Last December I blogged about the Martha Stewart Show and the “great cake” she was baking. Since then I’ve tuned into the show from time to time, including this week, which was "Cupcake Week."
I'm sometimes out of step with current trends, so I was surprised to find out that cupcakes are currently all the rage. Who knew? Certainly not me!
I only caught the Wednesday episode of Martha’s show this week, and she and her guest Karen Tack were making Corn-on-the-cob Cupcakes.
How adorable are these? They’re decorated with jelly beans and served on corn cob plates, complete with holders. Perfect for a family barbecue or a child’s birthday picnic.
The recipe and decorating instructions are on the Martha Stewart website and in Karen Tack’s cookbook, Hello, Cupcake!: Irresistibly Playful Creations Anyone Can Make.
While I was searching Amazon for cupcake cookbooks—yes, there are plenty of them!—I came across this one—A Baker’s Field Guide to Cupcakes: Deliciously Decorated Crowd Pleasers for Parties and Holidays by Dede Wilson.
This cookbook “. . . brings the user-friendly approach of the [field guide] series to the ever-popular cupcake, with fifteen master batter and frosting recipes on which the sixty cupcakes in the field guide are built. This book features creative, fun ways to decorate cupcakes for a wide range of special occasions and holidays for children and adults, with a beautiful photograph of every cupcake.”
The science nerd in me loves the field guide concept, and the non-baker side of me likes the user-friendly aspect of this cookbook. It’s spiral bound and each recipe has a two-page spread, which means the book will lie flat and all the information for a specific recipe will be at the baker’s fingertips. I especially appreciate being able to create many different kinds of cupcakes from only fifteen recipes. Even I could do this!
But why cupcakes?
According to Wikipedia, New York City’s Magnolia Bakery is credited with starting the cupcake craze.
Several years ago my daughter and I spent two weeks in New York. She was a huge fan of Sex and the City, the TV show that helped popularize the Magnolia Bakery, so we popped in when we visited Greenwich Village. Even after lining up for ten minutes to pay several dollars apiece for cupcakes, I never imagined this was a trend in the making.
Now there are cupcake shops in nearly every major city in North America. You can buy containers for transporting cupcakes and stands for serving them.
You can visit blogs like Cupcakes Take the Cake, devoted to baking and decorating cupcakes. If you're as crafty as this blogger, you can even knit yourself a cupcake. So cute!
Watching Martha Stewart’s show this week reminded me of the cupcakes my grandmother used to make from a yellow cake batter with chocolate icing. They were simple, delicious, and the perfect size for a snack or a lunchtime dessert.
Deliciously simple—maybe that’s the secret to today’s cupcake craze. What do you think?
Talk to you later,