I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a big fan of Valentine’s Day. However, I must pay homage to it, because, if it had not been created by large corporations to generate sales in an otherwise dead time of the year, I may not have ever found my way into baking. For it was my lack of gift ideas many, many years ago that led to my first attempt at really creating confections. Sure, I’d made box cakes before that – with jarred icing. Nothing fancy – no decorating, or writing or anything of that sort. So while looking through the pages of a magazine, I stumbled across decorated Valentine’s Day cupcakes, with personal messages, hearts, etc. “I can do that!” I ambitiously declared. So, I got some tubes of icing with some plastic decorating tips, and went to work. I wish I had a picture of them – they were – well, not like the ones in the magazine, to put it nicely. But they weren’t a cake wreck either. There was real potential there. My boyfriend at the time loved them too – they tasted even better than they looked, and he was impressed with the time I put into the gift. His reaction, combined with the fun I had making them, inspired me to keep at it.
So here I am, keepin’ at it.
Years later (I will not say how many, at the risk of revealing my true age), I’m still making cupcakes for Valentine’s Day. This year, I made a chocolate coffee cupcake, with coffee-infused frosting, and a thin mint Girl Scout Cookie on top.
Practice really does make perfect. And even though these cupcakes looked and tasted 10 times better than their ancestors, the reaction they garnered upon receipt was the same. So get out there and make something sweet for your sweety. Plus if you’re lucky, they’ll share with you. It’s a win-win.