Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Cute Critter Cupcakes

My family loves animals. In the words of my cousin Melissa, "we all get wildly emotional over animals." There are tons of anecdotes - from Tio Mario going vigilante mode and kidnapping a pit-mix from a severe abuse situation (the origin story of the family dog), to Tia Rose jumping into a dumpster when she heard cries from the sole surviving kitten of a litter trapped in a tapped box with no air holes.  There are paw prints all over our hearts- Autumn, Bruce, Parker, Lily, Remi, Madison, Bullet, Jack, Samantha, Tyson, Petey, Bootsie, Bugs, Penelope, and Menina to name a few. My husband likes to tease, "it's something in the water," because it is an inherit trait we share.

This love of animals has lead me to volunteering with the Animal Welfare League, a community-based non-profit rescue. They do amazing things! It's a no-kill shelter willing to go the extra mile to help a range of ailments and social behaviors. Their doors are open to all walks of life. On more than one occasion, I've walked in the back to wash dishes and did a double take. Was that a turkey? Pigeons? A pig - f'real? They give where it's needed.

So naturally, I was more than happy to respond to their request for bake sale goods! During the last go around, I made Unicorn cupcakes to appeal to both kids and adults. This time, I decided to keep with the theme and create Cute Critter Cupcakes.

Each cupcake had it's own "look." I started with the idea of only making cats but one stumpy set of ears made me giggle - so I ran with it. Some cupcakes ended up resembling a mouse, bear, bunny, and hamster. Either way - they're pretty funny and very tasty!

And remember: Adopt -- Don't Shop!

Cute Critter Cupcakes

Cupcake Recipe
Recipe of your choice!
I went with the Ultimate Chocolate Cupcakes from America's Test Kitchen to compliment the white frosting.

Perfect Crusting Buttercream Frosting
from I Am Baker
Pipe using an open star tip (i.e. Ateco 869 or Wilton 32); cover the entire base in rings of piping. Working your way in to the center, keeping adding extra layers for a domed effect.

Nose -- Wafer Heart Sprinkles
Whiskers and Eyes -- black and white fondant
Ears -- white and pink fondant

No patterns were used - these were freestyle. If you want more consistency, use cookie cutters! The ears can be made with a small heart with the pointed end being the tip of the ears.