Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Hummingbird Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Icing

I don't want to talk about how I somehow misplaced my camera, yet again.

The first time I ever had hummingbird cake was at my office holiday party the year between college and law school. This was no typical office holiday party, however. The business school I worked for had just built a new building and the holiday party was a really fancy affair. There was a huge buffet with tons of cheese, entire fish, and lots of other fantastic food items that I wish I could remember. There was also a coffee bar with fancy liquors to mix in and a wonderful dessert buffet. The dessert buffet had a number of fancy cakes on it, and I went with the hummingbird because I'd never heard of it and it looked good. Oh, it was.

Fast forward to this weekend, when I was trying to come up with something to bake for the Phi Alpha Delta bake sale, whose proceeds were going to benefit Iowa Legal Aid. The theme of the bake sale was "Spring" because next week is spring break, so I wanted to come up with something fruity. I ended up going with a Martha Stewart recipe for hummingbird cupcakes and attemptws to make the pineapple flower garnish. I found the tutorial here really helpful. It took me hours and hours to get the pineapple to dry, so if I ever make these again, I'll be sure to get the pineapple slices even thinner. Mandolin maybe? I don't have one, but it might be a good investment at this point.

Also, I am am a baking grown-up now, because I finally sucked it up and bought some frosting tips and bags. I bought an Ateco set, consisting of 6 large tips, as I think they'll be best for cupcakes and that's primarily what I make.

These cupcakes were delicious and incredibly moist. I highly recommend them, with or without the pineapple garnish. The garnish was impressive for bake sale purposes and really drew people in, but I'm not sure it was worth destroying an entire pineapple over - especially when the end product is basically inedible.

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