Cupcakes are the “My Little Pony” of Baking…

First Cupcake

My First Cupcake

…Or so says my husband.  He thinks cupcakes are an utterly twee and girly obsession, much like the My Little Pony phenomena, and while I don’t bake, I had bought a tray of some very nice cupcakes a couple of weeks ago which the man and boy were sort of fighting over after dinner.  Tweeness not necessarily an obstruction to scoffing then…

So, baking in all probability would be rather well received round our house, and above is my very first home-baked cupcake.  But, more of the provenance of my lovely cake (and BTW my very first attempt at piping frosting) later since in all probability this is likely to be the pinnacle of my achievements in this competitive field.  There are much better blog sources to go to for cupcake inspiration/porn/sheer wonder.  And there sure are some weird and wacky innovations in the cupcake world; what women can achieve in their own domestic environments amazes me…and slightly horrifies at the same time.  All that creative energy poured into paper cake cases and sprinkled on butter cream icing.

Or, indeed, delicately spooned into actual egg shells.  Easter cupcakes baked inside a hollowed out egg shell?  Check out this amazing feat in not just one blog but two: Cupcake Project and Delicious Days.

Cupcake flowers are very popular. Heaven is a Cupcake have some stunning examples of bouquet baskets, and claim to have originated the concept.  Cupcake wedding cake tiers to me are a bit “yesterday” but an actual cupcake wedding bouquet?  See this super example over at Souperior.

Cupcakes can celebrate every life stage, from baby showers to birthdays, marriages, divorces and remarkably, cupcakes can even mark the final event.  Sympathy cupcake bouquets (wreaths?) are being made and blogged about, e.g.over at Cakecentral.com.  The baker used “devil’s food cake mix” for the sponge and I am not entirely sure the irony was intended.  If it was, then that is bloody hilarious. I am thinking about putting in an advance order for a couple of folks I know who are unfortunately still with us.

Celebrations aside, cupcakes can also accompany you through life’s traumas.  We could all do worse than check into Cupcakes on Bedrest with a few words of encouragement for the blogger recovering from serious illness and distracting herself with cupcake making.  Don’t mention though the site http://www.cupcaketherapy.com.au, a commercial venture with the incredible tagline: “They taste so good you won’t want to be cured“.  Only in Oz.  And for experiments in pink champagne cupcakes (now that’s my kind of therapy) checkout a WordPress blog also called Cupcake Therapy.  Yet another therapy site–www.cupcaketherapy.biz of Baltimore–could send you a carton of their rather frankly named “piglets” or perhaps half a dozen “southern comforts”.  Eat, drink and be merry…all in a cupcake.

An amazing resource and a great place for generally surfing the world of cupcakes is the self-proclaimed #1 Blog about cupcakes, “Cupcakes Take the Cake“.  Their blogroll is truly awesome, hundreds of sites listed either dedicated to or that include the art of making pretty wee sponges.  Random browsing through their roll, I love/hate the vegan blog “Post Punk Kitchen” and can’t decide whether it is too sickly to be postmodern, or the epitome of post-postmodernism.  All I can say is that I won’t be making a punk rock cookie jar.  Or buying one of their naff aprons.  But, enough folks must like such kit(sch) or they wouldn’t have an online shop. (I should say in fairness that if they did oven gloves I might be tempted into a purchase myself.)

And so to the provenance of my own (and in light of all of the above, rather pathetically feeble) efforts.  My blog is about making family cooking easier, not harder.  Et Voila 😉

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Categories: Desserts, Oddities and Food Stories, Uncategorized

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8 Comments on “Cupcakes are the “My Little Pony” of Baking…”

  1. September 4, 2011 at 10:33 am #

    Cupcaaaaaaaaakes…..

    • September 4, 2011 at 10:43 am #

      Your new gravatar is the stuff of nightmares…

  2. September 4, 2011 at 9:08 pm #

    I used to use box mixes for cakes then I realised how much fun you can have ‘tweaking’ the recipe! Still resort to them sometimes when I’m cooking with my nephews – less mess as they can’t pull everything out of the baking cupboard in the search for ingredients!

  3. September 5, 2011 at 5:29 pm #

    Ooh they look lovely. Can I ask what you used to pipe the icing? Obviously a piping bag! – but I ordered a piping bag set and used the largest nozzle. The icing came out so thinly and I can’t find anything that specifically says it’s for piping icing thickly onto cupcakes. Please help!

    • September 5, 2011 at 5:44 pm #

      The set I used was some “basics” thing that I bought in Tesco Extra for £3, and I used the largest nozzle it had that had some serrated teeth pointing inwards and a dent — not sure if the dent is there for a purpose, probably is!. I had about half a dozen trial runs on baking paper and just scooped up these starter efforts and put the butter cream icing back in the piping bag. I could have said too that I had to put the topping in the fridge for a little while as it was too soft to pipe with when first made, it just came out the bag at first looking like, tbh, shiny doo doo swirls… Some of the other cakes (not pictured) did look a little Gaudi-esque in the end, but still wonderful in their own way. Best of luck, and if you end up spooning on the frosting, there are worse things in life and a bit of choclate sprinkle / cake glitter hides a multitude of sins.

  4. September 6, 2011 at 9:07 am #

    Thank you so much, that really helps. And yes, I had the doo doo problem!! My partner came into the kitchen as I was piping the icing and laughed; it didn’t look very appetising!
    I’ll try out the set from Tesco and see how that goes, thank you for all the tips.

  5. September 9, 2011 at 8:59 am #

    I’m a cupcake addict, but can never stop at just one!

  6. February 8, 2012 at 1:42 am #

    Thanks for the cupcake resources, I LOVE cupcakes!

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