Cupcake Decorating: My fav new hobby

Tonight, I baked and decorated over 70 cupcakes – 50 mini, and 24 full size. Why? Because I felt like it. So tomorrow, my coworkers and matt’s coworkers are going to be very hopped up on sugar.

Easter Cupcakes!

I feel like I’ve stumbled on a lucky little pot of gold for myself – I used to hate baking, but I’ve come around to it, thanks to my cake decorating class. I spent two hours tonight just relaxing with a piping bag and frosting, listening to music and decorating cupcakes. It’s a good stress relief for me, but what’s even better about it is I pretty much have 0% temptation to eat any cupcakes! I’ll work one into my calorie counting every now and then, but what I love about making cupcakes isn’t eating them – it’s the process of making something pretty, and then sharing that creation with friends.

Marbled pastel buttercream

I’m also glad because I feel like I’ve been doing a good job keeping the creativity in my life the last few months. One of my goals for 2012 was to do more creative things, and this blog, cupcake decorating and a few other things have been great for nurturing my artistic side. You can do a lot with cupcakes – marbling, filling, piping, sprinkling… the sky is the limit. It’s kind of easy to fall in love with. The only thing I hate about making cupcakes is the clean up!

Tonight I played around with the SkinnyTaste Coconut Cupcakes recipe, and made a batch of straight chocolate cupcakes as well. I used peeps, cadbury eggs and shredded coconut on top of standard butter cream to decorate. My kitchen was trashed afterwards, but oh well – it was a good time, and in some small way I might brighten someone’s day tomorrow with a pretty cupcake!

Cupcake baking makes for a messy kitchen!

What hobby have you found that just takes you away for a little bit? Reading, cooking, running, painting, etc? I wanna know! I hope you’re having a great day!

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Tempatation: Salty or Sweet?

Happy Wednesday, Double Chinners! Some of you may know that I’m in a cupcake decorating class. It’s been a fun creative outlet for me besides studying and I’m taking it with an old friend from college. Sounds fun, creative and interesting – but doesn’t sound conducive to weight loss, right? Well… I think you might be surprised to know, it ain’t no thang at all! I’m a classic salt lover – give me a pile of tortilla chips over a cookie any day! I’m especially not a huge cake fan (I had to learn to like birthday cake, even), so I knew a cupcake decorating class wouldn’t be a big deal for me.

Luau Cupcakes with Fondant Plumeria and Tiki Men

In class Saturday, we made Luau themed cupcakes, with hand-formed fondant plumeria, graham cracker crumb “sand” and hand drawn fondant tiki men. They’re super cute, right? I ate one out of 17 cupcakes (7 points sans fondant), and now they’re gone – given away to coworkers and friends and neighbors. It’s weird to me that I can have a gorgeous display of homemade cupcakes in my house and cease to even notice they exist, but a bag of tortilla chips is like crack, beckoning to me from the pantry with its salty, crunchy lore.

In fact, I often have little bowls of candy around my home – I love having a bowl of treats for when guests come over, usually something like dark chocolate Doves or like right now, crunchy malted Robin’s Eggs. Again, the candy doesn’t get me into trouble. Occasionally I may have a couple here and there, but it’s never a trigger for me like salty and crunchy are. I can’t even allow myself to buy tortilla chips anymore, because I’ll keep dipping into the bag until I’m shocked that I’ve eaten half a bag on “study breaks”.

Do you have a preference for salty or sweet? Do you find one or the other sets off cravings or triggers?