Dottie Dee – Mistakes Along the Way
A cupcake is not what it used to be. They are becoming as gourmet as anything else out there. Gone are the days of buying a box mix and can of icing. I know that when this adventure first started we actually did use a box mix as the base and tinkered and tweaked from there. Since then we’ve found and created our own recipes but somethings just don’t work out the way we planned. I thought I’d share with you some of the misses.
In our fledgling weeks, when we were baking up dozens and dozens of cupcakes to give away to anyone willing to eat a cupcake – trust me, volunteers were never hard to find – we had some interesting experiences:
Lesson One: When using flavour oils moderation is key. Our Sweet Heat cupcake uses cinnamon oil. I’ve used oils before for cooking. Gramma used peppermint oil to make her Christmas Mints. Getting that stuff on your hands and touching your face brought a whole new definition to pain. When we added the cinnamon for a Valentine’s inspired cupcake I kept adding the oil to the batter until I could taste it. Little did I know, or think, that when it baked the flavour would intensify epically. I thought a nice touch to the Sweet Heat would be a Cream Cheese Icing to help balance out the flavour. It was a nice thought but that first batch was like eating an Atomic Fire Ball! I like hot cinnamon but even I had tears in my eyes! The next batch used much less oil and was very good!
Lesson Two: Filling injectors are a nice thought, so are the cupcake corers but for us they just didn’t work. we tried to inject several of our cupcakes with filling and all we got was a thin little streak of filling in the middle. the corers squished the cupcakes or took too much from the middle. you also had to go to the bottom which makes eating them difficult and we want you to eat them with ease and pleasure. It was all a matter of trial and error with heavy focus on the error part. What have we found to get a good dollup of goodness in the middle? A grapefruit spoon! With the pointer tip and serrated edges it gets into the middle, cuts out a nice little pocket that I can then fill with a yummy surprise. Once the cupcake is iced with a nice mound of butter cream you can’t even tell that there is a whole in the cupcake.
Lesson Three: Halving recipes doesn’t always work out right. I’m sure someone out there can explain it fully but for the time lets just go with it fell flat int he middle. We only needed to make a dozen of the mini’s so we thought that we could just divide the recipe straight down the middle and it would be fine. Well that worked, but only for our fruit recipe. our chocolate and vanilla ones were a different story. Now the chocolate were chewy, sticky and shiny like I’d dipped them in oil. They also sank in the middle. The only thing I could think to do with them was toss them out. The vanilla tasted great but fell in the middle too. I did think of something delicious to do with them though. I ended up filling them with fresh cut strawberries and some whipped cream for a nice fresh summery dessert.
I’m sure we’ll have many more flops to come as we continue to create new flavours to tempt you with but here are just a few for now!