August 11, 2009

First Cupcake Venture

Thanks to dear2, my blog is increasingly getting more visitor hits after he introduced several of his friends to my blog. :) I was overwhelmed when one of his good friend, Yan Li wanted to show me support by asking if I would like to bake a birthday cake for her son's first month celebration. When I heard that, I was like.....huh... she's making such a rash decision! :P

Well, I think she was being too kind and overly supportive! LOL.. Dear2 and I knew I'll definitely not be able to cope with such a BIG project. All along, I've only been baking cakes for my friends and family. I've never dare to consider selling cakes yet (except for cookies which I'm more comfortable at) even though I've dream of it. hehe...Eventually, Yan Li asked if I'll then like to make some cupcakes for her guests.

After much consideration and with dear2's support, I finally decided to give it a go. (He said if nobody eat he will finish all!) :D I knew I should be more confident, but to really bake and sell is a different thing altogether.

Weeks before the event, I already started doing 'intensive research'. I test baked a few recipes (vanilla and chocolate flavour) to find the best ones... blog-hop here and there... to get inspiration on the type of of buttercream and icings. Have also emailed Ovenhaven and Happy Mrs Kwok for their advice. Really thanks so much for their replies and guidance! :)These were some of my testings and playing around with royal icing. Having not done any proper courses on cake decoration, I just have to make do with simple designs. I tried this baby nib and smiley bird design but I found it too heavily loaded with buttercream and I wasn't able to get it frosted professionally. The idea comes from here. I learnt how to pipe this cute baby booties from here. Actual day arrived!
I spent the entire evening baking 40 cupcakes in three batches and by the time it was done, it was already past 8pm. Mum was forever right. I should started the cupcakes much earlier. (I wanted the cupcakes to be fresher so I thought the later I started it would be the better).

These were the final products.. :) sunflower cupcakes - chocolate butter cupcake with vanilla cream (tinted with orange colour) and chocolate chips. This was the easiest design. The piping wasn't good because somehow some cookie bits got stuck inside the nozzle so the entire pattern could not be piped out properly. :(

This should be the most delicious! Chocolate cupcakes with chocolate ganache and the letterings were written using royal icing.The blue patches were supposed to be foot prints but the icings were a tad too stiff so I had problem making dots for the toes so I just leave the patches as it was. :P

butterfly cupcakes (vanilla flavour) - I like this too. I sliced the top of the cupcake to leave a hollow depression, filled it with vanilla cream and cookie chunks, and placed the sliced sponge cake (split into half) on top to create a butterfly design.

Baby Booties! Vanilla cupcake with tnted buttercream, decorated with piped baby booties and sprinkles of colourful stars. As you can see, the booties were not very nicely done. The royal icing turned hard (should have covered with damp cloth or plastic wrap) and my hands ached after I finished with the piping.
When everything was done, it was already 4am in the morning! Just in time to handover next morning. :)
I still have not heard from the host the verdict but a few who went to the celebration said the cupcakes were delicious. :) I do hope the guest enjoyed the cupcakes and also apologize for the 'not so neat and professionally done' frostings/decorations.
Thanks Yan Li for giving me the opportunity! This little venture made me realised that yes, I do have a passion in baking, it's not a 3-minute passion only. I don't feel tired from working on the cupcakes even till the wee hours (of course I will feel tired but you just won't want to give up) and I don't feel bored having to try out so many recipes and done so much cleaning and washing till my hands became dry.
I don't think I'll be doing any cupcke venture for now but I'm now beginning to focus on baking a certain item so that I can improve/perfect my skills at it instead of merely doing everything but aren't able to bake something I'm really good at. For a start, I'm working on buttercakes, kinda of working through wat I've learnt in my baking class at Creative Culinaire. Even though I don't really like butter cakes, this is the most basic that I think I should be able to bake without failing, as i failed in some recipes during my trial and errors.
Wish me luck then and Happy Baking! :)


Small Small Baker said...

All these cupcakes look great for a first-timer. Well done, Aimei!

I wouldn't have the courage to do this. I'm bad at decorating. But I do dream to do this one day. May I know what buttercream recipe did you use? Is it good?

Anonymous said...

Great job, Aimei! The lil booties look so cute :) I'm glad to hear it went well!

sherlyn said...

I think you have done a great job. Its a tough one thou, work till 4am .... I especially like the booties and the bib.
And when I will keep an eye on your butter cakes ... cos my kids love sara lee. I hope you can find a low fat one so that I also can enjoy it. :)

Rei said...

Great job! I love the booties.

Skinnymum said...

congrats for taking the first step ... of showing the world your talent in baking.

Angie said...

I have to agree with your other readers -> nice work with the booties! Your mention of baking classes makes me wonder if there are any in my area. Probably very expensive though :/

Dawn said...

the booties are really cute!

Missy said...

i love the lil booties! so cute and sweet! good work keep it up!

Aimei said...

SSB, I adaptd the buttercream recipe from various sources - joyofbaking, my own muffin book and other cake making recources. Till now I still don think my recipe taste nice. Overly sweet. hee... i'll let u know if I have found a good one. :)

Thanks Ovenhaven! Really thanks for your advice. :)

Sherlyn, a lower fat version would be the vanilla yoghurt muffin. You can try that.

Thanks Rei, Skinnymum, Dawn and Missy! I don't consider myself talented lah, just keep trying. :P

Hi Angie! Yea I guess these courses can be quite expensive, especially especially if you are attending different classes at a time.

sherlyn said...

vanilla yogurt cupcake ... okie :)

twinkie said...

Hi Aimei, ur blog entry date went haywired? cute cupcakes! :D

Aimei said...

Hi Twinkle, Thanks for telling me! I have n idea what went wrong. I'd just change it to the date I received the first comment, cos I can't remember when I posted it. :P

Yanli said...

Hey, this is Yanli!! And yes, the cupcakes were wonderful~~

They were so good that I have to hide some away in the fridge so that late comers can have a try too. Guests especially love the choc with choc ganache and also the one with baby booties. Yummy yummy yummy~~ The choc cupcake tastes better as it remained moist and soft even after being in the fridge for some time. The plain one is a tad dry but taste just as nice.=)

So inspired by Aimei that I went to buy a mini oven and began my own baking too! Gosh, you are already a master!!

Lotsa love,

PS: So sorry you have to work till so late... I din know... gosh... thank you thank you!!

Aimei said...

Hi Yanli! Thanks for the comments and glad that you and the guest like the cupcakes! Yeah one more baking kaki! :D

Cupcake recipes said...

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