I got lots of book tokens for my birthday back in February and I just had to spend them on a new cook book or three. I was browsing the shelves in my local book shop and came across the book called Hello Cupcake The picture on the cover really caught my eye and after a quick flick through it went in my basket. When I got home I settled down on the sofa for a proper read and there are so many wonderful ideas in the book. There is an amazing idea for a tower of cupcakes like a circus complete with clowns, lions and elephants which I would love to try. In the end I settled on attempting to make some little doggy cupcakes. For my first attempt I think they came out pretty well and I was quite impressed with them. My little nephew thought they were amazing which was high praise indeed.
There are some recipes in the book but it is more focused on ideas for decorating the cakes. The book is an American book and some of the ingredients they suggest may be a bit difficult to find but I think that it would be quite easy to find substitutes for most things.
This is the list of ingredients that is listed in the book for these cakes. This is to make 6 cakes.
- 6 standard cupcakes
- 6 mini cupcakes
- 1 can vanilla frosting
- brown, black and yellow food colouring
- 1 cup of dark chocolate frosting
- 12 mini marshmallows
- 1 tablespoon pink decorating sugar
- 12 dark chocolate covered sunflower seeds
- 4 cinnamon red hots
- licorice laces
This is what I used instead which I found worked really well:
- 6 standard cupcakes
- 6 mini cupcakes
- butter icing coloured cream, grey and a yellowy golden colour
- mini marshmallows
- a small amount of fondant icing coloured black Break off tiny pieces and roll into balls to make the eyes and nose tip.
- pink caster sugar - this is made by placing some caster sugar in a small freezer bag and adding a tiny amount of pink food colouring. Rub the bag between you hands to colour the sugar.
- a small amount of fondant icing coloured pink. Roll this out and cut out small tongue shapes for the cakes.
In order to ice the cakes you will need disposable icing bags. If you don't have these then you can use freezer/ziplock bags. If you use these instead then you will need to reinforce on corner of the bag with several layers of sticky tape. I had disposable icing bags so used this. You will need one for each colour. If you just want to make cakes of one colour then this will save on the bags.
Spoon the butter icing into the icing bag. Pinch the corner flat and the cut a small M shap in the corner. First make the head. Pipe a small dot of icing just below the middle of a small cupcake. Place a marshmallow pointed side up onto the frosting to make the muzzle. Pipe 2 small dots on opposite sides near the top of the cake. Cut a mashmallow in half and dip the cut side in the pink caster sugar. Attach to the top of the cake to make the ears. Pipe several lines of frosting to cover the rest of the marshmallows to make fluffy ears. Then starting at one ear, pipe 1.5cm strokes of icing around the edge of the cupcake and around up to the other ear, pulling the frosing away from the centre. Next start at the top of the head and pipe tufts of icing between the ears. Then cover the marshmallow nose by starting at the top of the nose and covering the sides. Pipe smaller lines on the front of the marshmallow to cover the nose. When this is done attach two small black balls of fondant icing to make the eyes and another one on the end of the nose. Then attach a pink fondant tongue under the nose.
To make the body of the dog, take a standard cupcake and icing of the same colour as the head. Start piping about 1.5 cm in from the edge of the cake and pull out to the edge. Work aound the whole of the cake. Continue building rows on the icing until the whole cake is covered. Turn the decorated head on its side and place on the body.