Cupcakes with coloured icing

Friday, June 4, 2010


Recently, the boy turned five, so we had a party for him. Imagining a slew of little boys running around was nothing close to the reality- it was CRAZY but fun. The concept that he has chosen his own friends, for whatever reasons, is fascinating to me. After years of him playing with the children of my friends, it's quite interesting to see all that.

In any event, his theme was Star Wars. Huh. I had grand visions of renting a star-shaped cake pan, etc etc, however, what I ended up doing was buying the El Peto gluten free white cake mix and making cupcakes. I know I didn't have to make the cake gluten free, being that I'm the only one who can't eat it otherwise, but my kitchen is gradually evolving and I certainly don't have any wheat flour lying around... 

Okay. Now what? Icing. Normally, I would neither have made a cake nor icing with refined sugar. However, being that we was having his little friends over, I knew what I was up against: candy, hot dogs, cookies... Most children the boy's age are not fed the same kind of diet he is. They are given "Lunchables" every day or some other horrible food-substitute I wouldn't ever choose to feed to him. So I wasn't about to create something ridiculously healthy as a palate needs to be trained away from all that junk to appreciate something not-so-processed. More on that in another post.

Anyways, I was sitting at the bulk foods store looking through the food colouring. Um, do you know what it's made of? I have been desperately searching for ingredients on the Internet but have failed to find the ingredients. Needless to say, I read them, didn't recognize them, and thought "Aw MAN!!! I can't put this in my kid's food!"

The Plan- natural food colouring for icing
How on earth would I make blue icing without blue dye? LIGHT BULB MOMENT: I would use blueberries. What else could I use for food colouring? Chlorophyll for green, turmeric for yellow...the list goes on. No, you won't get the blue icing that stains your kid's face for hours, but you WILL get a subtle tint.

I ended up making purple by simmering down blueberries and blackberries, and green, using a big blob of avocado in a regular icing recipe (in the place of the butter). Incidentally, making icing with berries gives the icing a MUCH nicer flavour than just nasty food colouring. That purple berry icing was good - and would have been even better if I hadn't used icing sugar. Good Lord that stuff is acid-sweet. A nice coconut sugar the next time... Must really perfect how all that would work. I love my avocado dark chocolate icing, but it is VERY rich and I don't have an option when I want vanilla. Any ideas?


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