Cupcake Decorating Tips from Food Network’s Melissa d’Arabian
Everyone loves a great cupcake – they’re kid-friendly but can also be elegant enough for a party. I like to find fun and creative ways to spruce up everyday cupcakes, but first and foremost you need a great base and a fantastic frosting. My recipe for a cupcake that has a bit of tang from sour cream and orange zest and is dense enough to hold up to decorating plus a white chocolate cream cheese frosting that adds flavor and decadence to any cupcake.
If you have kids, make this your Saturday-before-Easter afternoon activity. Have the cupcakes baked and then cooled in advance. Divide the white frosting into small bowls and put out an array of food colorings to create Easter-style frosting colors.
Offer an assortment of toppings like sprinkles, jelly beans, crushed candies and cookies, coconut, mini chocolate chips, and beyond so everyone can create a variety of cupcakes. Display on a cake pedestal or cupcake tower and you have an instant centerpiece. You can also set up a DIY toppings bar, and your Easter guests can have a hand in making their very own cupcakes for dessert.
If you want a delicious but not-so-sweet cupcake, try making a faux fruit tartlet – one of my favorites from the French bakery! It’s super simple, but actually quite elegant. Create a glaze by mixing apricot jam with some water, coat the cupcake with the glaze using a brush, then top with a few pieces of small fruit right in the center and top with another brush of glaze. Blueberries are a great option because you don’t have to cut them so they won’t give off water, but you can cut up any fruit to use – just blot it with paper towel before topping the cupcake.
Want to make a pie this Easter? Don’t be afraid to make your own piecrust. Here’s my super simple recipe for a buttery and flaky crust. To add an extra special and personal touch to your pie, carve your steam vents in the shape of a guest’s initials (or your kids’ initials) into the top crust of the pie. It’s a heartfelt tradition my mom started when I was young and one that I proudly carry forth now in her memory.
Melissa d’Arabian is the host of Drop 5 lbs with Good Housekeeping on Cooking Channel. Like her tips? Catch her show on Saturdays at 10:30am ET.