How to achieve the perfect cupcake

The humble cupcake seems to have taken the world by storm in recent years. Always a firm favourite in

America, it made its way across the pond a few years back and its popularity doesn’t look set to wane

any time soon.

As with any culinary trend there are the professional bakeries that shine in the cupcake world such as

the world famous Hummingbird Bakery and Ireland’s own Johnnie Cupcakes. Trends like this always

spark a surge in people experimenting and emulating it.

If you’re a budding baker looking to wow your friends and family with the perfect cupcake then follow

our tips to bake your way to cupcake heaven!

• For flat-topped cupcakes that are easy to ice try putting less cake batter into each paper case.

If the recipe says that it makes 12 cupcakes just divide it between 14 or 15 paper cases instead,

ensuring that each one is no more than two thirds full.

• The pointy tops that can appear on your cupcakes are caused by the batter cooking too quickly;

the air in the batter heats up and escapes through the top, causing a peak. Try baking at a lower

temperature; around 150 °C is ideal in most cases. An oven thermometer can help you to set an

accurate temperature.

• There are tons of piping nozzles available on the market, but the only one you really need is the

Wilton 1M sized nozzle and a good quality piping bag and you’ll be able to create a variety of

different effects with buttercream.

• Ensure that your buttercream is at the right consistency. If it is too sloppy and practically slips

out of the piping bag then it won’t hold its shape on top of your cupcakes. If it is too thick it will

be difficult to pipe and will either cause wrist strain, burst the side of your piping bag, or appear 

cracked and broken once it’s on top of your cupcakes.

• The heat from your hands can soften the buttercream in your piping bag so don’t overfill it.

Work with smaller quantities so that it doesn’t have time to react to your body heat.

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