How to Make Bumblebee Cupcakes
Spring has finally arrived, and I for one couldn’t be happier! I love getting in the kitchen and baking up some suitably themed cakes.
These cute bumblebee cupcakes are perfect for those who are beginners when it comes to working with fondant icing. The bee is simply made from three different colours of fondant which you can buy ready coloured, plunger cutters are then used to make the pretty flowers and butterflies that adorn these scrummy cupcakes . . .
For the cupcakes:
- 175g (6oz) butter
- 175g (6oz) caster sugar
- 175g (6oz) self-raising flour
- Three large eggs
- One teaspoon vanilla extract
For the buttercream:
- 225g (8oz) butter
- 450g (1lb) icing sugar
- Two to three tablespoons milk
- One teaspoon vanilla extract
- Pink, yellow and green food colourings (gel/paste is best)
To decorate you will need:
1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius/Fan 160 degrees Celsius/350 degrees Fahrenheit/gas mark four, and line a 12 hole muffin tin with paper cupcake or muffin cases.
2. Put the butter, caster sugar, eggs and vanilla extract into the bowl of a free-standing mixer (or you could use a handheld electric whisk and mixing bowl). Then sift in the flour, lifting the sieve quite high to incorporate air, and beat for 1 to 2 minutes until light and creamy. Be careful not to over mix. Divide the mixture evenly between the paper cases.
3. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until well risen and a skewer inserted into one of the cakes comes out clean. Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
4. Meanwhile, prepare the buttercream. Beat the butter until soft and creamy. Sift the icing sugar and add to the creamed butter in two stages, mixing on a low speed. When fully incorporated add the milk and vanilla extract and beat for 3 to 5 minutes on a higher speed.
5. Divide the buttercream between three bowls. Using the tip of a cocktail stick to add a little pink, green and yellow food colouring to each bowl of buttercream.
6. Spoon the first coloured buttercream into a piping bag fitted with a round nozzle and swirl it on top of four cupcakes. Repeat this process with the other two colours of buttercream.
7. To make the fondant bumblebees, firstly, using yellow fondant icing make a ball that’s just over half an inch in diameter for the body. Roll this between your hands, making an oval shape. Dust your work surface with icing sugar and roll out the black fondant thinly icing using a rolling pin.
8. Using a sharp knife cut thin strips of black fondant for the bumblebee’s stripes. Brush one side of each strip of icing using a little water, acting as glue, and stick three strips to the yellow body creating the bumblebee’s stripes. To make the bumblebees eyes, roll a very small amount of black fondant into two balls and stick them to the bee’s body using a little water. To make the wings use a pea size amount of white fondant icing, using your fingers, pinch it into a flattened teardrop shape and stick to the top of the bee’s body using a little water.
9. To make fondant flowers and butterflies to top your cupcakes, dust your work surface with icing sugar and roll out your fondant icing. For my flowers, I used a selection of bright coloured fondant icings. You can keep any left over fondant icings to use at a later date. There are various flower and butterfly shaped cutters available to buy; I used plunger flower and butterfly cutters in a variety of different sizes. In the centre of each flower, use a small amount of fondant icing rolled into a ball.
10. Once you have made your decorations you can decorate your pretty pastel cupcakes with a handmade fondant bumblebee surrounded by fondant flowers and butterflies for you, your friends and family to enjoy.