The Great Cupcake Extravaganza, part Wedding

26 08 2010

When we last left off, I was pondering the potential difficulties of baking nine dozen wedding cupcakes in a borrowed home kitchen in August.

Lemon and strawberry filled cupcakes, before icing.

It got more complicated before the job was done.  Instead of a kitchen 10 minutes’ walk from my hotel, I was booked in a different home kitchen, 15 minutes’ drive across town.  So I had to rely on family and friends of the happy couple to get me to and from my workspace.

Piping away

And then the caterer wanted the cupcakes early, to have them set up at the beginning of the reception.  This caused a small amount of stress when I didn’t know the weather forecast, but Mother Nature smiled on us and gave us a lovely day in the mid-70s – cool enough that I didn’t have to worry about the buttercream melting in the sun.

still piping...

While I did remember to pack my silicone molds for the fillings, and to bring over French cocoa powder and Turkish hazelnuts, somehow I forgot to bring along a piping bag and my trusty star tip.  Fortunately, one of the guests was able to bring in a set of tips from Boston; unfortunately, they were a bit too small for what I had in mind.  I am blessed with a very resourceful husband who managed to doctor one of the tips to make it closer to the one I had left behind.  Another crisis averted!

D. Special, ready to go

There was one final freak-out, when the Delice de Bourgogne-laced cream cheese icing still didn’t want to set up.  I admitted that it was hubristic (or maybe just plain stupid) of me to attempt a newly reformulated recipe the day before a wedding, and noted the trust and bravery on the part of Hope and D. in choosing a cupcake that had failed miserably in the tasting round.  Pride and gluttony aside, I made it work by sheer force: I whipped in some leftover gelatin, and kept those puppies as cold as possible until it was time to deliver them.  (Many thanks go to Brian, who graciously carted me, Nick, the cupcakes, and a box of equipment around town, and who understood the game of start-the-car-20-minutes-before-I’m-ready-to-go-so-the-pastry-can-stay-cold immediately.)

Trying to get the right whimsical swirls of meringue on the lemon cupcake

Naturally, I was running a bit late on the day of the wedding, but at least the meringue for the lemon cupcakes was cooperating, and the caterers didn’t seem too stressed out when I brought them seven Tupperwares of cupcakes, each with different instructions (e.g. “Don’t close the lids on these all the way or the frosting will get smooshed,” “Keep these ones cold, or the icing might run,” or “You’d better hold these ones in your lap, just to be safe”).

toasty toasty

All the same, when I got to the reception site, the instructions had gotten mixed up, and the strawberry-champagne cupcakes were already on the display, while the lemon meringues were nowhere to be seen.  The situation was quickly remedied, and I could finally sit back and enjoy myself.

Part of the wedding cupcake display

They looked beautiful on their wire stands, in the shadow of a castle overlooking the ocean.

Wedding cupcake display

Most importantly, though, everyone loved them.  There were enough that those guests who wanted to try more than one flavor (or even have two of one kind) were able to, and they made a perfect sweet ending to a very sweet wedding.

Originally published on Croque-Camille.



14 responses

26 08 2010

Have 2 dozen sent to Seattle immediately.

all the best to Jeff.


26 08 2010

And two more dozen to California.

These look exquisite.


26 08 2010

Camille, those look beautiful. I’m in utter awe. If I ever get married (gosh, that seems unlikely), I want you to fly to me and be my cupcake queen. Except I’ll want something with peanut butte,r so you’d best get brainstorming. Oh, and find me a husband, first, too? Kthnxbai! 😉

26 08 2010
Ann Mah

Mazeltov, Camille! And to the happy couple as well! The cupcakes look mouth-watering and so beautiful in situ!

27 08 2010
hungry dog

These are beautiful, what lucky friends you have. Not only did they have delicious cupcakes for their wedding, but made with love by a good friend. Lovely all around!

28 08 2010
Tammy McLeod

Lemon meringue – I love it! What a great gift you gave this wedding couple Camille. No one would ever know about the angst of the day (if you hadn’t told us!). Lovely blog post.

31 08 2010

Pete – Jeff sends his regards.

Mom – Thanks, I wish I could!

Hannah – One peanut butter cupcake husband, coming up!

Ann – Merci!

hungry dog – Thanks so much!

Tammy – I think they’ve built entire tv networks based on behind-the-scenes drama. It’s one of the things that’s so magical about baking. And weddings.

2 09 2010

What a wonderful wedding gift – I especially love how good the lemon meringues look. You really deserve the title of ‘cupcake queen’ 🙂

2 09 2010

Yes, you DO have lucky friends! The cupcakes were amazingly delicious and I still had cream-cheese frosting in my hair the next morning (feeding someone a bite of cupcake can’t be THAT hard, I think it was on purpose). Glad I didn’t know about all this saga at the time, but it’s fun to read about it now! I’m happy to see such wonderful photos of the cupcakes and I’d love to see any other food ones you took!!

2 09 2010

Grapefruit – Aw, shucks. I like the rustic look of the lemon meringues, too.

Hopie – Tee hee. I’m just glad it all worked out, and that everyone was happy with the dessert, but most especially you and D. 🙂

3 09 2010

The wedding guests are still talking about how amazing the cupcakes were and wishing they had greedily each taken three to taste them all! My husband and I (figuring as parents of a bride we could take liberties) did take three and they were all magnificently amazing. The chocolate made with hazelnut flour (you must have ground it yourself because I found the leftover hazelnuts) were divine. I hardly got to see you as you worked so hard for two days in our friend’s kitchen to produce your loving and lovely cupcake wedding extravaganza. So I hope to properly hug and thank you the next time I’m in Paris (or you’re in Rockport!). Meanwhile, you gave us all unforgettable wedding cupcake memories – one of the beautiful highlights of the day. (I love the photos!) Thank you so, so much! Hope’s Mom

4 09 2010

Katharine – Thank you so much for the sweet note! I’m so glad you liked the cupcakes, and I hope we will get a chance to see each other under less hectic circumstances in the near future!

p.s. I hand-imported the hazelnut meal for the cupcakes themselves, the leftover ground hazelnuts were actually part of the praliné (the caramelized almond-hazelnut mixture I used to flavor the buttercream on top of the cupcake), which I did make myself. 🙂

10 09 2010

They all look so good. Good job!

11 09 2010

Joy – Thank you!

%d bloggers like this: