Above is a picture from the first time I used The Cupcake Tower. I took the picture with the levels on the “reverse” side to show you the pre-cut holes that are perfect for cake pops. I didn’t have everything on had to make the pops but I ALWAYS have everything on hand for cupcakes. Always.
I made Orange Cupcakes with Orange-Flavored frosting this time because Orange cake is one of my husband’s favorites. For the icing, I simply used my favorite Vanilla Frosting but substituted Orange Flavoring for the vanilla. If you wanted the frosting to LOOK orange as well as TASTE orange, you’d simply have to add food coloring. I knew I wanted to pipe orange icing around the outsides, so I left the frosting white.
When it comes to cupcakes and cakes, always experiment with different flavors – you can subsitute a flavoring of your choice in place of the vanilla in the cakes and icings for outrageously fun and delicious variety. My youngest daughter, Stephany, once made a cake from scratch and used Maple Flavoring in place of the vanilla. I had cake envy so badly it’s a wonder I didn’t pass out. Then again, I couldn’t pass out because I was too busy shoving it into my face. It was outstanding.
I often use almond extract, lemon extract, and orange extract – but I’m making it a point to branch out even further.
Also, another fun tip. At your local bakery, when you see great looking cupcakes decorated with especially cute decorations, buy quite a few. You can wash and use (and reuse and reuse and reuse…) the decorations. I have an entire drawer full of Disney princesses, movie figurines, butterflies, elves, cartoon characters, and so on. It makes decorating cakes and cupcakes extra fun. I’ve built up a set of tools many bakeries would envy.
The cupcakes in this post feature some adorable characters from Kung Fu Panda. I got these quite a while back but they’re a favorite for decorating with. What can I say, I’m in love with the movie.
Also, frequently check the birthday aisle in your favorite stores. Plastic rings and other trinkets are also fun ways to decorate your cakes and cupcakes.
It just occurred to me, I think I know the main reason I love desserts – from cupcakes to cookies and from pudding to cobblers. It all comes down to getting the most out of life. If you want each day to feel like a party, you have to treat it like a party! For me, baking special things for my family sets the party in motion.
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