Friday, July 25, 2014

Brighten Up Your Day with Rainbow Cupcakes

Whether you need them for a birthday party, another special occasion or just because, rainbow cupcakes are fun, unique treats that are sure to brighten up any day. At first glance, it's easy to assume that a lot of work is involved in creating these delectable desserts, but it's a lot simpler - and more enjoyable - than you probably think.

What You'll Need

For simplicity's sake, go ahead and buy a package of white cake mix. Stick with a reputable brand to ensure superior quality and taste. You will find great deals on premium white cake mixes at Sweet Treat Supply.

You'll also need white buttercream frosting to act as a base for your rainbow icing. Since you'll be making rainbow patterns, food coloring is an absolute must. Buy a basic pack of primary colors — this one is a great option — and mix them to create additional colors. Tally up how many different colors you'll be using to determine how many mixing bowls and spoons you'll need.

Make sure you have the ingredients you'll need to make the cake batter, and round up your mixing bowls, spoons, rubber spatulas and other essentials. That's it - now it's time to get down to business!

Make Beautiful Rainbow Cupcakes Following These Easy Steps

  1. Prepare the Cake Batter - Follow the instructions on the package of cake mix to prepare the batter.
  2. Divide the Batter - Split the white cake batter as equally as possible into separate, small mixing bowls. It's crucial to keep each batch separate to ensure that your cupcakes look like rainbows and not like a strange mishmash of colors.
  3. Add the Food Coloring - Add two to three drops of the food coloring of your choice into each batch of cake batter. Be sure to use separate spoons as well to keep the colors as bright and vibrant as possible. Mix each batch thoroughly to ensure color uniformity.
  4. Prepare the Cupcake Pan - Place paper liners in the cupcake or muffin pan. Pouring the batter directly into the pan can cause extreme darkening, so don't skip this step.
  5. Pour the Batter - Go down the line pouring one color of cake batter after another to create a layered effect.
  6. Bake the Cupcakes - Follow the cake mix directions to bake your cupcakes to perfection.
  7. Prepare the Frosting - While the cupcakes are in the oven, split the buttercream frosting into three small bowls and use food coloring to dye them different colors. Fill a plastic baggie with all three colors, and cut a hole in one corner of the baggie.
  8. Add the Frosting - After they've cooled sufficiently, squeeze frosting onto each cupcake, and then swirl it around with a fork to create a tie-dye effect.

That's all there is to it! You now have pretty rainbow cupcakes that are just as fun to look at as they are to eat!

Friday, July 18, 2014

Fun Summer Baking Crafts with Your Kids

It’s summer, and you’re probably getting tired of hearing the usual grumbles from the kids. If “I’m hungry” and “I’m bored” are making you crazy, put the two together with these fun baking crafts. They will keep the kids creative and give them something to eat after they’ve worked up an appetite.

Rice Krispie Pops

You don’t need a mold to make these Rice Krispie pops, but kids can decorate them individually and show off their creativity.

What You Need:

Rice Krispie Treats – 2 Pound Treat Sheet (or make your own)
Peanut butter or chocolate confectionary coatings
Small items for decoration: Small candies, chocolate chips, crushed graham cracker crumbs, crushed pretzels, finely chopped nuts and/or shredded coconut
Sucker sticks
Cookie cutters

What You’ll Do:
  1. Shape the Rice Krispie treats using cookie cutters or roll them into ball shapes with your hands.
  2. Insert the sucker sticks into the treats.
  3. Prepare the confectionary coating according to package directions and dip the treats into the coating. Cover the treat completely or just dip it partway. Once the coating dries, the pop can be dipped into another flavor for a unique blend.
  4. Decorate the pop using the decorative items. While the confectionary coating is still wet, roll the pop onto a plate filled with the decorative item or have kids press small candies or chocolate chips into the coating, creating their own designs.

Cupcake “Pies”

Make a kid-friendly sweet treat reminiscent of grandma’s berry pies.

What You Need:

Cake mix
Cupcake cups
Muffin tin
Colored candies, such as M&Ms or Skittles
White or cream-colored frosting
Vanilla sugar
Pastry bag and narrow decorating tip
Frosting knife

What You’ll Do:
  1. Prepare the cupcakes in cupcake cups according to the package directions.
  2. Once cool, spread about one teaspoon of frosting on top of each cupcake.
  3. Press the colored candies into the icing, covering the top of the cupcake.
  4. Finish making the cupcakes look like pies by squeezing frosting around the edge (to make the crust) and in a grid over the candies (to make the lattice).

Ice Cream Cookies

This simple craft is great for toddlers or older kids and won’t melt in the heat.

What You Need:

Nutter Butter cookies
Frosting in a variety of colors
Red candies

What You’ll Do:
  1. Dip half of the Nutter Butter cookies into the frosting. This will look like ice cream, and the other half of the cookie will look like the cone.
  2. Decorate the ice cream with sprinkles.
  3. Place a red candy on top to represent the cherry.
  4. Eat and enjoy!