This recipe is my creation because I loved these treats as a kid and wanted my kids to experience them, but without all of the chemicals and additives and aftertaste. These are a great snack/dessert for the family. A bit time-consuming, but not bad and so worth it anyway. Enjoy!
1To make boats, use a piece of aluminum foil cut to about 14 inches. Fold in half lengthwise, then in half widthwise. Using a spice jar, form the foil around the jar by folding in the ends and folding down any excess foil to create a boat shape similar to a Twinkie shape. You can also buy the Twinkie pan online or in bakery supply stores. Spray with non-stick baking spray.
2To make cake: In bowl mix eggs, oil, and water until combined. Add cake mix and blend for 2 minutes on medium speed. Blend in pudding mix on medium for an additional 3 minutes until smooth. Place 2.25 oz. of batter into each boat and bake at 325° for 11-15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center of one comes out clean. Cool completely.
3To make filling: Combine butter, shortening, vanilla, and salt in mixer bowl and blend on medium high for about 3 minutes or until mixture comes together and becomes creamy with no lumps. Add confectioner’s sugar and starting on low speed and gradually increasing to high, blend until light and airy. Add marshmallow fluff and blend on high until once again light and airy.
4For Zingers: Boil water, add Jell-O and stir to combine. Place in refrigerator for 15 – 30 minutes or until thick but not set. Place coconut flakes in food processor and pulse until flakes are very small. Dump into a dish and add cornstarch, starting with 2 T. and increasing if necessary to get a nice loose texture.
5For Twinkies: With a knife, cut a small slit in the top side of the cake. Using an icing bag, pipe a good amount of filling into the cavity, holding the shape of the cake with your hand to prevent splitting. Once filled, place cut side down on the cooling rack and continue to fill remaining cakes.
6For Zingers: Fill cakes as for Twinkles. Once that is completed, place the prepared Jell-O into a low baking dish or other container and roll the cake to cover completely. Move somewhat quickly to avoid completely soaking the cake. Placing the coconut in a similar dish, immediately roll the cake in the prepared coconut and place on the rack to set for approximately 2 hours.