Friday, February 26, 2010

Polka Dot Cupcake Cake

Here is another cupcake cake I have made. Don't judge my writing please. I did it on my counter and my shortness played a factor. I apparently need to start frosting on my table where I can be looking over the whole thing instead of down at an angle.

Despite that, I really like this cake. Not only do I like polka dots, and the color scheme, but it was snickerdoodle flavored (one of my most popular flavors). I love that people think they are getting ready to just eat a conventional cake and then biting into these.

Girls cakes are just so fun to make.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Soccer Balls and Booking

I had a crazy busy weekend. That being said, I am going to do a quick rant on booking.

CupKates is a one woman show. I don't have a sous chef, a babysitter, or even a maid. I do it ALL. And I like doing it all. But sometimes there is only so much one person can do.

Which is why some weekends I will book up. There will only be so many orders I can do, which means you may have to hear me say "no". I have issues telling people no, and I'm sure in business it will be no different, but for my sanity and my families there will be occasional times when it will be necessary.

The moral of the story being: contact me early. As soon as I get an email from someone about a potential date, I pencil it in and give you first priority. Even if you are unsure, you still have first dibs.

So that's the deal. On to the cupcakes.

One of the orders I had this weekend was for soccer ball cupcakes. I loved how these turned out. The black frosting wasn't a walk in the park (lesson learned: start with chocolate frosting), but I think it ended up tasting better with some slight tweaking. The chocolate vanilla frosting was great. Reminded me of those old school ice cream cones you would get. I feel a potential new cupcake flavor forming from this...

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Toy Story Cupcake Cake

Finally! It turned out!!! I'm not going to lie I had my first major baking mishap on this one. It was just a rough day. I originally had envisioned the bed being made out of tinted sugar cookies (I don't know why, it seems like a foolish idea hindsight, I think I must have been on a kick from V-Day or something...) which was a failure of epic proportions. Mainly because I spent all day on the failing.

Then, when I went to go get my boxes that I get from a specialty cake store 1/2 an hour away, they had forgotten to put my cake boards in the bag. The pretty shiny, white GLOSSY cake boards.

So I was a day behind with no time to get the right boards. Hobby Lobby it was. Their cake boards were cardboard. And not exactly the right size for my boxes. Boo. So my pretty piping and any tiny slip of the cupcakes touching the cardboard left lovely grease spots. Yay.

But I triumphed over the day of doom! And I was pretty happy with the results.

The whole thing is edible. Vanilla cupcakes with cream cheese frosting. It's all cupcakes too.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


I have been getting more and more request for favors, and I must say I love it.

Not only do I get to make super cute cupcakes, but favors allow me creative freedom in making a unique and special cupcake as well as fun in the packaging.

Besides there is something special about knowing that the people you are making them for are giving them to other people as a unique and special way to say thank you/you're special/i love you, etc. It's fun to know you are part of something that will make someone smile.

These favors were for Valentine's Day and went to students teachers. As you can see some have two cupcakes in them and come have one.

Also, I will apologize for my stinky food photography. Photography 101 is pretty much NEVER use a flash, unless you absolutely positively must, but even then avoid it at all costs. I was in such a hurry when I was taking these pictures, and it was so gloomy outside. Not only did I use a flash but I (gasp) put it in automatic mode (where the camera does everything). Forgive me.

I also cannot wait to show y'all this cupcake cake I'm making for a Thursday birthday party. If it turns out anything like what I have pictured in my mind I will be impressed by myself. Hopefully it equals my expectations!

Friday, February 12, 2010

*healthy* cupcakes

Just because I have a cupcake business, doesn't mean I like my kids having sugar.

In fact I'm not a big fan of it at all and try to limit it whenever I can.

When we have leftover cupcakes I usually push them on other peoples children (or just other people) to get them out of my house. And unless they my kids have been cupcake deprived, they usually don't notice that they're gone.

That said, my 20 month old knows the word "cupcake". Him and big brother hadn't had cupcakes in quite sometime and I had just gotten my Kiwi magazine (focused on parents and health) for the month that spotlighted a chocolate zucchini cupcake. I conveniently had several bags of shredded zucchini still in my freezer from my garden this summer so I thought I would put it to use.

Here is the recipe with my modifications in parenthesis:

Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes from Kiwi magazine:
2 cups white whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons cocoa
1 cup extra light olive oil (I used canola)
2 cups turbinado sugar (I used regular sugar)
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups grated zucchini
3/4 cup dark chocolate chopped (I used 3/4 ghiradelli dark chocolate chips)
Preheat over to 350
Mix flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and cocoa in a bowl, set aside.
Using a mixer cream the oil and sugar until smooth, add eggs one at a time beating about a minute in between each addition. Mix in vanilla.
Add the zucchini and chocolate and mix well. Add dry ingredients in three batches, mixing in between.
Line muffin cups and fill 2/3 of the way full. Bake about 20-25 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.
1/2 cup heavy cream
8 ounces dark chocolate (I used more of the ghiradelli dark chocolate chips)
1 teaspoon vanilla
(They have other directions, but I'm going to give you the easy way, because that's how I roll)
Place all ingredients in a microwave safe bowl, heat in 30 second intervals stirring well in between. Should need no more than a minute, be careful not to overcook.
Dip cupcakes in ganache, top with pretty sprinkles and allow 15 minutes to set.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Made with Love

Valentine's Day, the holiday of love. Personally I have never been the world's biggest Valentine's Day person (I know I'm terrible). I have good reasons! Everything is marked up twice it's normal price, all the good restaurants are booked a month out, and the biggest one: I think most people use it as a cop out. They seem to think if you do all the right things that day your exempt from showing people around you that love them on a day in and day out basis.

I'm all for showing people I love them any and every opportunity I can, and love it when people do the same. Sometimes the most loving thing is a random note from a friend or unexpected date night with the one you love.

That being said...I love Valentine's Day with kids. It's just a whole other entity. You have the opportunity to emphasize what showing love looks like and have a day to demonstrate it. And it's impartial, at least at Josh's school. Every kid gets a Valentine, no body gets left out or feels lonely.

And the cupcakes...who knew Valentine's cupcakes could be so much fun. I think this may be one of the more fun holidays for themed cupcakes. Who knows, between the boys being old enough to enjoy it and the fun cupcakes, maybe Valentine's Day will win me over yet.

Chocolate covered strawberry minis. Eventually I plan on doing a regular sized version of these with an actual chocolate covered strawberry on top.

Red Velvets with sugar cookies laid on top

Red velvets with sugar cookie "suckers"
Coming later this week: a healthy cupcake and the recipe!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Are you Ready for some Football?

I've been gearing up for game day by baking lots and LOTS of cupcakes. Football themed cupcakes. Here are some of the results:

These are chocolate covered strawberry cupcakes, strawberry cupcake with chocolate frosting decorated like a football
In case there is any confusion who we are rooting for... Go Colts! Instead of "red" velvet, I made "blue" velvet cupcakes with the horseshoe emblem on top

These are a new flavor I tried out (also I couldn't decide which way of frosting the football I like better): Neapolitan, which are vanilla cupcakes filled with strawberry cream and topped with chocolate frosting.
Feel free to let me know which football you like better so I can make notes for next year! Hope ya'll have a fun day tomorrow!
I can't wait to show ya'll the Valentine's Day stuff I've been working!