In Contests, Cupcakes, Events

Photo by Shawn Dearn.

On Sunday September 26th, I walked into Ottawa city hall into a room filled with hundreds of cupcakes. Hundreds of cupcakes made by Ottawa’s finest professional and amateur bakers. Hundreds of cupcakes just waiting to be eaten. 

Excited yet? I know I was. 

There’s nothing in the world like being in a room filled with so many passionate people. Everyone in attendance was filled with so much positive energy. Excitement, hope, pride. It was so thick in the air you could, well, spread it on a cupcake.

But we’ll get there. First, let’s figure out how I got to this magical place. It started with a sketch:

This “Death by Chocolate” doodle I did on my iPad won out over some other sketches, including Raspberry Red Velvet, a Mini Cupcake Wedding Cake and “The Butterscotch Brandy Floozey.” (I filed that last one away for later.)  

I scoured the internets for some cupcake liners similar to those I doodled and found the perfect design from Sweet Cuppin Cakes Bakery and Cupcakery Supplies – only to have them get lost in the mail! Luckily Lyndsay over at Sweet Cuppin Cakes is a queen among women, and overnighted another bunch.

So into the cupcake pan they went, along with two ice cream scoops full of my favorite devil’s food chocolate cupcake batter.

Try not to fall too deeply in love with my duck kettle. He’s taken.

Next, I sat down on the couch with a big ‘ol tub of fondant and season one of Intervention on Netflix. They laughed, they cried, they kicked their crack habits, and I fashioned a bajjion tiny roses and painted them with lustre dust.

I iced the cupcakes with my favorite rich dark chocolate icing. Not too sweet, not too dark, melts in your mouth like the center of a Lindor chocolate but stays solid enough for transport. Sounds good, right? Maybe you tried some at the cupcake camp and thought “what is this amazing icing? I would give my left arm for the recipe! Fetch me my bone saw!” At least that’s what I said the first time I tried it. Well, stay tuned because my next blog post will have the recipe. Subscribe to my RSS or Twitter feed so you don’t miss it!

And that’s how I ended up at city hall, surrounded by cupcakes. I had skipped breakfast, so to say I was drooling would be an understatement. I was more frothing.

I attempted to block out my sweet surroundings while Mr. B and I set up my homemade cupcake tier (tutorial coming soon!) and filled out the paper handed out to me by one of the many friendly volunteers.

After I’m all set up, we snap a quick picture of me with the cupcakes in which I flash what I call “The Dork Hands.”

I bust out the dork hands whenever I’m feeling nervous or self-conscious. They’re totally involuntary and totally dorky. First photo with the new in-laws? Dork hands. About to walk down the aisle in a hot pink bridesmaid dress? Dork hands. Photo with a celebrity? Dork hands. They’re a curse.

Alright, enough of the dork hands. Lets get to what you really wanna see.

The cupcakes, baby.

Below are a few of my favorites from some truly amazing bakers:

Neapolitan cupcakes by The Cupcake Fairy

Chocolate Pecan Pie Cupcakes from Let Them Eat Cake BakeryPumpkin Latte Creme Brulee Cupcakes from Pasticceria Gelateria Italiana (Won Most Original in the Pro category!)

White Chocolate and Chai Tea Cupcakes from Isobel’sVegan Chocolate Cupcakes from Auntie Loo’s TreatsMaple & Vanilla Bean Cupcakes from The Vanilla Bean Baker

Salted Caramel Filled Chocolate Cupcakes from Michelle Clark (Won Best Filling in the Amateur category!)

Caramel Apple Crunch Cupcakes from Sarah TolledoBoston Cream Pie Cupcakes from Sara Qualizza (Love the animal print baking cups!)

Snow Covered Volcano Cupcakes from my lovely friend Kristin Lyons of Monster Appetite

See what I mean about the frothing? It’s OK, go get yourself a napkin. I’ll wait.

My cupcakes disappeared in under five minutes, which was both awesome and heartbreaking because it was sad to see them go. But people really seemed to enjoy them, which is my favorite part of baking – watching people eat it.

See this guy? This guys knows the score. (Photo by Rick Bond.)

Here’s my lovely sister-in-law preparing for nomming. That’s her “OHM” face.

After the crowds had picked the cupcake tiers and carriers clean of every last bit of fondant and icing, the bakers hung around with bated breath to hear the results of the judging. Guest judges Chef Michael Blackie, Kady O’Malley, Alan Neal and Lynne Frappier powered ’em down like champs, risking sugar coma in the name of cupcakes.

And they did!

I won Best Decorated in the Pro category! Zany, right? It was an honor to be chosen from some amazingly tough competition.

With the combination of the day’s excitement, the win and the large amount of sugar coursing through my veins, I pretty much vibrated my way out of city hall and all the way home.

Thanks to all the amazing volunteers and organizers for putting together a great event. Let’s do it again! *bouncebouncebounce* I’m ready! Whoo!

Perhaps that’s still the sugar talking. Ignore me, I’m delirious.

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Showing 10 comments
  • Don (

    Oh my do I ever love this blog post!

    And I think I'm going to love your blog! 🙂

  • Jenny Burgesse

    Thanks Don! I think now that I've got started, I'ma be a blogging MACHINE! 😉 Thanks for your tips and encouragement as well.

  • Paula

    I love this post as much as your delicious cupcake. Both made me smile…a lot!

    p.s. Looking forward to the post on your decadent frosting 🙂

  • Jenny Burgesse

    Thank you Paula!

  • Becki D.

    Love it! You have a great writing "voice!"

    I also can't wait for the frosting recipe…no, seriously – chopchop, get to it lady! 😉

  • tam

    Congrats on winning Best Decorated. Absolutely loved your cup cake, excellently chocolately and moist – had it for breakfast the next morning, but I had to share the skull with hubby! Loved that it was solid. Cheers!

  • Leslie

    Good bloggin', lady! I'm excited to read more posts. Dooooork haaaands! (And look, a picture of me!)

  • cccris

    Bravo for this cool and sweet cupcakes!

  • Z!

    Wow Girl! You look fantastic! Those cupcakes looked amazing too and your writing made me feel like I was there at the event with you.
    It was like hearing your voice in the same room all over again! I look forward to checking in here for updates. Congrats on the win!

  • Jenny Burgesse

    Aww, thank you Zena! Good to hear from you again too! Hope everything is treating you well in the big city!

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