History of Cupcakes

Learn the history of cupcakes from professional cake decorator Amanda Oakleaf in this Howcast video.

Hi, my name is Amanda Oakleaf. I am owner, head baker and decorator of Amanda Oakleaf cakes in Winthrop, Massachusetts, where we do cupcakes, custom cakes, wedding cakes, birthday cakes, anything you can think of we can make it into a cake. And today, I will be talking to you about baking cupcakes. The history of the cupcake can be attributed to two things. The first is that back in the eighteen hundreds before they had the modern oven, cupcakes were originally baked in ceramic teacups or ramekins, so individual cups of cake, because the ovens were not advanced enough to bake a full-sized cake without burning. The second being about the same time, they switched from weighing ingredients in pounds and ounces to measuring with measuring cups in a method that was called the one two three four method, which is one cup of buter, two cups of sugar, three cups of flour and four eggs. And that was their basic recipe, which also evolved from the weighing version, which is the pound cake, which is a pound of sugar a pound of flour. So that kind of derived from there. Once the modern ovens advanced, then we had the use of muffin tins or cupcake pans where you can bake a dozen at once, and the ovens bake more evenly. People have been baking cupcakes since the middle of twentieth century. They’ve been popular for kids’ birthdays and weddings and stuff but the real craze probably started in the last twenty years or so with the gourmet cupcake, where the cupcake tastes like something else. It tastes like pie, it tastes like cookies, it tastes like tiramisu and all different sorts of flavors. Cupcake shops have popped up all over the place. And us, we bake custom cakes, but we also sell cupcakes in our store because it’s really fun to have bite sized portions of cake.