One of the kids in the family suggested that I pick up a copy of "Hello, Cupcake!". After looking at the cover and thumbing through the book I of course added it to the shopping cart. I gained ten pounds walking to the check-out register just thinking about all the cool cupcakes I would be making... and eating!
I haven't actually tried any of them yet, but others in the family have been having fun making some of the whimsical cupcakes. You can make your own cupcakes however you'd like but they give some recipe variations toward the back of the book that not only sound yummy, but per the authors, they're easier to decorate. There are a couple of pages of store-bought mix additions and changes to allow for firmer and more consistent cupcake. They also include 'from scratch' cupcake recipes.
What makes the book outstanding though are all the fun looks they've achieved. They look easy, although I've been told that you kind of have to get the hang of it to make something close to the photos in the book. Nothing major, all were happy with their end products... and have plans to make more.
There's an excellent how-to section at the front that shows how to decorate. The book is by Karen Tack & Alan Richardson. They did a great job of laying it out so that it's easy to follow with no surprises. The authors share a lot of tips and tricks that will help with more than just decorating cupcakes. As they say on the cover - no baking skills or fancy equipment required!
I've noticed that there is at least one follow-up book with more cupcake creations. Depending on how I manage with the cupcakes in this book I may be tempted to pick up another. Halloween and Thanksgiving are right around the corner and I'm going to make some werewolves and pumpkins!
Some of the creations include:
Corn on the Cob (made with jelly beans, fruit chews and decorating sugars)
Spaghetti and Meatballs (made with hazelnut chocolates, strawberry preserves and other treats)
Butterflies, alligators, clowns, party princesses, a circus of animals, sunflowers, Easter eggs, a garden of veggies, a family tree, an American flag, bugs, and Halloween howlers...
There are all kinds of party animals, too. Westies and other dogs, pandas, fish bowls, penguins and more. There's something for almost every special occasion from baby showers to weddings and April Fools Day.
I bought the book on sale at Home Goods for $10.99. I haven't seen it that low anywhere else and I bought the last copy in the north Atlanta store... I'm sure if you check on-line you'll find a bargain. If you like cupcakes, this is a must-have for your cookbook collection.
Houghton Mifflin Publisher
by Karen Tack and Alan Richardson
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