Sunday, March 29, 2009

Post #109: Easy Cupcakes That Look, Well, Not-So-Easy!

Okay, so by now most of you know that I straddle the fence of semi-homemade and homemade. I would never claim to buy store-bought baked goods (well, except for the one very recent exception of the last itsy bitsy Oreo cake that I bought from Kroger's to use for my ice cream demo with much encouragement from my hubby who pleaded with me to please buy the d@mn thing so we could have some quality time together before he left for the motherland, that is, Africa), but I do incorporate store-bought into my recipes that others would like to use, but want them simplified due to time constraints and/or lack of passion for culinary pursuits. Yes, I, too, often use these store bought substitutions in a way that would make Sandra Lee happy, and Foodies shocked.

So when I promised to make cupcakes for our elementary school's Family Fun Night, I was pressed between a rock and a hard place. I had within 24 hours, 48 cupcakes and a cake for 40 to decorate! What to do, what to do? I just did it.

I "Duncan Hines"-ed the cupcakes with my favorite flavor, Devil's Food cake, and frosted one dozen with store-bought Duncan Hines Dark Chocolate Frosting and dusted with cocoa powder. The other dozen my daughter frosted using my favorite ganache recipe sans liquer and added chocolate and candied sprinkles.


From Cupcake Fun



From Cupcake Fun


The trick to mine was simply dressing up the frosting by adding it to a disposable piping bag with a 1M tip and spiraling. Then, I dusted them with cocoa powder.
The trick to my daughter's was to use a ganache frosting to add an easy elegance. Then, she added sprinkles for a fun look.
We both used pretty silver cupcake tins for an added special touch.

The result, not just your typical gaudy, effortless cupcakes from a store bakery, but especially pretty, dainty cupcakes, that were devoured by little, grubby hands after being won in a cake walk.

I even joined the cake walk.


From Cupcake Fun

And when I won after three times playing, I picked one of mine.

Of course, my daughter gloated since her cupcakes went faster than mine, but that is okay, I forgot all about my loss after I got to go on this ride...


From Cupcake Fun
See me up there?

Nothing wrong with acting young or making things easy on yourself!

15 comments:

Mermaid Sweets said...

Those look great and there is nothing wrong with a few shortcuts! The worst is when people end up prefering the store bought stuff!

Christina Kim said...

I am all about getting a little help when you need it. Especially when you have your kids to keep you occupied otherwise! Way to do it Sandra Lee style!

5 Star Foodie said...

Shortcuts a a lifesaver a lot of times :) The cupcakes look yummy!

Cheryl said...

I think those are damn fine looking cupcakes. I love cake mixes and if you doll them up no one can tell! I am making my first big girl cake this week, fingers crossed!

pinkstripes said...

Your cupcakes look fantastic!

Flourchild said...

How fun.. a cake walk! Oh my do those cupcakes look tasty!

Leslie said...

I'm sorry, you had me at chocolate! These look amazingly chocolatey, and I love how you dressed them up. And how fun is that slide?!? I love those things!

Dragana said...

How I miss those elementary family fun activities! Pretty cupcakes - much better than store-bought, and you know how I feel about THAT!

Jennifer said...

I love ganache and cake walks. Did your daughter win anything?

Teanna said...

I totally want to go on that slide! And then eat all of those cupcakes!

Life with Kaishon said...

You really do look so young : ). Delightful! What a fun night! Your cupcakes look scrumptious! I need to make cup cakes soon. Kaish always wants to buy them at the store for $3.99 for 6. Isn't that a crazy price? I always say no.

Ginger said...

You should see my shortcut with cake mixes and cookies!! I think those cupcakes look fantastic. AND I love cake walks...

Carol Peterman said...

Sometimes life is more important than made-from-scratch. You did a great job of dressing up the boxed mix to make it special.

Maria said...

The cupcakes look fabulous!

Cathy said...

Shortcuts are essential for busy moms! Your cupcakes look delicious, and I have no doubt they were gobbled up!