Wednesday, August 10, 2011

kevin's bd party: cupcakes!!!

For Kevin's birthday cake I wanted to make several different kinds of cupcakes so everyone could have their cake of choice! The only problem is I don't really ever make cake from scratch (I just use a box like most Americans!). But this time I wanted to do it right and so I pulled out my go-to cookbook, the Better Homes & Gardens checkered one, and got to it.

I was so excited that I even got up around 6am on Friday to get started!
I made batch #1 - a basic chocolate. They looked a little like mushrooms, but not too bad and they tasted pretty good so I moved on to batch #2 - red velvet (Kevin's fav) and achieved the same results as batch #1.

Batch #3 - carrot... looked perfect.
Now I suspected that batches #1 and #2 maybe weren't good enough after all.
Batch #4 - a basic white and batch #5 - a basic white with a chocolate chip cookie in the center also turned out perfect and so i knew I had to redo batches #1 and #2 as batches #6 & #7.
That's right I made 7 batches of cupcakes and got done around 1pm - just in time to meet some friends for a lunch break.

Why did the first 2 batches not turn out so pretty? I filled the muffin cups too full. Unlike a box mix, these homemade cupcakes weren't rising all pretty and high, but rather spilling over the edges like a mushroom. Turns out that's pretty common so I wasn't doing anything wrong, other than overfilling.

The icing went really well until my last batch, which was the red velvet. After a little trial and error I ended up refrigerating that icing overnight and then whipping it in the morning. It ended up just a little runny, but not too bad (I'll be sure to post tips when I post that recipe). I got all cleaned up around 10pm. So that was about 12 hours of making and icing cupcakes off and all on day.

But they turned out pretty and tasty and I didn't mind the effort at all, especially since it was for Kevin's big party! If you just make one kind at a time then it's really not all that much work, especially now that learned so many things that I can pass on!

Don't they look great?!

I also made these cute little tags with a circle punch. I love tags in cupcakes it really kicks them up a notch!

batch #1/#6

chocolate cake with peanut butter buttercream frosting

batch #3

carrot cake with cream cheese frosting

batch #5

vanilla cake filled with chocolate chip cookies and iced with buttercream frosting
(see here for buttercream recipe)

batch #2/#7

red velvet cake with red velvet frosting

batch #4 (forgot to snap pics!)

white cake with almond buttercream frosting
(see here for buttercream recipe and add 1/2 tsp almond flavoring)

this is how full my fridge was after filling it with all the cupcakes!

Again, it was hard work to make this quantity and variety, but totally worth it for the big birthday party!!!

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