Birthdays and Cupcakes-A A +A
By Artie Sy
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
HELLO dear readers. Was absent for quite a while and really missed you. Today let’s do a little of the busy Mom's shortcuts to a child's birthday cake.
We all know that the cakes these days are really price prohibitive. And it takes all sorts of cutting corners to buy a cake for a birthday bash. Now, short of baking your own cake, it is prudent for us to learn how to cut corners and still come up with a good-looking cake and still not spend too much. How does one do this?
One way to do so would be to buy an un-iced cake from our many bakeshops and thus cut the price. Buy the biggest cake that is reasonably priced and proceed to ice the cake yourself. Then you can also buy plain white cupcakes and dip the cupcakes in a bowl of chocolate icing and sprinkle a little sparkler which you can buy on top of the cupcake. Or you can shave a bit of white chocolate on top of the dark chocolate. Or you can place half a strawberry on top of the dark chocolate icing. Or you can mix white and dark chocolate icing for a marbled effect. By doing the cupcakes and the cake icing yourself you truly have twice the amount of cake you would have if you bought them all.
So let’s presume you want to buy a regular sized chiffon cake and about fifty white cupcakes. Then if you intend to have a children’s party, in school that much cake will surely be more than enough.
Let us again presume that you want to use both white and dark icing, or maybe white and mocha icing, then you have to make white icing and color half of the icing with powdered coffee for the mocha effect. If you don’t feel like dividing the icing into half and have to use two bowls, then mix the coffee powder in one corner of the bowl and just gently mix it into the rest of the icing for the marbled effect. Prepare all of the little toppings you want to decorate the tops with. Have ready sparklers, crushed candy, a small box of raisins both white and dark and maybe some grated coconut and grated cheese.
Now to make the icing.
• 3 egg whites (room temperature)
• 4 cups (approximately 1 lb.) confectioners' sugar
• 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar. Makes two and a half cups
Beat all ingredients at high speed for 7 to 10 minutes. Use immediately. Rebeating will not restore texture.
For use only as non-edible decorations which will not come in direct contact with the cake. Wash hands and utensils thoroughly after making recipe
Here’s another recipe
• 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
• 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
• 2/3 cup boiling water
• 2 egg whiles
• 1 teaspoon vanilla
Combine granulated sugar and cream of tartar in saucepan. Add boiling water and stir until sugar is dissolved. Place saucepan over heat and bring mixture to a boil. Boil rapidly, without stirring, for about 10 minutes or until syrup forms a soft ball in cold water, or until candy thermometer indicates 240 degrees. Remove from heat while testing. Beat egg whites until stiff. Pour hot syrup in fine stream over egg whites, beating constantly with electric mixer until frosting is cool and of proper spreading consistency. Stir in vanilla.
Frost a 2-layer cake to use for cup and whole cake, double the amount of the recipe of make one recipe at a time. If you notice that the icing is thin, simply add a little confectioners’ sugar to the consistency you desire.
When the icing is ready, assemble all the cupcakes and the whole cake. To ice cupcakes, hold the cake o the bottom, put over the icing, twist and pull out, most simple. You can also ask the birthday child to do the decorating, which will make the child so happy. To ice the whole cake, use a table knife and cover the cake with icing, top with your little toppings Ask the birthday child to help you with the toppings. You will find a most helpful assistant.
Finally to the birthday child of the week, we have Kublai Khan my favorite birthday child.
To all readers, BON APPETIT!
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on July 11, 2012.