When my husband’s aunts asked me to make cupcakes for my husband’s cousin’s bridal shower, I immediately agreed to it – I’m never one to turn down an opportunity to bake, and I’m certainly not going to turn down an opportunity for extravagant cake decorating! I will admit, however, that once I found out that the theme for the shower was Victorian steampunk, I found myself stressing a little. I love the steampunk aesthetic, but I was really having trouble wrapping my brain around exactly what steampunk cupcakes might look like.
Thankfully, after hours of online shopping, I found inspiration in the form of fancy candy molds, and finally, everything started to come together!
A few days in advance I put together the doilies and chocolates. To create the glittery chocolate gears and keys, I sprinkled some disco dust into the bottom of the candy molds, then poured in melted chocolate.To create the doilies I used white sugar veil and poured them into shallow lace molds.
The day before the event I baked what have become my go-to chocolate cupcakes and whipped up a batch of simple white buttercream. When it was time for assembly I used a huge Ateco 869 French Star tip to pipe a quick swirl on the cooled cupcakes, then simply added all of the embellishments!
The decor for the shower was put together by my husband’s aunts, and aside from the shower they threw for me, I’m not sure I’ve ever seen one more beautiful! They thought of every last detail, and transformed the entire space. I keep telling them they need to start a new career as party planners!
- 2 cups flour
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup cocoa powder
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp espresso powder
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 2 eggs large
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup boiling water
- 2 cups salted butter softened
- 4 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tsp almond extract
- 1/4 cup tablespoons milk
- pinch salt
- 4 pounds powdered sugar sifted
Preheat oven to 350.
Add dry ingredients to the bowl of a stand mixer and stir until well combined. Add milk, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla and mix until well combined. Add boiling water, and mix on high speed for 1 minute.
Distribute batter between lined muffin tins and bake 20-25 minutes or until they test done with a toothpick.
Beat butter until light and fluffy. Add extract, milk, and salt, then mix well. Gradually add powdered sugar and whip until fluffy. It may be necessary to add additional milk to reach your desired consistency.