In the early part of the book, Julia explains how she eats a cupcake:
It takes a person with a serious sweet tooth to hide desserts in secret stashes. Mine is that serious. The previous night, after trying one of Annie's cupcakes, I'd immediately walked into the kitchen, taken a mocha-flavored cupcake from a tray awaiting circulation, and hidden it behind a jar of wild-grain rice on a lower shelf in the pantry. Now, I walked to the kitchen, shut the pantry door behind me, retrieved the cupcake from its hiding place, and, feeling only the slightest mortification for my little covert cupcake operation, took a large bite.
I had, I'll admit, affected a certain style - a method, if you will - of cupcake eating. To begin, you remove the cupcake liner carefully so as not to unnecessarily crumble the cake, and set it aside. You then turn the cupcake slowly in your hand, taking bites along the line where cake meets icing, your mouth filling with a perfect combination of both components. Once you've come full circle, you gently twist off the bottom half inch of cake, a move that takes considerable finesse and leaves a delicate sliver of cake - the ideal size for lying flat on your tongue and allowing it to slowly dissolve, building anticipation for that final bite. To finish, you are left with the center cylinder of cake and icing, the cupcake's very heart, sometimes filled with a surprising burst of custard or jam or mousse, sometimes not, but always, always, the most moist, flavorful bite of the entire cupcake. Take a breath before diving into that final, perfect bite; it is to be savored for as long as possible. Finally, of course, you scavenge the crumbs from the cupcake liner you set aside during step one, then ball the liner into your fist and overhand it into the nearest receptacle. Make the shot? You get another cupcake.
But I've gotten ahead of myself. Back to that very first bit of hidden cupcake in the pantry: a soft cap of vanilla buttercream giving way to light, creamy mocha cake. I kept eating, turning the cupcake slowly in my hand. This was not rich, one-bite-and-you-couldn't-have-more chocolate. This was refined, complex chocolate cut with a hint of coffee and what else...Currant? Salt? A grown-up, masterful cupcake. it was perfect. I leaned back against the shelves in the cool, dark pantry and felt myself relax.
I am pretty sure that I have never seen anyone eat a cupcake quite like that. But then I wondered - exactly how do I eat a cupcake. There was only one thing for it. At lunch time on Thursday I headed to the cupcake shop that is conveniently located just around the corner from work and bought myself a red velvet cupcake with cream cheese frosting (the best bit!) so that I could see what my preferred cupcake eating methodology is!
It turns out that I like to cut my cupcake into quarters and then I eat the bottom part of the quarter, quickly followed by the top part which is a mix of the cake and the frosting, and then I repeat those steps with the next three quarters. Sometimes I will eat the decoration first (in this case a red heart made out of icing) but other times, like this week, I eat it last.
As much as I like the cupcakes from that shop, they are nowhere near as orgasmic as the one described above, and there isn't that much variety in the flavours, particularly compared to the other flavours that are described in the book which sound just divine!
So, my questions to you all....
What is your favourite flavour cupcake?
How do you eat a cupcake?
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