A few weeks back there was great excitement as the newest Parragon Book review fell onto my doorstep. Normally I am sent children’s books for the girls, but this one was definitely for me and I couldn’t wait to test it out.
Make, Bake, Cupcake is a very beautifully thought out and well made cupcake recipes book, that would make even the least sweetest toothed person run to the baking isle at their nearest supermarket.
The recipes range from cocktail flavours, to a cute kiddie section and from feisty flavours, to fun novelty cupcakes. It’s beautifully designed and has the most amazing food photography imaginable, that makes you want to pull the pictures off the page stuff them into your mouth.
It’s the sort of book that would make an ideal present for cake lovers and at a very reasonable £14.99 would look fabulous on any budding chef’s bookshelf. However, the recipes can be quite costly to make and don’t always turn out like the lovely photographs.
I really love the concept of this book and would definitely buy it. However, if I’m totally honest, after trying out five of the numerous recipes I can really only say one turned out very well. Maybe I was being a little too adventurous when we started with the Rainbow Cupcakes and maybe I was being a little naive by getting the girls involved…
Our attempt at the Rainbow cakes looked more like a muddy puddles than rainbows, as the different layers all merged into one instead of laying on top of each other. I also couldn’t get the frosting to work, but I thought maybe the egg whites may have been too runny, as they were from my in-laws chickens!
Then we tried the Limoncello, which was actually very yummy, but yet again I couldn’t get the frosting to work. Both of these called for three egg whites and sugar in the frosting, almost like a meringue mix with butter and flavour added. I’m guessing there may be a knack to getting those so called peaks!
Next, I was feeling adventurous again, so we tried the Hearts In A Cupcake recipe. These did not turn out well at all, the hearts rose with the mixture leaving the tops exposed and overcooked. They were very dense and could have be used as a weapon if need be and the frosting was so sweet everyone had to scrape it off the top before eating the cake underneath.
I decided it was definitely a flaw with my baking skills and thought I would try and bake some while the girls were at school and not under my feet. Maybe the fact I’m a throw it in the bowl and mix kinda girl, had something to do with my lack of producing cakes that resembled anything near the wonderful photographs.
With this in mind I packed the girls off and tried the Mudslide Cupcakes and Pink Lemonade Cupcakes. I promise I stuck to the instructions and the recipe to the letter, but still had varying results. The Mudslide was exactly that and ended up all over the tin and in the bottom of the oven, to the point I had to throw the tin away.
However, I saved some scrape off from the oven floor to taste it and in fairness, it tasted great. Another plus point was that the frosting finally came up trumps… Although I then had no cupcakes to put it on, so I guess you could say that was the biggest disaster.
Last but not least, was the Pink Lemonade Cupcakes and HALLELLUJAH they looked and tasted as good as the pictures in the book…. Even the frosting!
Overall, I love this book and although some of the cakes haven’t turned out as well as I’d have liked, I do love a challenge and will definitely keep trying the different recipes. They look so scrumptious in the book and the ones that worked tasted so too. Just be prepared for a few disasters before you hit the jackpot, as some of the recipes are quite complex but definitely worth the effort… HAPPY BAKING!
We received a copy of Make, Bake, Cupcake for review purposes, but all photos and opinions are my own