As much as my niece loves making cookies with me, sometimes she has a hankering for a cupcake. And why shouldn't she? Cupcakes are great! Almost any cake recipe can be turned into a cupcake, just pour the batter into lined muffin tins and bake away. The key is having a few really great cake recipes, and then cutting down the bake time.
The cake part is actually the easiest component of this equation. It's the decorating that usually trips people up. When we get to the decorating part, my nephew is always right there ready to help and get in on the action. They both love decorating cupcakes and usually need to be very distracted so that we can let the cake part cool. Ever tried to decorate a warm cupcake? I did once when I was young as I turned my nose up at the instructions that said to let the cake cool. I thought why could that be so important, the cake is done and therefore I will now finish it. Yeah, that was the only time that I ever did that. By the way, cleaning frosting up out of tile grout is not fun, especially when that frosting is chocolate and the tile is white! So lesson learned, and one that I make sure my niece and nephew never repeat.
I usually make a couple of easy frostings for them to use, break out the pallet knives and we're off! The best part of their decorating is the bag of sprinkles that I have for them, and a little glitter too. Elana likes to place each piece down and Evan likes to dump them all over the top and watch where they land. Either method works, and we all love watching them make a special one for each of us!
My colleague Chef Kim and I just tested a new batch of recipes for Cupcake Boot Camp: New Fall menu coming next month. We got rave reviews from everyone who tried them. Some people could not believe that one of the cupcakes was gluten free, it tasted so good! Even if you have taken this class with us before, you must do it again. The cake recipes are all new (one so easy and delicious that you can be in the oven baking in 5 minutes) and there are new twists on some classic frosting recipes!
Here's the new seasonal menu:
- Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting
- Apple Cinnamon Cupcakes with Caramel Frosting
- Sweet Potato Cupcakes with Toasted Marshmallow Frosting
- Cranberry Cupcakes with White Chocolate Ganache and Candied Orange Zest
- Gluten-Free Chocolate Bourbon Cupcakes with Milk Chocolate Frosting
What is your favorite flavor of cupcake?