Much as I believe that the cake is the most important part of a cupcake to get right, the fun of making (and eating) them is in the pretty decorations. Trouble is, I'm not exactly au fait with a piping bag and my creations often look amateurish at best. So I was more than happy to take the Cocktails and Cupcakes class run by The Cocoa Box in Hampstead, North London.
We had eight cupcakes each just out of the oven (baked in the same room, actually) for decorating but more were handed around for snacking purposes. Cocktails were delicious and unlimited, like all cocktails should be.
Edible glitter, sugarpaste, fondant icing, sweeties butterfly cutters and piping bags full of frosting was provided - basically everything you could ever possibly need to make your cupcakes look all spangly and sparkly:
I expected the class to be reminiscent of my GCSE Food Technology lessons (where you can't so much as crack an egg without the teacher's say so) but it was much more relaxed. Our Instructor Lisa would occasionally stop to teach us how to make sugarpaste roses or use the piping bag, but she pretty much let us get on with it.
I don't think the combination of sugar and cocktails helped my decorating skills. I made a bit of a mess:
But the afternoon was so much fun and perfect for people who haven't done cake decorating before. I chose to make my cupcakes as gaudy as can be - think frosting, marshmallows AND red glitter - and nobody batted an eyelid. I'd imagine that the classes would make a nice alternative to clubbing for a hen party, too.