I still can't get over the unusually warm March we're having here in northeastern Wisconsin. It's been absolutely GORGEOUS! I keep thinking that because March came in like a lamb that there may be a late spring ice storm brewing up, but for now, I'm going to enjoy the sunshine.
Apparently, I'm not the only one who is lovin' the sunshine. A customer of mine ordered up some summer-themed treats for a business meeting and I was oh so happy to oblige. She gave me creative license, so I decided to give them a day at the beach...in cupcake form!
I made my favorite white cupcake batter (even a box mix would be great if you're in a hurry), then I added 3 packets of True Lemon Raspberry Lemonade mix to the batter, along with a 1/2 teaspoon of lemon extract. I wanted the cupcakes to have an extra burst of lemon flavor, and that's exactly what the extract helped with.
After the cupcakes had cooled, I spread a thin layer of frosting over the top of each one. I made a simple vanilla buttercream recipe, using the tried and true Wilton recipe that you can find HERE
For the sand, I used crushed lemon meyer cookies that I picked up from Trader Joes. More lemon....more love. Oh yeahhhh...
The ocean was made with blue sugar sprinkles. I spooned them on so that they wouldn't get into the "sand" too much, then I used the back of the spoon to press the sugar into the frosting a bit.
For the beach ball, I used Sixlet candies. I thought about using a gumball, but I wanted something that wasn't quite so big.
The beach chair was my biggest challenge. I looked EVERYWHERE for Fruit Stripe gum, but apparently, it can only be found at old time novelty candy stores, and I didn't have time to order any online. No worries...I put on my detective cap and head down to the party store to pour over the candy collection. I found some sour candy strips that were the perfect colors. I was all excited, thinking that they would bend like a stick of gum. WRONG! I shaped them and BOIIIIINGGG.... they would snap right out of shape. I tried holding them into shape with royal icing, but it wasn't strong enough to hold, so I ended up poking the beach umbrella through the chair to hold it into place. PERFECT!
I boxed them up and it looked like a big ol' beach party!