After turning down several baking requests in February and March, I decided to open the kitchen again and do a few jobs on the side. The cookies a few days ago are on their way to Chicago today for a baby shower, and now I’m in the middle of baking 150 cupcakes for a luncheon tomorrow. Bulk cooking is not for the faint of heart, and now that we are working on the living room, we have no dining room so space is at a premium. Organization and a good recipe are the keys to success and less stress.
I really like cooking large batches of cupcakes in these Wilton Cups – they look great, but more importantly, you can cook a tray of twenty-four of them at a time instead of cooking a dozen in a muffin pan. I use the smaller cups for the mini-cupcakes, but these make a full size cupcake just perfectly. I start the process by filling three cups with different amounts of batter to test for rise, and also to get a good idea of the baking time. Once I do a full sheet pan the baking time is a little longer, but I still have a general idea of how long it will take.
It may seem like an unnecessary step, but there’s always a surprising amount of difference between 1/2 full, 2/3 full and 3/4 full. The middle is perfect – plump to the rim, but no overflow. 2/3 it is, and I fill the rest of the cups to that height.
The other benefit of a trial run? Two “extras” to sample warm out of the oven, with fruit and coffee. A nice afternoon break in a house that smells like lemons.