Last month my husband and I took a cake decorating class. Every Wednesday evening my in laws took care of the kids and we spent two full hours, kid free and knee-deep in sugar. It was fun, though likely more fun for me. I enjoyed learning new skills and being able to put them to use. Hubby went for me…because I said pleeeese. Well I finally was able to put my icing work to good use as yesterday was my Mother In Laws birthday. So gluten-free carnation cupcakes were on our dessert menu!.
These are my favorite cupcakes to make. They are simple and pretty much fool-proof. All you need is the proper tools.
- Baked Cupcakes (I use a box mix – all anyone cares about is the icing anyway)
- Decorators Icing (store-bought or home-made, see recipe below for home-made version)
- Wilton Decorating Bags (piping bags)
- Wilton Tip #2D
- Food Coloring or Wilton Color Gel
- Small Spatula or butter knife
The How To:
Premake your cupcakes and allow them to cool completely. Make your icing and keep it at room temperature. Mix your icing with the colors that you want for your Carnation Cupcakes, the more color you use, the richer color you’ll achieve. Mix until the color is uniform (or not – different shades is cool too). Using the small spatula, spread a thin layer of the icing on top of the cupcake. Don’t worry about what it looks like, no one will see this. You will notice that the icing doesn’t like to stick to the cake…this is normal, and is the nature of working with this icing. You’ll get used to it.
Snip the end off one of your piping bags and place Wilton tip # 2D inside. It’s a big tip so no need to use a coupling. Push the icing all the way into the tip, and give it a squeeze to make sure all the air has escaped.
With the cupcake in one hand or on a hard surface and the piping bag in the other begin squeezing the icing onto the cupcake. Turn your hand a 1/4 turn each time (from 9 o’clock to 12 o’clock) and lift off the cake as your squeezing. If the flower lifts off, squeeze just a little bit more. For the Carnation cupcake you’re going to do this many times. Begin on the outer edge of the cupcake and work your way to the center. Once you’ve covered the whole cupcake, you can go over any spots you may have missed, or add more to build the height of the cupcake.
When you are all done, you’ll have a pretty tray of Carnation cupcakes!
- 1 C Shortening
- 1 Kg (about 4 cups) Icing sugar
- 2-4 tbsp milk
- vanilla or flavor
Cream shortening with electric mixer, add icing sugar slowly. Once all mixed together add your flavor and your milk, one tbsp at a time until you reach desired consistency.