Monday, April 25, 2011

Easter Cupcakes

Hope everyone had a relaxing Easter filled with good food, a loving family, and of course delicious desserts. At my Grandmother's house there were eight different pies, homemade sticky buns, fresh banana bread, and of course cupcakes. It doesn't get much better than that.
I made two different types of cupcake for this holiday. One batch was a simple white wedding cake (white cake and yellow cake are very similar, most times the only difference being the addition of egg yolks for yellow cake) recipe, and the other was a German chocolate. Many people only think of German chocolate as a heavy rich cake with coconut, pecan icing while in reality the cake itself is quite light and has more of a milk chocolate flavor. I am not a big fan of chocolate myself so this is one of my favorites!
I then made a simple cream cheese icing, which I used for both flavors of cupcake. The trick to a really wonderful cream cheese icing is to not make it SO sweet. Let the cream cheese flavor be the star. Sickening sweet icing is a major turn off for me, as I feel the cake should be the main flavor.
The white cupcakes I used to create Easter flowers, using mini marsh mellows and colored sugar (which I dyed myself to save money. Simply use granulate white sugar and add food coloring gel. The gel works best because it does not moisten the sugar and will keep the granules from forming clumps).  I also used colored lickerish for the centers of the flowers.
To start, grab a pair of kitchen sheers (or clean scissors) and cut mini marsh mellows on the diagonal. Then dip sticky side into colored sugar. Begin around the outside of the cupcake, right above the paper liner, and make a complete row around the edge. Then continue the process this time staggering the next layer of halved mini marsh mellows. Continue in a circular pattern, once you reach the center cut a small slice of a contrasting colored lickerish stick and place it in the center. Ta Da....beautiful, fun, and unique Easter flowers (also great for Mother's Day coming up!)

Easter Cupcakes

The other batch of German chocolate cupcakes was decorated in a more traditional Easter fashion. I divided the cream cheese icing into three color (purple, yellow, and left some white). I used a round number 5 piping tip for the yellow spikes (looks kind of like peeps), and then the purple is simply spread using a knife and then sprinkled with multicolored sugar (basically the left-overs from my flowers). Finally the white icing was also spread with a knife and then green colored coconut was sprinkled on top to look like grass, and then topped off with a malted milk egg. These were very simple and less time consuming than the flowers.  

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