Baby Bluebird Cupcakes
This year while scrolling through Martha Stewart’s website I came across the cutest baby bird cupcakes. I immediately knew I was going to make this for Easter Sunday. What better than baby birds in a toasted coconut nest to represent Sping and the Easter holiday.
I chose a very basic Yellow Cake for the cupcakes and used my favorite Swiss Meringue Buttercream. Martha’s served only for inspiration, the recipe and technique were all mine.
I used disposable piping bags for the frosting and just cut the tips off at different points in order to get different thicknesses. The nest was a simple circle of frosting with and extra layer to give it height.
I covered the nest in toasted coconut. Coconut is very easy to toast and I must say makes the coconut taste a million times better! Simply start with a cup of sweetened flake coconut in a dry pan on medium heat, stirring constantly, until toasty brown.
The blue birds were made with a separate bag of buttercream tinted blue. I cut the tip of this bag thinner than the nest. Before piping the birds, be sure to remove extra loose coconut to insure the birds stay in place. To make the birds all it takes is three roundish blobs, wallah!
I cut a very small opening in the last buttercream bag to create the beaks. By inserting the tip of the piping bag into the bird and gently squeezing then pulling up, a beak was formed. I used chocolate jimmies (sprinkles) for the eyes. All of the cupcakes had a slightly different shape giving them an organic feel, they turned out great!
What You’ll Need:
- 3/4 pound (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for greasing the pans
- 2 cups sugar
- 5 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the pans
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup milk
1.) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 2 (9-inch) round cake pans, then line them parchment paper. Grease them again and dust lightly with flour.
2.) In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium-high speed for 3 to 5 minutes, until light yellow and fluffy. Crack the eggs into a small bowl. With the mixer on medium speed, add the eggs 1 at a time, scraping down the bowl once during mixing. Add the vanilla extract and mix well. The mixture might look curdled; don’t be concerned.
3.) In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the dry ingredients and the milk to the batter in 3 parts, beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Mix until just combined.
4.) Pour the batter evenly into the 2 pans and smooth the top with a knife. Bake in the center of the oven for 45 to 55 minutes, until the tops are browned and a cake tester comes out clean. Cool on a baking rack for 30 minutes, then turn the cakes out onto a baking rack to finish cooling.