Cupcakes are en vogue as a cute dessert at parties, even parties for adults, but if you're looking for something unusual to serve that will really make an impression, find a giant cupcake pan. This pan is a two-segment baking pan in which you bake the bottom and top pieces of an enormous cupcake and then place the conical piece onto the cylindrical piece to make a huge cupcake. Decorating this cake to look like a cupcake is not as difficult as you would think; just be sure to have your supplies and plan ahead of time.
Sketch an image of how you'd like your finished cupcake to look. Consider a colour scheme as well as the access you have to certain icing colours and tips. Prepare your icing colours by separating the buttercream icing into as many bowls as you will have colours. Mix the icing colouring or food colouring thoroughly to achieve the colours you desire. The giant cupcake looks best if you use at least four different colours.
Ice the cupcake's “frosting” portion first, covering the whole top of the cupcake in one colour. Use the angled spatula to spread icing all over the cone-shape cake, moving your spatula only on the icing, never touching the cake. When taking the spatula off of the cake, pull it away at a 45-degree angle, rather than straight off at a 90-degree angle to avoid disturbing the smooth icing.
Spread a different-colour icing all around the base of the cupcake. This is where the “liner” of the cupcake will be, so the cake is formed in ridges. Be sure to get icing in between the ridges of the cake, too, smoothing the icing exactly as you did with the top layer.
Put an icing tip of size 12 into a pastry bag, or use a star tip of size 18 or 21 if you want frilled lines. Fill the pastry bag halfway with icing of a third colour. Position the bag at 90 degrees over one of the spaces in between the ridges of the cupcake “liner” and squeeze the bag as you draw a line down from where the cupcake halves meet in the middle to the bottom of the cake. Draw the same vertical line down each ridge to make the cupcake liner look real.
Place an M1 tip or other large tip in an icing bag and fill it halfway with icing. Use either a fourth colour or the same colour that you used to draw the lines on the cupcake liner. Sparsely cover the cake with “sprinkles” by squeezing out large dots randomly all over the top half of the cupcake. If you have more icing colours, use these for the same purpose. Use a pink or red colour to squeeze out a very large dot on top for a cherry.
If you have trouble getting the top and bottom to finish baking at the same time, bake in two shifts; bake the top first, remove it from the pan and then bake the bottom. Adhere the top and bottom pieces together with buttercream frosting in between the layers, or if you will be transporting the cake, poke two small round dowels into the cake to hold the top onto the bottom. Decorate only a completely cooled cake. The icing tips mentioned are only suggestions; use whatever tips you have access to, but larger ones will make the decorations really pop. Practice making this cake once before making it for a large event or party, as it takes some practice to master.