It’s a race car.

I have a backlog of entries to post, which is both awesome and crummy at the same time. Why? Because it means I’ve been baking a lot more lately, but now it is difficult to continue my chronological orderliness of this blog.  So from now on I am going out of order, basically choosing which posts I feel like writing based on my mood. Oh yeah.

It’s been a while since I posted a cupcake cake… and we just so happened to have celebrated our co-worker’s birthday with a cake at work. Megan, Bri, and I got together to bake a cake for the infamous Mickey M. (I’m not going to give full names to protect the secret identity of our friend. 🙂 For those who know Mickey, you know why. I’ll leave it at that.)

Mickey is huge into racing cars… so we wanted to create something that reflected his hobby. Actually, there’s a funny story behind all of this. We initially wanted to create a replica of his face in cake, with fondant and all, because he’s got a great expressive face, and he’s always saying, “I crack myself up,” and we wanted to make him laugh. However, plans fell through on that one halfway through the baking process and we ended up with a race car instead. Count ’em… 12 photos ahead.

Chocolate cake batter, mixing away:

Using a measuring cup to pour this cake batter makes it much easier for distribution, especially because of the runny consistency:

Baked and cooling:

Arranged in the shape of a race car: (We got our idea from another race car cupcake cake online, (thank you last minute googling), but I didn’t want to put it up here, because our car is extra special in comparison… and we were missing some key elements. So if you don’t know what it’s supposed to look like, you can’t be too critical, right? That’s what I think and so we shall proceed.

We decided on a green car. Here’s a new technique that I was particularly proud of trying: we covered the cupcakes in a layer of frosting, and then colored sugar to give it a clean, matte finish. Plus the frosting doesn’t melt everywhere. Seems simple, right? Not when you only have white sugar and food coloring! We were able to create our own colored sugar by mixing the two in a ziplock baggie. Good tip for those who don’t have colored sugar just layin’ around.

Since we had to transport this puppy to work, I used a shirt box and made it sturdy with a piece of cardboard wrapped in aluminum foil.

Ah, here’s where the creative part set in. We needed to make a person’s face and wanted it to at least resemble Mickey. People make fun of him for having a big head (he’s an excellent sport, did I mention that?) so we used a Ritz cracker shaped like a snowflake. Yeah, I didn’t have round ones. Don’t ask.

Isn’t it a spitting image of him? Yes, Megan printed this reference page from work, and we were being creepy and using it to ensure a resemblance. Of course, this was when we were supposed to create his face. However, it still came in handy. Check out how spot-on that replica is, you can’t even tell it’s a Ritz! Genius. 😉

So the race car is coming together. This is the basic layout, minus the wheels.

Here we added the wheels:

Here’s the completed cake. We piped “HBM” where the fin was supposed to be. (HBM= Happy Birthday Mickey.) We also dipped the wheels in chocolate ganache for that shiny wheel like look. And added a few accessories made out of red fondant and sprinkles. So creative for a last minute change in plans.

He looks soooo happy to be driving! … in our benchmark cake, the driver had a helmet. But, the Ritz cracker wouldn’t allow for that, it was too big. That, and this is way more representative of how Mickey likes to live life on the edge and not wear a helmet. 😉

Happy Birthday Mickey!


Congratulations to another grad, Cory! He just finished his MBA at ASU, having spent the last two years working full time and going to school. Definitely a celebratory time… and what starts a party better than cupcakes?!

Lauren and Megan and I decided to bring some fun to the party with a playful pal. I used the Swamp Creature idea from the oh-so-famous, NY Times bestseller “Hello Cupcake!”

It’s a great book, with tons of fun ideas. Anyways, we did mister swamp monster, a.k.a. the crocadile…. Using chocolate cupcakes, a little green frosting, and some creativity/improvisation. Let the photo tour begin…

Step 1: Piping a nice “scaly” texture onto each cupcake, in green!

Step 2: Making the teeth out of marshmallow, and the claws (which were supposed to be banana runts, but apparently they are now an endangered candy as M&L tried 4 different stores for them) so we defaulted to some bright yellow fondant that I just happened to have laying around.

Step 3: Assembling the claws! And letting them hangout and marinate with my rice and soymilk in the fridge. Indeed. The spikes were made from fudge covered graham cookies, square shaped. We couldn’t find what the book called for, yet again improvising :).

Step 4: Bringing the monster to life! The eyes were two giant marshmallows and the pupils? Two purple skittles.

Step 5: Complete and photograph. Check him out on his aluminum foil bed, all ready for his close-up 🙂

Side view: Just screams “Happy Graduation,” doesn’t it?

Ah, but it gets better. One of our friends suffered from extreme “croc-alepsy” as he “fell asleep” on his cupcake…. behold the consequences of enjoying a cupcake (and/or party) a bit too much.

All that’s left are the eyes….!