Last week was Red Ribbon Week and in most United States schools, that designated week is celebrated in some way, by encouraging students to say no to drugs. Our elementary students had fun wearing red clothing, wearing their favorite hat, bringing their favorite stuffed animal/toy, and on Friday celebrated by wearing our school colors. At the end of the day on Friday, the students were be treated to a "Really Red Party", hosted by the PTO. They were served red juice drinks and red-iced cupcakes. (I used these pumpkin paper liners because that's all I had. They really didn't go with the red icing, but I doubt the kiddos cared :).
I spent the day last Thursday baking and decorating cupcakes for some of the classes. Maybe you already know this, but I just found it out last year - after trying to make the cupcakes for this same event. To get the pretty swirl on top, use a 4B or larger star tip. You must start at the edge of the cupcake and work in towards the middle and getting smaller and smaller and mounding up a little on the top. I couldn't ever figure it out last year, so searched for decorating tips online. Maybe there is at least one of YOU who also wanted to know how to get the pretty little swirl, too!
These pictures are from Red Ribbon Week and also just regular fall decorated cupcakes, using sprinkles in leaf shapes.
Here is my Butter Cream Icing recipe:
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1 cup shortening
2 pounds powdered sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
1/4 cup milk
Food coloring, as desired (I use Wilton gel color)
In large mixing bowl, using electric mixer, beat together butter and shortening. Add powdered sugar about 3 cups at a time, mixing well between additions. Add vanilla and milk, mixing well. Add coloring if desired.
For decorating swirled cupcakes, as shown, insert large decorator tip (No. 4B or larger star tip) into pastry bag (you may need to trim the tip of the bag to make it a little bigger for the tip). Fill bag 2/3 full with icing. Twist or fold down excess of bag. Gently press until icing begins to come out. Decorate as desired.