I’ve dedicated past month to improving my cupcake skills.
Muffins are nice for grown-ups, but the face of a 6 year old really lights up when they see a pretty cupcake.
After countless tries, I still haven’t been able to produce a passable cream-cheese icing. I suspect it’s either the cream-cheese’s fault, or my expectations from cream-cheese icing are misguided. It keeps turning out too runny, and unfortunately I end up having to make cake-pops with the failed icing, but that’s another story.
Butter-cream icing made with just butter, sugar and milk seems to lack something texture wise. So I finally braved up and tried my hand at making Swiss Meringue Butter-Cream. 10 minutes after my first batch turned into goop, I whipped up another. I really don’t know what changed but the second one turned out great.
So, when a friend ask for cupcakes for a girls-only birthday party for a bunch of first graders, I jumped at the opportunity.
I started by making the cake from “Billy’s Vanilla, Vanilla Cupcakes“.
Even though I followed the instructions to a tee, and I’m sure I didn’t over mix, my cupcake cakes had little peaks. This is no major problem when using piped-icing but it would be kinda hard to decorate these with rolled fondant.
Anyways, I filled these with home-made strawberry jam and made my butter-cream. I whipped the meringue by hand in a double boiler, and continued to add in butter in a stand mixer. I added a cup of fresh strawberries (all mashed up), a drop of “Hot Pink” food-color and half a teaspoon of strawberry extract. I used up more than half my batch but there’s a piping bag full still left in the freezer.
The turned out pretty great if I say so myself.
I had made these a few days ago while watching Fringe (OCD should always be put to good use).
And they ended up on the cupcakes.
I’m quite partial to the green ones..