Let’s talk about cupcakes.
There are a thousand other things going on in the world that we could be talking about – wars, invasions, disappearing planes, poverty, pollution to name a few. And while we shouldn’t ignore any of the things that are taking place in our world right now, sometimes,
it’s good to take a break and enjoy something simple. Something good.
Something like cupcakes.
My sister was teasing me the other day (while she was devouring a recently-baked strawberry and cream cheese cupcake) about my cupcake obsession. I can’t blame her, really. This time a year ago I was entirely wheat and sugar-free, and had been for months. Now, here I am, making cupcakes at least on a weekly basis.
Baking has always been a source of comfort for me. It started with my grandma. She loved baking, and hardly let a day go by without producing some sweet concoction from her oven. Some of my most vivid memories are standing on a stool next to her in her yellow kitchen, my sister on the other side of grandma, each of us waiting for her to give us a beater to lick. Cookies, cakes, pies, muffins…I can still smell them all.
Now, as an adult, I crave those smells, but more than that, I crave the method of baking. Dry ingredients, wet ingredients, mixing them just so. Then – and here’s where the magic of the cupcake comes in for me – neatly separating the batter into each little cup. I love thinking about the hands that will pull the paper away from the little cakes. I love how, when they’re all lined up, waiting to be frosted, that they all look the same…and different. And once they’re cooled, and frosted, I love how I know how they’ll be eaten – my youngest ones will lick the frosting off first; my oldest tears the bottom off and eats the cake first, then the frosting.
Just like me.
In the big scheme of thing, in the big picture, cupcakes are meaningless. The world won’t brake for cupcakes, or sweet memories, or the smells of sugar and vanilla in the kitchen. But my world, this family of six, does. Because cupcakes are more than just a sweet treat at the end of the day. They’re an expression of warmth and love and contentment.