The other day I caught a Travel Channel show featuring a British tea house making cupcakes. For the next half hour, I found myself ruminating on why I hate cupcakes.
I didn’t always hate cupcakes.
Ten years ago, I lived in Minneapolis where gourmet cupcakes emerged into the food scene as I knew it. Rumours abounded about a woman who sold cupcakes in fancy flavors from a boutique once a week. They were so popular that they’d sell out if you didn’t get there before noon. These cost $5 each and I sometimes blew $20 on four small pastries, feeling very Carrie Bradshaw. But sometimes the cupcakes were dry and I got tired of playing cupcake roulette.
Style Over Substance
Cupcakes frustate me because their looks often deceive. Even though they are pretty, they’re often dried out inside. I think people overbake them or let them sit around for too long. I’m annoyed when bakeries spend so much time and effort making cupcakes look like dazzling jewels, yet take so little care to bake them correctly.
I also dislike cupcakes because I dislike frosting. I don’t like that whip creme-based frosting on cheap, grocery store cakes or sticky-sweet buttercream. Cupcakes are usually covered in at least their bodies’ weight in frosting which I promptly remove.
Rise Of The Cupcakeries
In a recent conversation, a few of us found ourselves debating what a store might be called if it only sold cupcakes. Is “bakery” too general? Is cupcakery even a word? There are entire stores being built that only sell cupcakes and they even appear in stores that don’t typically sell food. The cupcake movement doesn’t seem to be slowing down and I just can’t avoid cupcakes.
Now, who wants a Cronut?
As a connoisseur of cupcakes, points one and two sometimes frustrate me as well. As a frosting fanatic, I have my preferences and whip cream is not one of them. I have no comment on cupcakery, but can appreciate your passion. I recently tried my first impostor cronut. Loved it!
I know I’m in the minority with cupcakes. I thought it was weird that I realized I contained so much dislike for them so I hashed out why. Maybe I’d like them better if they were fried.
I really don’t understand the cupcake craze. As you said, they “are usually covered in at least their bodies’ weight in frosting.” I am okay with frosting to a point, but not that much of it.
Totally agree with you!
I do love cupcakes BUT you are spot on with the quality issue- the vast majority of cupcakes sold in those upscale bakeries are DRY. Sorry, Scratch, I know you do have some awesome cakes- I absolutely adore the Wedding Cake cupcake, but as far as other flavors- they are always too dry! I often remove half the frosting, cut the cake in half and make a sandwich with the frosting in the middle. Just to ease off the sweet overkill. Another trend I am not a fan of- cupcakes replacing big cakes- like wedding cakes. No. Just, no. That’s cute if you’re a 12 year old bride maybe.
Where is Scratch located? I haven’t tried the frosting in the middle method, but it makes sense!
I totally agree with you! I used to love cupcakes as a kid but now I can’t stand frosting on anything and I prefer muffins anyday!