Thursday, February 17, 2011

It's A Cupcake World!

Being asked to create a Cupcake Wedding Tree was no doubt a huge highlight of our new adventure. We felt honored, completely excited and tremendously nervous. Then being asked to create nearly 300 bite-sized desserts for the same day added to our mixing bowl of emotions. 
One Tub...Lotta Love
It wasn't until just a few days before we started baking did feelings of doubt begin to appear in the back of my head...are we ready for this? Can we manage this? 300 people would be trying our products, on the same day, nearly at the same time. I have never felt pressure like this before. Thankful, V had enough confidence in her abilities to slap the doubt out of my mind and tell me to get mixing.
Our wedding menu consisted of 4 different cupcake choices. Mocha (my favorite), Lemon, Milk Chocolate and Classic Vanilla. Each featured a different buttercream. We also prepared a two-layer milk chocolate cake that would adorn the top of the cupcake tree which the bride and groom would cut into. 
The second event was the annual Red Tie Romp. A fundraiser for the Ross Ragland Theater. Our menu for that included our Raspberry White Out Cake (in a miniature version), mini Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Buttercream and a mini Dark Chocolate Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream. I was incredibly excited about this particular cupcake, it would be topped with white buttercream, white sprinkles and finished with a maraschino cherry. Something I wouldn't normally use but I just had a feeling it would look awesome.
We scaled the ingredients (which means measuring our all the ingredients to make mixing quicker and easier) 6 batches of Milk Chocolate, 3 Dark Chocolate and 2 Mocha. 10 Classic Vanilla, 2 Lemon and 2 Red Velvet. Then came the buttercream! 20 pounds of butter, 50 cups of sugar...I was sick of butter and sugar after that! The next day we mixed. I believe I separated 6 dozen eggs...and am proud to say not one drop of yolk fell into those whites. Thankfully, just days before my parents graciously donated an old fridge to our bakery...we definately needed it.
Red Velvet - Cream Cheese Buttercream
The next day we began to bake and our masterpieces began to come together. The huge tubs of batter turned into little bite-sized treats. We fell in love again with our huge convection oven with 8 racks to bake on. It was a nice trade up for the apartment sized oven we were using.
Now...decorating! The best part of the entire Bakery operation. It's like a woman finishing off her outfit with a nice pair of heels or man finishing off his outifit with a nice flex in the mirror. My mother, donated her time and creative abilities for the day. After a power up lunch we tackled the valley of cakes. Most would think that piping on frosting would be the most difficult but actually its the flat frosting that are most challenging. My mom attempted to tackle that as her first decorating duty but after working on one cupcake and not quite getting it right she asked, "Can't I just sprinkle!"
V is a master at flat frosting, I prefer my piped frosting so we make a good team and with my Mom's master sprinkling abilities we were like a 3-person army of decorators.
The Only Way To Eat A Maraschino Cherry
Our system was flawless and the cakes were finished in no time at all. There were several small finishing touches that had to be done day of, but all in all the day ended on a stress free note.
The morning of the events was really quite stress free. I'm generally the one freaking out and running around but whether it was a sugar inducted coma from sampling all the buttercream or maybe we really just pulled this off? The finishing touches took a little longer than expected but even being an hour behind schedule we were both very relaxed....kinda strange. We finished the cupcakes for the theater fundraiser, loaded the car and dropped off our first deliver. We don't have children (yet) but It felt like I imagined it would feel to leave you kids for the first time, of course we wouldn't leave our children in a huge walk in refrigerator, but it was feelings of excitement, joy, relief, fear and sadness.
Lemon Cupcake
Now, off to Grants Pass for the 2 1/2 hour trek, 200 cupcakes packed safely in boxes. V was surprising calm as we drove through the mountains, up and down the hills and around all the corners which surprised me. It could have been her nerves but she would never tell. About 45 minutes away we stopped for a quick lunch break and thought maybe we should check on them...but quickly decided NO, if something happened we would just spend the next 45 minutes beating ourselves up about it and there was really nothing we could to fix anything on the road. So we waited.
We arrived at the reception site, right on time and bravely began opening the boxes...every cupcake was safe and sound. Nothing damaged, de-frosted or smeared...what a relief.
As we nervously walked into the doors we saw the tree that we would stack our cupcakes was huge! Much bigger than we had anticipated or pictured. How where we going to fill this? We brought extras but not enough...but still for some reason we remained completely calm.
It's Complete!
V pulled the cake top out of its box, smoothed a few edges and we placed it on top. Then we began filling each tier with our cupcakes. Once we got the first box unloaded we realized we had plenty...the cupcake tower was the perfect size. We frosted the extras and had just enough room for each cupcake and we thought it would be too big!
It was when it was time to go that those same feelings came over us. We wanted so badly to see the bride's face when she saw it and watch as people bit into their cupcakes...we've never really just left something and not seen a reaction and now today we've had to do it twice. V started snapping pictures and snapping pictures and snapping pictures...I had to pry her away as if again we were leaving our child for the first time.
Now we wait, checking our phones, facebook anything from anyone that was at the reception. Finally, a few hours as we waiting for dinner the Mother of the Groom posted a message and picture on facebook...they loved 'em!!!
This day was by far the best day we've had. It reminded us so much of why we do what we do and its because we love baking! Thank you to my mom for all your help, we couldn't have done this without you and the Basin Martini Bar for allowing us to create desserts for the theater. Thank you Jessa & Carson for this opportunity...Congrats on the new marriage and Barb thank for your support. Also, best of luck to the Ross Ragland Theater we hope our cupcakes helped raise lots of money for you.

No comments:

Post a Comment