My recent posts have all been quite harmonious so I thought I’d try and provoke a bit more of a debate this time.
At Saturday’s afternoon tea event, there were many topics of conversation, most that only involved a few people at a time. However, one conversation that did get everyone talking was cupcakes, or more to the point the buttercream topping on cupcakes. And it soon became apparent that we were all in favour of the less is more approach, or even none at all.
Cupcakes became very popular in the UK a few years ago, taking over from the traditional fairy cakes usually decorated with glace icing and edible silver balls, and found at all children’s parties for last few decades. There are hundreds of businesses specialising in making and selling cupcakes. They are so popular that they have now become an alternative to a traditional wedding cake.
What’s great about cupcakes is that they come in a variety of flavours and styles, they are perfect for one person and they seem to inspire more creativity than cakes. What’s not so good about them is the sickly sweet topping that can be as volumous as the actual cake itself. And that the topping and the look of the cupcakes are sometimes more important than the taste, favour and balance of the whole thing. I have come across some amazing cupcakes that do balance the look with the taste, namely the Sunshine Bakery in Leeds, but unfortunately there are still many cafes and bakeries serving buttercream mountains.
All my afternoon tea guests were very anti buttercream yet the boom in cupcakes is still here – so is there a backlash or are we just the minority?