Thanks in part to Sex and the City, no doubt, the cupcake craze continues. New York alone has countless cupcake bakeries -- from Magnolia Bakery to Billy's, Sugar Sweet Sunshine, and Crumbs. A handful of cupcake-only blogs have popped up, Martha herself published a cupcake cookbook last year and the Food Network launched a new reality competition, Cupcake Wars, which pits cupcake bakers against each other. Even NBC New York reported that growth in the city's restaurant and bar industry in June could be attributable to -- what else? -- cupcakes.
This week, Huffington Post blogger and pastry chef Jennifer McCoy boldly wrote that she's a little tired of cupcakes. And as someone whose true baked good love is pies, I get it
I mean, I have a massive sweet tooth and would never turn down a good baked good but, at the same time, I don't understand why cupcakes get all the attention.
Loyal cupcake fans, take note: I'm not suggesting we get rid of them completely. I just wouldn't mind seeing another baked good get its moment to shine.
My suggestions for a successor:
Cheesecake. (They make mini springform pans! It could happen!) Think about it: A little graham cracker crust nestled in a cupcake-like wrapper topped with a soft layer of cream cheese. Like cupcakes, they come in many varieties -- lemon, peanut butter, pumpkin, peppermint -- so you're not stuck with New York style, and there are plenty of holiday options.
Brownies. Brownies are like flatter, denser cake. Sometimes they even come with frosting. And brownies, too, have variations -- cheesecake, peanut butter, etc. And there's so much chocolate. It's hard to go wrong.
Cannoli. Like a black and white cookie, it's quintessentially New York. And since it's an item relegated to select city bakeries, a good chain with a decent following could make a killing in cannoli-free zones. You'd have to have decent shells, but there's tons of wiggle room with the filling. And they're totally portable.
Mini Pies or Tartlets. I find if you're going to the trouble of baking a pie, it's never that much more work to make two or three. And think how many you could make if you were doing small ones!
Cookies. Could it be time for a renaissance? It's been a long time since Mrs. Fields parlayed her passion into a multi-million-dollar enterprise. Cookies get a reputation for being a little blasé -- and they can be -- but I recently found a lemon-white-chocolate-coconut cookie at Whole Foods that was amazing and I think proves there's still room for innovation in the cookie space.
Are you tired of cupcakes?
Image via corrie0227/CafeMom