27 Nov Christmas Cupcake Wreath
If you haven’t discovered pull-apart cupcake cakes yet, you are in for a treat! These “cakes” are actually made up of individual cupcakes. This makes them easy to portion, and less messy and wasteful than large cakes. Perfect for parties! Another benefit of using cupcakes is that you can make almost any shaped cake you desire by simply arranging the cupcakes in different ways. With Christmas around the corner (is it that time already?) I was inspired to make this festive Christmas Cupcake Wreath. It’s made up of 24 cupcakes, so a fab dessert if you are feeding a crowd!
I chose to pipe a rose on each cupcake, but if you’re pressed for time you could even flat ice the wreath with a palette knife. Just be sure to “glue” each cupcake down onto your cake board with a little icing before starting so that they don’t move around. You can find great Christmas sugar decorations at most baking stores for decorating your wreath.
Using a good quality baking powder like Royal Baking Powder means your cupcakes will be light and fluffy every time. Always check the expiry date on your container to make sure your baking powder is fresh!
For the cupcakes:
175g butter, softened
300g castor sugar
5ml vanilla essence
3 large eggs
pinch of salt
10ml Royal Baking Powder
For the icing:
125g white margarine, softened
200g butter, softened
625g icing sugar, sifted
5ml vanilla essence
Green food colouring, preferably gel-based
Red fondant paste
Edible Christmas decorations
- Start by making a red fondant bow. Roll out the red fondant paste to about 1mm thick. Dust your surface with a little cornflour or icing sugar if it becomes sticky. Use a knife to cut out 2 rectangles about 12cm x 5cm. These will form the left and right sides of the bow.
- Apply a thin line of edible glue to one 5cm end of each rectangle. Gently fold the fondant so that the other 5cm end meets. Press gently to glue together. Repeat with the second rectangle. You now have the 2 sides of your bow.
- Gently scrunch up the glued end of each piece to create folds like that of a tied bow. Use a little edible glue to glue the two pieces together at the folded ends.
- Cut out another rectangle, about 6cm x 2,5cm. Use this to wrap around the centre part of the bow where it has been joined. Trim off any excess fondant if necessary. Lastly cut out 2 rectangles, about 10cm x 2cm. Cut out a triangle at each tip to create the strands of the ribbon. Use a little edible glue to stick each strand to the underside of the bow. Allow the bow to dry for at least 2 hours.
- Preheat your oven to 190°C. Line 2 cupcake tins with cupcake liners (preferably green or Christmas themed!).
- Cream together the butter and castor sugar with an electric or stand mixer for 3-4 minutes. Add in the vanilla essence and beat well.
- Add in the eggs, one by one, beating well after each addition.
- Sift the flour, salt and Royal Baking Powder in a bowl and stir to combine.
- Add about a third of the flour mixture to the creamed mixture, beating well. Now add about a third of the milk. Repeat until all the ingredients have been used and you have a smooth, uniform batter.
- Divide the cupcake batter between the 24 cupcake liners, filling each just over half-way. Bake each tray for 15-20 minutes, or until the cupcakes are a light golden brown and an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
- Allow the cupcakes to cool for a few minutes, then remove them and place on a cooling rack to cool completely.
- Meanwhile, make the icing. Beat the white margarine until smooth, then add the butter and beat well. Gradually add in the icing sugar and mix until completely smooth.
- Add in the vanilla essence, and enough green food colouring to achieve a dark green coloured icing. Spoon the mixture into a large piping bag fitted with a closed star nozzle.
- Once the cupcakes have cooled, arrange them in a wreath shape on your serving platter or cake board. I started by making a circle of 8 cupcakes, then placing the remaining 16 around that circle. Stick each cupcake down with a little icing to hold in place.
- Now pipe a rose shape on each cupcake. To do this, place the piping nozzle in the centre of the cupcake and pipe in a spiral motion until you reach the outer edge of the cupcake.
- After all the cupcakes have been iced, gently place your bow in the bottom centre of the wreath. Arrange your remaining decorations on the wreath as desired.