Saturday, 15 August 2009

Anybody Want a Cupcake?

I sit here a very satisfied and slightly hyper being right now. This is because I have spent the afternoon doing nothing but looking at and eating cupcakes. This was CupcakeCampNI, Europe’s first ever CupcakeCamp, (think of a camp as being a conference). Now we on our corner of this rock would usually think of the traditional Bun when someone mentions cupcake, with pink and white sugar icing, and hundreds and thousands poured over the top and maybe if we were lucky you might get a sugared strawberry or lemon jelly sweetie thing on top. But these cupcakes are so far away from the norn iron bun. These are traditional American Cupcakes, complete with Butter cream icing and more alongside muffins in size. They come in all sorts of colours and flavours and when it comes to decoration, the more elaborate the better.

There were so many different flavours, some familiar but with added twists, Strawberry became Strawberries & Cream and Strawberry Cheesecake, Chocolate became everything from Mint Chocolate to triple chocolate to Chilli & Peanut Butter Chocolate! Lemon became Lemon meringue, and you see where I’m going with this. Then there were the non traditionals. Chai Tea, Pina Colada, Mojito, Mickey Finn’s Raspberry Cocktails, Carrot Cake’s decorated with little candy carrots (handmade), these joined the other amazing decorations like miniature chillis, the beach themed cupcakes complete with ocean, beach towel, fishies and beach brolley! There was gold glitter dust, iced flowers with hand carved petals, swirls, beads, jewels, there was even a Nightmare Before Christmas Themed set of cakes which looked so good it was notable that people were afraid to eat one as it would ruin the look.

Moving away from the cakes themselves which I could go on about for days, and I probably will but not here. The day itself was relaxed (from the punters perspective anyway), there was a friendly atmosphere, everyone was chatting about baking techniques, icing techniques, flavourings, and for us cupcake novices we just enjoyed the moment that event organiser Ciarán Madden gave everyone permission to get stuck in and enjoy. I was very glad I’d starved myself before the event. Not that I condone starving yourself of course ;)

My day finished just after the amusing and problematic Demo from Marshmallow Grove owner Sarah Landstreet on how to make Marshmallow Smore Cupcakes (I will definitely be making my own marshmallow in the future!) and the Prize giving that followed. The overall winner of the event was the deserving Chai cupcakes which were not only refreshing, light and spongy; but also had a slight spice to them. It was then I grabbed a Box that I had “acquired” filled it to its brim, collected my free Tshirt and said my goodbyes, hoping to make it home before the sugar crash kicked in. Which I did... just.

I had a great day and the turnout was amazing. I’ve been watching the progress of the event on twitter from its initial announcement till today and I have to say Ciarán has alot to be proud of. I know that from now on there will be alot more cupcakes in my future. But for now here is some of what we were witness to...

1 comment:

  1. wow those cupcakes look gorgeous! xx