For those who know me, it’s no secret that I love my sweets. Candy bars, ice cream, chocolate (anything)…you name it. And before I go any further, I must give credit where credit is due. Whoever created national days for candy and sweets is a genius, because it gives us (don’t pretend you don’t love it all, too) a valid excuse to consume and celebrate each sweet treat. That’s why I have December 15 marked on my calendar: National Cupcake Day!
My friends at Cupcake were eager to help me spread the love and spill a few secrets to creating and decorating the perfect cupcake.
What Makes a Great Cupcake?
If you’re no Martha Stewart in the kitchen (like me), Kristin from Cupcake, has a few suggestions to kick start your baking ambition.
- Start with good flavors. You can do a lot with a basic vanilla or chocolate.
- Don’t mix too much. Here’s an insider tip! Mix the batter just enough to blend the ingredients. Once you can’t see the individual ingredients, your batter is mixed enough. If you over mix the batter, the cupcakes will be really dense instead of light and airy.
- Use the tap test to tell when your cupcakes are done. If you tap the middle of the cupcake, the cake should return to its original form. If the cupcakes are not done, the cake will not bounce back. If the cupcakes are baked too long, it will be harder to depress the cupcake.
Once your cupcakes are done and fully cooled, it’s time to decorate. Any pastry connoisseur knows the first trick to baking and decorating is having the right tools. Kristin recommends picking up a pastry bag and a few different tips to vary your decorating styles. Below are decorating ideas for beginner, intermediate and advanced bakers.
Beginner Cupcake Decorating
Kristin recommends a round or star tip for basic decoration. She decorates the Hot Cocoa and Winter Wonderland cupcakes (pictured below) with a star tip.
Intermediate Cupcake Decorating
A grass or leaf tip can add creative designs to a simple cupcake. Another fun way to enhance your cupcake is to use gel colors to change the look of your frosting. At Cupcake, they decorate the Poinsettia holiday cupcake with cream cheese frosting using a round tip, plus red and green simple frosting using a leaf tip.
Advanced Cupcake Decorating
Before you decorate, use an apple corer or a small melon ball spoon to core your cupcakes and fill them with frosting, mousse or syrup. Our friends at Cupcake soak the Hot Cocoa cupcake with mint and fill it with chocolate ganache. They fill the Frosty cupcake with raspberry jam (yum!).
Now go on and get your bake on! Or, visit Cupcake and leave it to the professionals (we won’t judge).
To celebrate National Cupcake Day, Cupcake is offering a Buy Any 3 Cupcakes, Get A Trademark Cupcake FREE deal at the MOA location. Don’t miss out this opportunity to celebrate cupcakes and, if nothing else, create an amazing #NationalCupcakeDay on Instagram.