Welcome to the Jungle

I love love LOVE doing baby showers. I get to be over the top, colorful, and cute-to-the-max. And what an excuse to get creative and practice my piping skills! My usual route is to focus on the ingredients, and the aesthetic of my cakes sort of follows: artisan, detailed, beautiful, but simple and telling of the flavor profile. But yesterday, I got to make jungle cupcakes! Swirling colors, chocolate greenery, and animals!! The decorations make them look as if they are all the same, but they are actually a sampler of chocolate flavors: all chocolate cake with various fillings- dark chocolate truffle, espresso truffle, ginger truffle, peanut butter, and cherry preserves. Yum!

And without further ado... Let's meet the players, shall we?

Jungle grass!

Jungle leaves (with gold shimmer!)

More leaves.

Chocolate-coated jungle animals!

Party ribbon!

As many of you know, I don't often make my cakes look like other things (which I have talked about before), and so it is always an adventure when I head in that direction. I'm never quite sure how things will turn out or what effect the elements, so to speak, will have on the cake. Case in point: yesterday was in the high 80's, and we have no air conditioning. Always tricky with cake and frosting, but I was also making accoutrement from chocolate... bad news.

However, my LUCK (and believe me, it is always luck) was off the charts and the little damage that occurred actually worked in my favor! My little chocolate jungle grasses started to melt.... They curled and bent into very realistic looking jungle grass, if I do say so. In fact, they looked more realistic and finessed than I ever could have made them on purpose. Score.

Now let's take a look at the group shots (pre-meltage, that is). And bring on the baby showers! I love them <3