Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Happy Earth Day!

I'll admit it, I'm not normally one of those people who "celebrate" Earth Day. We live on Earth...yay? However, when I saw an idea for Earth Day cupcakes, I knew I had to do something.
I got the idea for the cupcakes from Robin at Bird on a Cake. My version is slightly different, and who wants to be a copy cat anyway? 

Super simple ingredients: 
- White Cake Mix
-Blue and green food coloring 
-White icing 

And yes, the kind of icing you use is important. We'll get to that later. 

First, make your batter just like normal, then divide it into two separate bowls. I used clear glass bowls so I could see exactly what color I was getting once I added the food coloring. Blue will be for the ocean, and green for the land!

Next, add blue food coloring to one bowl and green to the other. It will take A LOT of color. I didn't know how much to add, so I did a little at a time until I got the colors I wanted.

Cool, huh? I wonder if I could make tie-dyed cupcakes...

Also, I added equal parts of batter to each bowl, but in hindsight I would've added a little more to the blue bowl. You know, since the earth is mostly water and all. 

Next is the fun part: Get a spoon for each bowl of cake batter, and scoop the batter, alternating colors, into the cupcake tin. The colors will swirl to make the Earth pattern! 
Unbaked batter
Bake according to the directions on the box, and when they're done they should look something like this:
It's the Earth! 
I think they looked super cool, and I love the way they turned out. I like the ones with the little "islands" too.

My impatience got the better of me. 
Important: Before you put the icing on, they need to cool completely. If not, the icing will slide right off into a melty, sugary puddle. I'm super impatient, so I stuck mine in the freezer for a few minutes.

Here's where I veered from the Bird On A Cake recipe. In that blog, she said to cut off the tops of the cupcakes, use a heart shaped cookie cutter to cut out a heard in the middle of the cupcake, and then fill it with pink icing and put the top back on. Great idea in theory, but it was just not happening. I could see it  going very wrong.

So, instead I had the bright idea to draw on clouds with some white squeeze-tip icing. Another great idea in theory, but the icing I got was way too runny, and the clouds just slid off the top. Super sad.

Finally, as a better alternative to the alternative, I got some Betty Crocker Whipped vanilla icing (thanks to my fabulous boyfriend who happened to be running by the grocery store) and made "clouds" with that instead. It wasn't my exact idea of drawing them on, but it still works. These clouds are just really fluffy!

See? Fluffy clouds.

Despite the icing fiasco, they turned out beautifully! I kind of expected them to turn everyone's mouth blue from the coloring, but it never really happened (darn).  I'd definitely make these again, for next Earth Day I guess! 

Looks like Europe!  
Oh, and Special Thanks to Justin for being my hand model. Fine job, Sir.

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