I accomplished a goal this Easter – I baked something Easter-themed. Usually at this time of year I look at what everyone else is doing on Pinterest and then resign myself in silent despair to never being as good. Now, however, since my son and I have powered through Nailed It! and Zumbo’s Just Desserts on Netflix, I’ve emerged with a lot more confidence in my baking skills. I think it’s because I’ve now clearly seen that there is a step-by-step process to creating these masterpieces, they don’t just emerge, fully-formed from the mixer.
Most creations are born from a process. (I’ve got over my issues with that word. I realise I love my own process, I just hate having to follow someone else’s.) Do we send our first drafts out there for the world to see? No. We edit and re-write and slash and burn, and do it all over again. Many many times over before anyone gets to see it. We build our works up step by step. Once I could relate that to cake decorating it all became much less scary.
These are my little Easter cupcake chicks.
I used the same recipe I used for Thomas Jefferson, I just had to halve the baking time.
From Zumbo we learned that cakes have to be completely cool before you apply any kind of frosting to them, so once they had been out of the oven for a little while, I put them in the freezer for 10 minutes.
I found a great buttercream recipe that said “take any amount of butter and use double the amount of icing sugar.” I had 80g of butter and since I wanted chocolate butter cream, I used 120g of icing sugar and 40g of cocoa powder. Then I added a little whole milk and mixed it all together. My son said he thought it was a little strong, but since the cake is sweet and marzipan was going on top it was a nice balance.
I used a piping bag to get the buttercream on the cupcakes, and then I rolled out the marzipan (it was already yellow). I used a glass to get the circle shapes and cut out little triangles for the beaks. The eyes were made of little black marzipan balls and I used a knife to cut of the wings.
The ones that I didn’t give away were enjoyed with hot chocolate and games of Cluedo. To be honest I’m feeling a little blue today after completing my short story and submitting it for the contest. I’ll miss having to live in that world. But it does mean I can get back to Anne’s world. Thanks to the awesome person who finished reading it on Kindle Unlimited today. For a moment I thought perhaps Amazon was playing their own little April Fool on me, but I think it’s for real.
I don’t want to go back to the city tomorrow. I just want to stay here and write and bake.