Sunday, November 22, 2009

Cupcakes? At a wedding???

As many of you know, cupcakes are very popular these days. There are cafes specifically dedicated to these small, delectable treats ( in Beverly Hills, CA and in Raleigh, NC just to name two) and even online sellers of cupcakes ( What all of these places have in common is that they have taken the simple cupcake we remember as children and turned it into a culinary taste sensation and a work of art!

The cupcake is the perfect "mini" cake that can be decorated a number of ways: from just a simple swirl of icing and a white chocolate pistole on a red velvet cupcake
or a fondant daisy on a yellow cupcake with a swirl of
buttercream to something much more elaborate.

There are so many events where cupcakes are appropriate: baby showers (think blue, pink and yellow baby booties , footprints or ducks), children's birthdays (little princess crowns, dog or cat faces, baseballs, footballs or soccer balls), adult birthdays (mini martini glasses, the Over the Hill motif, golf balls), bridal showers (motifs from the wedding, monograms, bows, hearts and flowers), etc. Cupcakes are fun and easy to eat and make people smile.

But how does the cupcake fit in at a wedding? Some people would say "they don't" but I think that it really depends on the event. It's an obvious option for a casual wedding, something outdoors where
people aren't dressed to the nines but it can also be for a slightly more elegant wedding as well. You'll want to make sure that you present the cupcakes in a manner which matches the formality of the event. And if people are dressed up, PLEASE make sure that you serve the cupcake on a plate with a fork for each person. Somehow picking up a cupcake with one's hands, peeling away the paper and then stuffing it into one's mouth doesn't quite say "elegant" to me.

This past year I did the cake for two weddings where cupcakes (or tarts) were the main event. One was fairly formal and the other was very casual. Both brides chose to use my white "box" cupcake stand, decorated with ribbon that matched the bride's colors. One bride's colors were rich chocolate browns, deep reds and golds while the other was a very light hearted daisy theme, featuring baby blue and yellow. Here are pictures from both events:

Even with the same stand, you can see that they are very different looks. Each bride wanted a round "cutting cake" for the top. The one on the left featured red velvet with cream cheese filled cupcakes, dark chocolate with raspberry filled cupcakes and pound cake cupcakes. The daisy bride had pound cake cupcakes and tarts---key lime, chocolate mousse and bavarian cream with amarena cherries. Yum!

So really it's up to you whether or not you have cupcakes. They are definitely appropriate for a more casual wedding and can be approriate for a more formal wedding, depending on how they are displayed, decorated and served. But in the end, if you really love them and have to have them, just do it!