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Up until recently, Lindsey and I’s growing skills rested primarily in decorating cakes, not baking them from scratch.  Now that we’re diving into our hobby deeper, we’ve decided it’s about time to throw out our boxed cake mixes and bring in some fresh ingredients along with some new ideas.  In an attempt to spark some creativity, I posted a question on facebook, asking our friends what their favorite cake flavors were.  As you see here, my Dad was quick to reply with a unique request of Banana Nut cake with walnuts and a caramel drizzle.  Yum!  Little did he know that I would put his plan into action just three days later!  Lucky for him, I was hosting a brunch after my son Noah’s dedication at church that following sunday.  Obviously, he was fully aware of the brunch, but unaware of my plans to make him some sort of banana nut cupcakes.

My original plan for the brunch was to make traditional vanilla cupcakes with standard buttercream frosting.  When I read my Dad’s idea for a cake, I instantly realized that something banana nut would make a much better dessert for a morning affair.  So I ditched the traditional idea and got out my cupcake cookbook by Martha Stewart to find some more inspiration.  Lucky me, I found this lovely recipe for Banana Pecan cupcakes with a Caramel Buttercream frosting!  Sounds like a perfect match to me!  So I dialed up Lindsey and as with all of each other’s baking ideas, she was in!

Something I learned real fast into this adventure is how many ingredients it takes to make a cake from scratch!  Check it out…

My initial reaction:  not worth it.  My end reation:  Delicious and TOTALLY worth it!  While this may have quadrupled the money involved and doubled the time, it did even more for the flavor and for the personal touch!  Making cakes from scratch opens up a whole world of doors into different flavors.  Exciting!

So as with any cupcake cake that you’ve seen us do, first things first.  Line up the cupcakes and secure them to the board with a dabble of frosting…

Then, using my very favorite ginormous decorating tip, Lindsey and I applied the frosting to the cake…

Then, we smoothed it out with a spatula…

Finished it up with some simple details, and voila!…

It was delicious and was the perfect combination of flavors for a morning treat.  Not too sweet at all like the vanilla cupcakes and standard buttercream may have been.  I’d have to say it was an absolute success and that I can’t wait to try our next unique flavor!

So tell us… what is YOUR favorite cake flavor?  You never know when it might show up!