I am going to make cupcakes for my daughter's high school graduation party but I am hoping for a bit of help from some of you with way more experience than me!
We are expecting some where between 75-125 guests and that is probably the best I'm going to get to narrowing down the guest count due to the kids/friends.
My questions are:
1.How many cupcakes should I plan to make (standard size)?
2.How far ahead can I bake and freeze them with good results?
3.I was planning on using the original WASC but haven't worked through which flavors I'm doing yet. The only request my daughter had was that she wanted one of the flavors to be red velvet. If there are any suggestions on a better or different recipe which works for cupcakes baked in advance, I'm open to it.
4. I was going to keep with a buttercream icing which is more shortening based since the party is outside with no air conditioning. Again any suggestions for whether I'm on target or should consider something different.
Thanks in advance!
Will there be other deserts? If not I would bake enough to make sure everyone gets at least one cupcake.
I have frozen cupcakes with icing and they have turned out fine. I would think a couple of weeks in the freezer should be OK.
I don't like making red velvet from scratch. I would use a box mix and add an extra egg and substitute buttermilk for water.
I think IndyDebbie's buttercream recipe is very good and would hold up well in the heat and humidity.
Thanks for your help and suggestions The only other dessert will be Rita's Italian Ice, self serve. I was hoping you would say 1 per guest because I had read somewhere that 2 per guest was recommended and that seems like an insane amount for 125 people (250 cupcakes).
I was thinking IndyDebbie's would be a good but safe bet but haven't tried it yet. The red velvet is the only request my daughter had and although it's not a fav of mine I plan on moving forward with it. Do you think a cream cheese icing can hold up to the heat?
I plan on baking the cupcakes and freezing them in freezer bags and pulling them out the day before the party and icing them. The party is July 2 and I was going to start baking this weekend. If anyone thinks 3 weeks is too long to freeze cupcakes, please let me know... I can't believe I'm tackling this project. It's my first other than a 1/2 sheet cake I made for my other daughter's college graduation which was challenging in a different way(decorating) but turned out great.
3 weeks in the freezer will be fine. Cream cheese icing will get soft in the heat. But since it is on cupcakes you won't have to worry about it sliding off a cake. You could substitute solid vegetable shortening for some of the butter. I would also add some meringue powder to it. That will give it some stability. I would add 1 to 2 tablespoons depending on how much you are making. Keep those cupcakes in the fridge as long as possible.
I like Indydebbie's buttercream. I have made it. It is easy to make and tasty.
My thought is when making food for lots of people is, just so everyone gets something to eat, then it is enough. No one will leave hungry. When it is gone....it is gone. People can find something else to eat if they are still hungry.
Best of luck
My only advice is to be careful with how you store them in the freezer. The first time I froze 100+ cupcakes I had a mess on my hands. I started by putting them in the freezer individually for 30-60 minutes to get nice and chilled and then put them in a HUGE freezer bag and put that freezer bag in my deep/chest freezer. The only down side to this was that when I pulled them out to thaw the cupcakes were a little stuck together, especially the bottom of one being stuck to the top of the other. I find the tops of cupcakes to be particularly sticky when thawed in general.
But from a timing perspective you're perfectly fine to leave them in for 3+ weeks. No worries there.
I would freeze them in a large plastic or cardboard box and not stack them on top of each other. I would also defrost them in the fridge to cut down on condensation. After they are in the fridge for a while then I would bring them to room temp.
Wow, thanks for all the advise! I don't have the square footage in freezer space to avoid stacking but what I was considering is putting layers of parchment paper or wax paper between the layers to avoid sticking to each other. I'm thinking the wax paper may work better as far as the sticking factor.
I plan on taking all of your excellent advise regarding how to freeze, shortening and and meringue added to cream cheese icing, and defrost from freezer to fridge. Two of the 3 cupcakes will have filling. My plan is to fill after defrosting but prior to frosting. If anyone thinks I should fill prior to freezing, please give me a shout out. I feel so much better after getting some advise. This is a big undertaking for me and I don't want a disaster the day before the party so thanks so much!
I would not use real cream cheese if the frosting is going to be outside in any kind of heat. It is highly perishable and can go bad quickly.
I don't care for cream cheese icing, so I have not tried this, but I have heard you can use cheesecake flavored instant pudding mix, or something like that, in a shortening based icing to make it taste like cream cheese icing, but it won't go bad.
Have fun at your party!