Such excitement! In the massive crowds, Bebe got a little “lost” because the torch came through just as she was to be picked up from school by my mom and they couldn’t find one another in the massive crowds. Let’s just say there were tears but it wasn’t for very long because they soon found one another.
The mini cupcakes I made kind of look like the Olympic torch. They’re moist white cake with a white simple buttercream swirl and decorated with a tiny maple leaf on top.
Just like Canadians, these cupcakes may be unassuming outside, but inside, there’s something sweet and exciting!
I managed to squish into the mini cupcakes as much seedless raspberry jam as they would take before exploding. I used a special tip I bought that is designed specifically for piping fillings into goodies. It’s a 230 Wilton tip. You can’t see the jam from outside. When you take a bite, the cross-section shows you the jam and it looks like a flame too!
We’ve got event tickets: prelim Hockey—Canada vs. Norway, speed skating and figure skating. The girls are pumped and the whole family will be dressed in red. I’ll plaster maple leaf tattoos on their faces. This is a once in a lifetime event for our family. We’ll never see another Olympics in our lifetime and we decided we’d make the best of it and see as much as we can.
Being born in Vancouver, and having travelled around the world, I realize how lucky we are to live where we do. The climate is mild and there are so many outdoor activities and things to do. Sure, other places are beautiful too or cosmopolitan, but we seem to have it all: great food, natural beauty, a multicultural community, a hip urban scene and opportunities to play in the water, hike up the mountains, ski in the snow and bike or walk along our many trails on land…all in the same day sometimes! So every time I get off the plane from a trip, I give a sigh of relief. It is definitely home and there’s no other place I’d like to live and raise my family.
Students have on occasion asked me where I’m from. This is a common question in multicultural Vancouver because it is a city teeming with immigrants. My answer always, is that I’m Canadian (through and through.) I was born here, I was educated here and my values are distinctly formed as Canadian. I am not ashamed to call myself Canadian and I don’t even bother to hyphenate myself like so many other people I know: Chinese-Canadian, Italian-Canadian, Indo-Canadian, German-Canadian. I am simply Canadian. I’m not turning my back on my heritage, but Canadian is what I am. We’re all immigrants except for the First Nations people and Inuit. The question should not be “Where are you from?” but “How long has your family been in Canada?” I see my identity as Canadian first.
Go Canada Go!
If you can’t get out to the events, there’s still an opportunity to celebrate the Olympic spirit as you’re cheering your team on. Just make these easy-peasy cupcakes and your family and friends will be cheering for you.
VANCOUVER 2010 TORCH CUPCAKES
adapted from “Easy Yellow Cupcakes” (from The Artful Cupcake, by Marcianne Miller)
- 2 1/4 cups sifted cake flour
- 1 1/4 cup sugar
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup milk
- 2 eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350 degreesF and prepare the muffin pans with nonstick spray and flour or paper cups. [I used a mini cupcake pan and lined with paper candy cups]
- In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt until thoroughly blended.
- Whisk together the oil and milk and add to the dry ingredients. Beat for 2 minutes on medium speed.
- Add the eggs and vanilla and beat again for 2 minutes on medium.
- Pour the batter into the pans, filling at least halfway. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the cakes test done. [My mini cupcakes took 7-8 minutes. ]
- Remove the pans and turn out the cupcakes onto a wire rack to cool.
CLASSIC BUTTERCREAM FROSTING
- 6 oz (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 2 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 2 tablespoons milk
- Place the softened butter in a large bowl.
- Gradually add the sugar by sifting a small amount over the butter and stirring to incorporate. Continue until all the sugar is blended in.
- Beat hard with a wooden spoon or an electric mixer until the icing is pale and fluffy.
- Beat in the milk until smooth.
- cooled mini cupcakes
- classic buttercream frosting in a piping bag with a Wilton 1M tip
- seedless raspberry jam in a piping bag with a Wilton 230 tip
- Wilton “leaves” sprinkles…just pick out the red maple leafs please (it’s not “leaves” btw, it’s a Canadian grammatical anomaly like the Toronto Maple Leafs—that’s a hockey team fyi)
- Using the Wilton 230 tip, plunge the narrow tip 3/4 of the way down the tops of the cupcakes. Squeeze as much jam as you can into the cupcake. The jam will start to back up through the top of the cupcake, but that’s okay because you’ll cover it with buttercream later.
- Using the Wilton 1M tip, start from the outside edge of the the filled cupcakes and pipe the buttercream from the perimeter towards the centre, swirling as you go. If you’re like me, you’ll have top-heavy cupcakes. Yum!
- Throw a red maple leaf on the top. ta-daa!
- Go Canada Go!