcake with a layer of the whipped ganache frosting. Place one pretzel piece into the two sides of each cupcake (Because the pretzels will not break into perfectly even “antlers” every time, have on-hand a few dozen more than you think you’ll need) pressing it into the cake to stand at a 45 degree angle, to form antlers. Gently place a cherry “nose” into the bottom center of the frosting. Repeat with the remaining cupcakes.