We had a NZ-themed lunch at work the other day, for a workmate seconded from the UK. Cheerios with Watties sauce, asparagus rolls, jaffas, chips and dip, cheese rolls, vegemite and cheese toasties, the list goes on, yum.
I made NZ-themed cupcakes. I used the good old reliable Edmonds Cookbook cupcake recipe, as I wanted to show off the decorations, not the actual cupcake. I discovered a wonderful trick the other day. To avoid messing up your cupcake cases when spooning the mixture in, you pop it in a piping bag, and pipe it into the cases. This means no mess, and you can ensure an even distribution in each cupcake case. I did have a slight disaster when my piping bag burst, sending a giant dollop of mixture all over the tins. I quickly scooped the mixture up, wiped everything down, and no one was the wiser! (Although, perhaps time for a new piping bag!)
The day before I made the cupcakes, I made decorations for them. I piped chocolate koru and NZ symbols. From royal icing (sometimes called fondant I understand), I made more koru and some kiwifruit. My sister made the cute sheep from marshmallows. I also made a rugby ball from a chocolate egg covered in icing and with chocolate seams piped on. My sister and I also made the jandals using the royal icing (we simply coloured the icing using food colouring, kneading it into the icing). For some, I simply used a pineapple lump and Mintie as a decoration – a typical NZ lolly. You can see all my creations in the photo attached to this post, and the photo at the top of the page.I iced the cupcakes using a simple butter cream – icing sugar, milk, butter and vanilla essence.
The cupcakes proved a great success. My favourites were the kiwifruit and the rugby ball. So cute!