I love weddings.
After studiously reading through wedding magazines, the knot, and Martha Stewart (not to mention time spent on Pinterest staying up to date with all the latest in wedding trends) I like to consider myself something of an expert on wedding planning. Are you getting married? If so, I could totally plan the shit out of your wedding. And I can make your wedding cake (I’ve made one wedding cake before, so I’m kind of a pro – it’s no big deal).
Despite having someone like me with such amazing skills and knowledge, my sister decided not to let me plan her wedding. You would think she wanted it to be all about HER or something – sheesh!
Instead, my sister had a Las Vegas wedding! She was married on July 4th in front of the fountains of the Bellagio.
Despite having a small and intimate wedding (eight guests total), I took my role as Matron of Honor very seriously! I know when I got married it was the littlest details that made the day extra special.
First on my list was wedding flowers. My sister LOVES daisies! She wanted gerbera daisies in bright pink and orange. Real flowers would not be an option due to two problems: 1) excessive heat and 2) transportation. Since temperatures in Las Vegas average about 105 degrees in July (and the wedding would be outdoors) it was likely the heat would wilt the flowers. Flowers would also need to last quite a few days since everyone was driving to Las Vegas at least a few days before the wedding (and I do NOT have knack for keeping plants of any kind alive).
So, I purchased some brightly colored silk flowers and matching ribbon from Michael’s. I made a small pink bouquet for the bride, wrapped in pink ribbon. For myself and our younger sister, I used two orange blooms wrapped in orange ribbon. For each I tied the stems together with some twine and wrapped the ribbon around to cover it, tying it off with a bow. The stems were wired, so I was able to move them around afterwards to get the desired look. I wanted to keep them small, but elegant.
The groom had a single pink bloom while his best-man and our father had orange ones; I simply hot-glued the single blooms to a pin.
Using leftover flowers and ribbon (and a little puff paint, because doesn’t everyone have a huge stash of puff paint somewhere in their house?) I created some fun wine glasses for all the ladies to toast with while we got ready.
So after enjoying a glorious massage and facial at the hotel spa, my sister sipped champagne from her custom bride glass while I did her hair and makeup.
And finally, the cake! And by cake, I of course mean cupcakes.
My sister’s only request was chocolate…so I kind of took that and ran with it! One of my favorite food bloggers, Confessions of a Cookbook Queen, had posted a recipe for Brownie Batter Cupcakes [add links] shortly before the wedding and I knew it would be perfect! Mine were slightly different as I wanted them all chocolate (her recipe shows a vanilla cupcake) and I used a shortcut for the frosting. I also had to make alterations to account for travel, which I describe below.
Decorations were made using store-bought fondant (I still haven’t managed to make my own yet) and melting chocolate.
Brownie Batter Cupcakes
Adapted from Confessions of a Cookbook Queen
Cupcake batter (any flavor, I used a simple chocolate recipe)
Box of brownie mix (standard size – not family size)
Water (¾ amount needed for brownie mix)
Melted butter (equal to ¾ amount of oil needed for brownie mix)
Vanilla frosting (can use any recipe or store-bought)
- Reserve ¼ of the brownie mix. Mix the remaining with the water and melted butter (batter should be thick). Roll batter into 1 inch balls and place on a wax paper lined cookie sheet. Freeze for at least one hour.
- Preheat oven to 350. Line cupcake tin with liners.
- Fill liners less than halfway with cupcake batter. Place a brownie ball in the center, then cover with a spoonful of cupcake batter. Bake for about 15 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched (note: a toothpick inserted in the center will not come out clean as with other cupcakes since the brownie batter will not be cooked through). Place cupcakes on a rack to cool.
- Prepare frosting by mixing the reserved brownie mix with the vanilla frosting of your choice (if you use your own recipe, make sure it is not more than 2 cups or you won’t have a very strong chocolate taste).
- Once the cupcakes have cooled completely, frost!
Notes for Travel:
Since I was preparing these for a small party of ten and would have to worry about them keeping for a couple days without access to a fridge, I had to do the following to ensure quality cupcakes:
- I halved my cupcake recipe to make only a dozen – I still made the brownie balls as the recipe calls for and just left the remaining balls in the freezer to use in the future.
- I stored my unfrosted cupcakes in an airtight container. I stored the frosting in a separate container, which I kept on ice in our hotel room. The decorations were stored in a baggie, separated with mini cupcake liners.
- I brought along one disposable decorating bag. To avoid having to clean out a decorating tip in a hotel room, I opted to not use one. Instead, I used only the decorating bag and snipped the tip to an appropriate size and piped onto the cupcake. The pre-made decorations were them placed on top!