Monday, August 26, 2013

There's Always Cake...

This has turned out to be an incredibly busy couple of months for me with cake orders almost every weekend.  Our house is permeated with the aroma of cake.  Which is quite nice, actually, because I do love the scent of warm cake baking.

I have been working on recipes, editing photos, mixing endless batches of buttercream and cake batter, and washing practically every piping tip and mixing bowl that I own, over and over, it seems.  My fingers may even be permanently stained from kneading food coloring into fondant.

So this is going to be the "week of cake" on my blog, with a new cake post every day, from today until Friday.

And after the cake...   I have a recipe for homemade English muffins that I can't wait to share with you this weekend.  I think you'll love it.

These cupcakes were for a girl's 9th birthday party at a roller skating rink, and the request was for red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting, a recipe which I have shared with you before, and a batch of white cupcakes with Skittles frosting.  Word of that Starbursts and Skittles Cake that I had done last year had gotten out.

For the Skittles buttercream, I made it exactly like I had done with the Starbursts, by boiling the candy in water to create a syrup, and then whipping it into the buttercream.  The "blue raspberry" Skittles I used created a lovely sky blue color that I thought looked so pretty with the contrasting red velvet cupcakes.

So I played up that color combination with my decorations, decorating the blue frosting with red, pink and purple Skittles.

And the red velvet cupcakes have garnishes of cake cutouts, sparkling sugar and sprinkles in shades of red, pink and blue.

With all the shades of blue, red and white, the two flavors were a perfect match for each other, and so pretty for a girl's party.

Have you ever thought about how cake is such a constant celebratory fixture in our lives?  Styles and trends change, tastes change, and we all get older, but through it all, there's always cake...

One Year Ago:   If Life was a Slow Dance, and Orange Dreamsicle Cream Cake...
Two Years AgoCaprese Salad Appetizers

Skittles Buttercream

To incorporate the flavor and color of the candy into the frosting, then you’ll need to do this step a day in advance, so the syrup has time to cool.  Separate all the candy by color/flavor; I just made one flavor using the "blue raspberry" Skittles.  For a small batch of frosting to frost 12 cupcakes, I only used about 1/4 cup of Skittles.
Place the candy in a saucepan.  Regardless of how much candy you use, add enough water so the candy is covered by about an inch of water.  Bring to a boil over medium heat, then boil over medium low, stirring occasionally, until syrupy and reduced, about 20-30 minutes.  Pour into a glass jar and cool on the kitchen counter overnight.

The next morning, you should see a layer of fat on top of the surface that separates from the syrup as it cools.  Scrape the fat solids off, and pour the syrup through a fine mesh strainer to remove the rest of the solids.  The syrup is now ready to use.

When you make the buttercream, just use the syrup in place of the milk; you can add a little more food coloring if the color isn't deep enough.

If you like, you could even mix some of the chopped candy into the buttercream for a little crunch.

Recipe from Curly Girl Kitchen

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