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Cupcake couture: discover elegant new ways to decorate and display individual-sized delicacies.

Cupcakes evoke such memories. I recall as a child coming home from school many days and finding lovely little cakes topped with pink frosting for me, my brother and sister, and our neighborhood friends. Then there were the ones for special occasions that my mom brought to school for holidays. These included the orange ones with candy corn eyes, noses, and smiles for Halloween and the ones topped with little tinted-green coconut nests holding jelly beans for Easter, as well as many varieties for Valentine's Day and Christmas.

Following that tradition, I in turn made cupcakes for my own daughter during special times. Some that come to mind are small shaggy dogs I created for her birthday. They were baked without liners and completely covered with icing to resemble fuzzy, short-legged pups with dark eyes, smiling mouths, and pink bows between the ears. These were very popular with the children due to the excess buttercream and sugar icing, and probably not so popular with the teachers.

But now it's time for cupcakes to grow up. They aren't just for kids anymore. It's time for the adults to enjoy the fun. So for your next party, try your favorite cake recipe as a cupcake or come up with your very own strawberry cupcakes, small citrus cakes with toasted almonds, or even molten chocolate cupcakes. They make wonderful little individual treats for pick-up as well. And who can resist a taste of childhood?

It is also fun to be creative in ways to display and serve cupcake treats. Stacking different sizes of cake stands with flowers on top allows you to serve several dozen small cakes at a time. For additional attention to detail, accent each cupcake with a collar cut from card stock with scallops or tie a small ribbon around the liner.

Create a trendy display by covering cardboard cake circles in fabric and ribbon. For a five-tier stand, you will need:
2 cardboard circles in each of 5 sizes
 (16-inch, 14-inch, 12-inch, 10-inch,
 and 8-inch)
1/2 yard fabric to cover circles
5 yards (1/2-inch) ribbon to edge
 cardboard circles
4 Styrofoam cylinders (one 4"H x 6"D,
 one 3 1/2"H x 4 1/2"D, and two 4"H x 4"D)
5 yards (1 1/2-inch) ribbon to cover
 Styrofoam cylinders
Hot glue gun and glue

Cut 5 circles of fabric 1 inch larger
than each cardboard circle size. Cut tiny
slits in the fabric around the edge of each
fabric circle to make covering the circle
easier, and glue the fabric around one
round of each size. Glue the other cardboard
circles of each size to the appropriate
circle, and glue the 1/2-inch ribbon
around the edge of each of the five cardboard
circles. Glue the 1 1/2-inch ribbon
around each cylinder. Stack the tower together,
gluing graduating pillars to each
graduating circle, going from largest on
the bottom to the smallest on the top.
Stack with coordinating cupcakes.
COPYRIGHT 2007 Downhome Publications, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2007, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:EASY DOES IT
Author:Roper, Patty
Publication:Mississippi Magazine
Date:May 1, 2007
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