Merry Christmas everyone!!! Who doesn’t love this time of year? Festive decorations, presents, and the perfect excuse to indulge in some special foods and sweets.
This month, I thought that instead of sharing a specific recipe, I would share some Christmas cupcakes that are sure to bring a smile to whoever spies them. Perfect as gifts, or to take to parties or get togethers, you can use your own favourite cupcake recipe and turn them into Christmas treasures.
At first glance, they might look complicated and difficult, but truly, all you need are a few basic tools (rolling pin, pizza cutter, ruler and a selection of cookie cutters) some fondant (rolled icing), food colouring and some store bought embellishments (eg. cachous). The rest is up to your imagination!
The simplest designs are the holly and Christmas tree. For the Christmas tree, all you need is some green coloured buttercream – pipe it using a large circular tip, cut a star out of the rolled fondant, then pop a few cachous around the icing for your baubles. Simple yet effective.
For the holly, use a leaf shaped cutter to cut 3 leaves per cupcake. Use a serrated butter knife to “vein” the leaves, and then roll little berries using red coloured fondant. Arrange on top of your frosted cupcake and boom, there you go.
Other easy do designs are the bauble and gift cupcakes. For the bauble, first ganache the cupcakes so you have a smooth and even finish to the cakes. Cut a round piece of fondant to cover the entire cupcake, then shape a triangular piece for the top. Then pipe your favourite design using ganache or store bought decorating icing. If you are having friends over, how about having the cupcakes already covered with ganache and fondant, and then letting them design their own bauble cupcake. They’ll love it!
For the gift cupcake, ganache and cover the cupcake with fondant, similar to the bauble. Then using another colour, cut strips to cross over the cake. Then make a bow and fix to the top. This can be a little more fiddly, but you can first make the bows, then “stick” them on top of the cakes once you’ve covered them and put the two strips on.
You can also create a show-stopping table centrepiece using a cupcake tower, and dressing it like a tree. Here I’ve used some tinsel to cover the centre of the perspex tower, covered it with some simple mini-cupcakes topped with stars, added in some bauble cupcakes, and gift cupcakes under the tree. Once you’ve made your cupcakes, it won’t take long to assemble, but it creates a great effect.
This Christmas, why not create a gift that money can’t buy, and is individual to you. Happy creating, and I wish all our readers a safe and happy holiday season. See you in 2014!!!