(picture from the salty cod)
what's more patriotic and american than apple pie? the answer is simple: cupcakes.
cupcakes came about in the 1800's in america, making them another great american invention. the name comes both from the small proportions--the original ones were baked in earthenware cups and such--and from their proportions, measured in cups. the original cupcake recipe is 1 cup butter, 2 cups sugar, 3 cups flour, 4 eggs. and, this was a big switch from weighing ingredients to measuring them by volume, using the anglo-american 'cup' instead of the metric system. this switch made them easier for the everyman (well, everywoman really) to make, as did the cupcake's diminutive size, because big cakes often took a really long time to cook over a hearth and often burned, but those problems were reduced with cupcakes. (thanks to food timeline and cupcakes take the cake for the history!)
alright, enough with the history lesson, let's get to the baked goods! i made some patriotic cupcakes for the fourth of july (which i fully realize was a good two weeks ago). first, i made some delicious red velvet cake cupcakes (yes, from a mix), and piped on some (canned) cream cheese frosting, and topped with blue sugar for a patriotic flair--red cake, white frosting, and blue sugar!
then, i made some red, white, and blue cupcakes--the batter itself was red, white, and blue! i divided the white cake batter (again, mine's from a box) and dyed one part red and one part blue (BIG NEWS: i got wilton gel colors! so now my stuff will be nice and bright, not like the weak colors i had on my cupcake burgers). so, i saw this on chica and jo and knew i had to make them. only mine weren't as swirl-y as chica and jo's, but they still looked awesome. and the patriotic cupcake wrappers didn't hurt...
and i frosted mine with (canned) chocolate cream cheese frosting, because i have a penchant for chocolate. i wanted to pipe it on and make it look all spiffy... but after i piped a few, the frosting started melting and sliding off. so after i frantically yelled for my mom to come help me, i scraped all the frosting off and just spread it on with a butter knife. but they still needed a little something extra... so i put sparkle sugar on them, and that did it! i love sparkle sugar... that stuff makes anything better.
here are some of the cupcakes, ready to be transported to work. since i made two different kinds of cupcakes, i had a ton left over after our little independence day cookout, and my coworkers were glad for it!
P.S. why no red, white, and blue sprinkles, you ask? because i scoured every wal-mart, target, michael's, market street, tom thumb, kroger, and party city within a 20 minute drive of my house, and there were none to be had! i find that quite odd, but it's alright. my cupcakes turned out cute anyway, even if they would have been cuter with some darned sprinkles!
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