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Sunday, 8 July 2012

Cupcakes Decoration Parties Unlimited - Four Basic Recipes, Tips & Templates...

There is no limit to the flavour combinations you can produce from 2 basic cupcake & frosting recipes

Cupcakes are always in, but in the past few years they have taken centre stage. From Cupcake towers - which have become very trendy in weddings, baby showers, and even in dinner parties - to cupcake buffets, who doesn't like to munch on a cute little piece of succulence?! Even cupcake decoration has become a favourite activity among children and grown ups alike. The next time you are planning a kids birthday party, why not include cupcake decoration as an activity? The kids can decorate the cupcakes as they like, and if these cupcakes are placed in nice looking boxes, the kids can take them back home to share with their families. What fun!

There are a million recipes for making cupcakes, and you can flavour them to just about any flavour under the sun. Most cake recipes can be made in cupcakes instead of a whole cake. When frosted and dressed with chocolate shavings, confections, sprinkles...etc they will look gorgeous. Then place them on different height cake stands on the desserts buffet and you will have a really delicious and fab looking buffet table. You can even decorate the cupcakes to the theme of the party and add that feel to the whole event. Cupcakes are also much easier to decorate than cakes, so don't be worried about not making it lol.

Simply frosted and dressed with sprinkles and confections, cupcakes will look stunning no matter what you do.
They scream: Bite me!
In this post, I want to share with you four basic recipes, that will allow you to create many varieties of flavour combinations, colour contrasts, and tips on colouring cupcakes and frostings, basic decorations, and how to carry out a cupcake decorating kids' party. These recipes are the best loved flavours that are crowd pleasers, as in a party you would want to minimise the fuss and please all the kids. You can find more recipes for less basic cupcake flavours under the Cakes & Cupcakes label on the right. And if you wish to go more in depth and learn how to create cupcake flavour concepts and carry them out from scratch, then I would recommend you join my 'All About Cakes & Cupcakes' course where you will get to learn it all.

It is Summer break, and lots of birthdays are taking place, we all want a good nice activity that the kids will enjoy together during the break. So send those invites out, set the mood, and throw this really fun, super easy get together...


The Recipes

Basic Vanilla Cupcakes 
Best Loved Vanilla Cupcake with
Vanilla Buttercream frosting
This is a basic Vanilla Cupcake recipe which is easy to prepare, and still tastes delicious – Top with your choice of frosting (recipes below or your preferred frosting) then sprinkle with chocolate shavings, or sprinkles for a special treat. The possibilities are endless.

Makes 12 2 eggs
125g butter, softened
125g caster sugar
125g self-raising flour, sifted
1 ½ tsp vanilla essence


To Make the Cupcakes Preheat your oven to 350F/180C. Line 12 muffin wholes with baking paper cups and set aside.

Pour all the ingredients into a large bowl and mix with an electric mixer on medium speed until all the ingredients are well incorporated and the batter is smooth.

Divide the mixture into the lined 12 muffin wholes (fill each ¾ full). Bake for 15-18 minutes or until lightly browned and toothpick inserted at the centre comes out clean. Remove from oven and let them set in the pan for 3 minutes. Turn on a wire rack and cool completely before spreading with cream.

Cool completely before attempting to frost or decorate.


Basic Chocolate Cupcakes 
This is a basic chocolate Cupcake recipe which is easy to prepare, and will please chocolate lovers – Top with your choice of frosting (recipes below) then sprinkle with chocolate shavings, or sprinkles for a special treat. The possibilities are endless.

Makes 12 2 eggs
125g butter, softened
125g caster sugar
95g self-raising flour, sifted
30g Unsweetened Cocoa Powder, sifted
1 tsp vanilla essence

To Make the Cupcakes Preheat your oven to 350F/180C. Line 12 muffin wholes with baking paper cups and set aside.


Pour all the ingredients into a large bowl and mix with an electric mixer on medium speed until the ingredients are well incorporated and the batter is smooth.

Divide the mixture into the lined 12 muffin wholes (fill each ¾ full). Bake for 15-18 minutes or until lightly browned and toothpick inserted at the centre comes out clean. Remove from oven and let them set in the pan for 3 minutes. Turn on a wire rack and cool completely before spreading with cream.

Cool completely before attempting to frost or decorate.


Best Loved Super Delicious
Buttercream Frosting
Vanilla Buttercream Frosting 
This is the most basic buttercream-frosting recipe. Don’t let its simplicity fool you as it is super delicious! Simply spread the buttercream over the top of the cupcake using a small offset spatula then top with the desired garnish (suggestions in tips below) or place the buttercream in a piping bag with a large tip, and pipe swirls over the cupcake and top with desired garnish for a special treat.

Makes ½ Kg Frosting 250g butter, softened
250g icing sugar, sifted
1 satchet powdered Vanilla Essence


To Make Buttercream Place all the ingredients in a large bowl mix using an electric mixer on low speed until well incorporated. Once incorporated turn speed up to max and beat for 2 minutes. Buttercream is now ready for use.


Any Chocolate lover will appreciate
Fudge. Combined with the tanginess of fresh
berries, that is just Divine!
Chocolate Fudge Frosting 
Chocolate lovers will tell you a chocolate fudge frosting is one of the best chocolate flavoured frostings. This is an easy to make chocolate fudge frosting that will always win the hearts of your guests.

Simply spread the Chocolate fudge frosting over the top of the cupcake using a small offset spatula then top with the desired garnish (suggestions in tips)or place the frosting in a piping bag with a large tip, and pipe swirls over the cupcake and top with desired garnish for a special treat.


Makes enough to frost 12 cupcakes 50g butter, softened
30g unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
350g icing sugar, sifted
4 tbsp Milk
¼ tsp ground cinnamon


To Make Frosting Melt the butter in a small saucepan, add the cocoa powder and stir to incorporate. Cook over low heat for 30 seconds, until the mixture is smooth. Remove from heat.

Gradually stir in the icing sugar and milk, stir until smooth. Add the cinnamon and return the frosting to cook over low heat for 1 minute, continuously stirring. When the consistency is glossy pouring consistency, remove from heat.

Dip the tops of the cupcakes in this frosting while it’s hot for a glossy finish; double dip for a thicker layer. Otherwise, spread over the cupcakes once the frosting had cooled and became spreadable (if the icing is still runny after cooled add a little icing sugar to reach spreadable consistency. 

Chocolate shavings and chocolate balls are the simplest garnish for cupcakes.
Not only do they make it look mouthwatering, but the cupcakes will taste very chocolatey
The Tips 
Cupcake Garnish Options 
  • Lemon, Orange or Lime zest 
  • Candied fruits 
  • Chocolate shavings (dark, milk or white) 
  • Chocolate Sprinkles 
  • Coloured Sprinkles 
  • Mini M&M’s 
  • Mini gummies 
  • Sliced/ Chopped Fresh Berries (Strawberries, Blueberries, Raspberries...) 
  • Icing sugar for dusting over chocolate frosting 
  • Cocoa Powder for dusting over vanilla frosting 

Flavour Variations for cupcakes - or adding another layer of flavour Try incorporating zests, chocolate pieces, finely chopped candied fruits or dried fruits, herbs such as lavender, basil or rosemary.... to the cake batter before baking. These small additions can completely change the flavour of the cupcakes, and make them more interesting than the basic plain vanilla or chocolate.

Stud the frosting with these chocolate gems, you can even go for theme colours
A rainbow of chocolate is every child's dream (and mine lol)

To Colour Vanilla Frosting Simply add a drop of colour (gel food colours work best) into the frosting and stir to incorporate until no streaking is visible and the colour appears uniform. Just note that a drop of colour goes a long way. You can add more colour, a drop at a time, to achieve the desired shade.
Buttercream is perfect to use for piping intricate details over cakes and cupcakes. Place it in a piping bag with the desired tip, and pipe the details you desire. This takes the look of the cupcake to a whole new dimension. 


Fondant or Marzipan Cutouts
Use Fondant or Marzipan Cutouts to decorate Frosted Cupcakes
Fondant and Marzipan can be found in large supermarkets by the baking section. These are super easy to work with. Cut small pieces at a time in order for the paste not to dry out. Dust the work surface lightly with equal parts of corn starch and icing sugar to avoid sticking, then roll out the piece of marzipan or fondant. Use small cookie cutters to cut out shapes and use these shapes for decorating the frosted cupcakes. You can leave the cutouts in a clean dry and cool place, to dry out overnight. This way they stiffen up which allows them to hold shape.

One of the best and easiest way to colour sugar cutouts, is by brushing them with powder food colour. You can even have them sparkle by brushing some luster dust and edible sparkle pigments.
Otherwise, just follow the instructions in this link for how to colour fondant.





A Cupcake Decoration Party

Offer the kids a rainbow of colours and flavours and tell them to be creative
Watch what they come up with, you will be amazed how talented these little ones are :)

The best thing about kids is that they are really easy to please. They will be happy with just about anything. It is the grown ups who create most of the fuss. For the kids, a table full of baked and frosted cupcakes with numerous decoration options - from sprinkles, to shavings to buttons and cutouts - they are already in heaven. Have you heard the expression "a kid in a candy store"? This is exactly what we are creating. A candy store feel for the kids. Just place varieties of confections, cutouts, shavings, sprinkles, even cornflakes and colourful cereals, dried fruits...etc in separate bowls, cups or jars and lay them out on a long table or two joint tables, creating the buffet effect. I always recommend you choose see through unbreakable material such as plastic or acrylic. This way you won't risk breakage and the kids getting hurt, but the containers are see through which is easier for the children.
For the very young it is better to frost the cupcakes
 yourself ready for toppers which the kids
will add
You want to have baked and completely cooled the cupcakes. Lay them out on 2 trays, placing each tray at each end of the table. For younger children it is better to frost the cupcakes yourself and have them ready for toppers. But with older children, place frosting in piping bags, and have them frost the cakes as they please. This will be fun for them, and allows them more creativity as they might want to mix frostings...etc.
Just make sure to keep everything cool right up to the point where they are about to start the decorating. This way the frosting won't become over soft, nor will it go bad.

To make this activity more interesting you can turn it into a competition of who decorates more fastest, or who creates the most original theme, or who can tell a story with cupcakes without saying anything.....? there is a million things to compete for lol
You can even play freeze with cupcake decorating! The kids can decorate as long as the music is playing, but they have to freeze as soon as the music stops, anyone who moves is out... and so on.

Trust me, these parties are so much fun. You don't need a birthday to hold a party like this one. You can arrange this for the kids any afternoon, invite their friends, cousins, neighbours...etc and just simply make them happy. For no reason other than making them happy :)


Candy Land Themed Party - My Absolute Favourite
This activity can work very well for the Candy Land Party Theme I posted a few years back. This is one of my all time favourite party themes for kids and grown ups. Check it out and maybe you too would like to have one of these delicious fun parties. Back then, I had even created some templates for this party theme, from invitations to party signs... etc.


Cutouts and Confection buttons : the easiest way to decorate a cupcake

I hope all of this gives you inspiration, and that it helps you organise and throw a fabulous talk of the town party. I know summer can be a bit hectic and we all could use a bit of unconditional fun. Paired with deliciousness, this is just purely irresistible!
Hope you enjoyed this post, and that I will hear from you so don't forget to leave me a comment before you go :) Come back again soon for more and keep an eye on 
Ramadan Special: Daily Recipes



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Happy Baking & Decorating
Don't forget to keep your life delicious y'all ;)



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