Is it Spring yet?
Whew…glad that’s done! These were really fun to make but quite time consuming. This idea came from a great book called “Hello, Cupcake”, I love it’s approach to cupcake decorating…no fancy tools or skills required. That is right up my alley. Happy Spring!
Just a disclaimer before I get started with the instructions: I used the butterfly and antenna templates from the book “Hello, cupcake”, with that being said I would encourage you to think about purchasing the book. Why you ask? Because it is a great book with lots of wonderful ideas that the average Jane can make and also because I have decided not to scan the template and post it out of respect for the author/copyright issues. My other suggestion would be to find a template on-line or free hand the shape yourself.
Ok so here goes…
To start you will need 24 vanilla or chocolate cupcakes baked in brown paper liners. Seeing that brown cupcake liners are not that easy to find in the store I ended up using the regular ole pink and yellow ones, but if you want to copy these exactly then head on over to www.confectioneryhouse.com where they can be ordered. Ok, now that we have that covered I have a confession….I used a cake mix and canned frosting! Anyone that knows me is now laughing uncontrollably as they know I shudder every time canned frosting is mentioned. However, I would encourage you to use these shortcuts if you opt to make these beauties because by the end of the night you will be swearing at the ungodly number of brown and orange wings sitting all over your kitchen.
“Hello, Cupcake” does suggest that you tweak the box mix a little…
1 box (18.25) cake mix ( Steer clear of the mixes with pudding, and the lighter cakes such an angel food)
1 cup buttermilk in place of the water called for on the box
4 large eggs in place of the number called for on the box
Bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes and then cool completely
Now that we have discussed that we can move on to the assembly process.
24 chocolate or vanilla cupcakes baked in brown paper liners
2 cups dark chocolate melting wafers
2 cups orange candy melting wafers
3 tablespoons white nonpareils
3/4 cup dark chocolate frosting
1 can (16oz.) vanilla frosting
Yellow food coloring
72 brown M&M’s
Place 5 or so wing and antennae templates on 2-3 cookie sheets and tape down. I found that it was easier to cut squares of wax paper versus piping 5 sets of wings on one big sheet of wax paper. Next, place 1 cup of the chocolate melts in a ziploc bag. DO NOT SEAL THE BAG. Microwave in 10 second intervals, massaging the wafers in between until melted. It took about 30 seconds to get to a smooth consistency. Press out the excess air and seal the bag. Repeat this process with the orange candy melts. Snip a 1/16-inch corner from each bag.
Working on one wing at a time and using the melted dark cocoa, outline the template on wax paper. Go over the outline several times until you have a nice thick line. Fill in with the orange melted candy. At this point you may be thinking it doesn’t look very good but have faith the next step with amaze you. Tap or shimmy the pan to slightly flatten and meld the color together. With a toothpick, pull the dark cocoa into the orange to create a beautiful wing design. Sprinkle the dark cocoa edges with a few of the white nonpareils while that candy is still liquid. Repeat this until you have 12 small sets and 15 large sets. Place the cookie sheets in the refrigerator until set, about 5 minutes. Follow the same procedure to make the antennae, using the melted dark chocolate.
Spoon the chocolate frosting into a ziplock bag, press out the excess air, seal, and set aside. Tint the vanilla frosting pale yellow with food coloring. Spread the yellow frosting on top of the cupcakes.
Whew…we’re finally ready to assemble the butterflies…are you tired yet??
Place two of the M&M’s, 1/2 inch apart on the cupcake. This can be directly on top or somewhat to the side, it is entirely up to you! Carefully peel the wings from the wax paper. Press the inside edge of the wing into the frosting about 1/4 inch apart, allowing the wings to lean on the M&M’s. You can put two of the smaller butterflies on some of the cupcakes. Next, peel the antennae from the wax paper and gently press them into the frosting at the head of the butterfly.
Snip a 1/8 inch corner from the bag of chocolate frosting. Starting at the antennae pipe 4 to 5 small beads of frosting down the length of wings to create a body. On the last bead, draw the frosting into a small point.
Arrange the cupcakes on a large platter fairly close together. And finally, give yourself and pat on the back and TAKE A PICTURE…trust me…once they’ve been devoured you will want proof of your hard work.
Source: “Hello, Cupcake” by Karen Tack and Alan Richardson
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