After a good month of macaron munching in March, we’re diving straight back into cupcake mode! It’s been months since my last Cupcake Connection post and while I’ve continued eating cupcakes (c’mon, it’s ME we’re talking about here), I couldn’t take photos of a few of them (I know, foreshame. It was late and dark when I was eating them and one of them even got squished! Very delicious, but so not sexy) and I have a bit of backlog going on with the ones I did take photos of so bear with me while I sort everything out over the next month.
There’s a LOT to catch up on, so much so that it feels overwhelming at times. So many cupcakes, so little time! Luckily for me, I have the support of many of my favourite cupcake shops giving me the goods to pass along to all of you so we’ll never be at a loss for great cupcake news. We have quite a bit to cover (this is Part I of II!) so let’s jump right in and get started!
You’ll Need a Wheelbarrow to Carry All of These – New Flavours and Flavours of the Month
Just when I think I’ve made a little bit of headway in trying the many cupcakes and flavours in Toronto, I get whip-lashed with a whole truckload of new and exciting flavours! Seriously, it’s 1 step forward, 5 steps back! But tis the spice of life and I wouldn’t want it any other way because without new fun and creative flavour combinations, the cupcake scene would get boring real fast and that’s the last thing any of us want. Let’s start with Prairie Girl Bakery. Talk about busting out the sweet treats! Prairie Girl has unleashed 7, count ’em, SEVEN new Treats of the Week flavours ($2.95 for regular size, $1.75 for minis) to their rotating menu! HOLY MOTHER OF PEARL. These 7 flavours include:
Blueberries & Cream (Golden Buttermilk Cupcake with a swirl of Real Blueberry Icing and a swirl of Classic Cream Cheese Icing, topped with a Chocolate Blueberry)
- Chocolate Coconut (Dark Cocoa Cupcake with Vanilla Bean Icing topped with Toasted Coconut)
- Chocolate Flake (Red Velvet Cake with Vanilla Bean Icing topped with Chocolate Flakes)
- Grasshopper Pie (Dark Cocoa Cupcake with Green Mint Icing topped with Cookie Crumble)
- Malted Milk (Dark Cocoa Cupcake with Malted Milk Icing topped with a Maltesar)
- Neapolitan (Dark Cocoa Cupcake with a swirl of Real Strawberry Icing and a swirl of Vanilla Bean Icing)
Tiramisu (Golden Buttermilk Cupcake with Tiramisu Icing, Marsala Wine Syrup topped with Chocolate Flakes)
I would inhale all of these, but the ones I am most excited about are the Blueberries & Cream, Grasshopper Pie, and Malted Milk. Prairie Girl has rolled a few of these out already this month so if you’ve missed them, don’t fret – their Treats of the Week operate on a rotating menu so they’ll always come back and you can know in advance now on their website where they list their upcoming Treats of the Week 4 weeks in advance which I ABSOLUTELY LOVE!
Next on the list? Yummy Stuff on Queen Street West. Their April Flavour of the Month ($2.75) is an ultra cool, psychedelic Cherry Almond Cake! And I do mean psychedelic. We’re talking bright turquoise vanilla frosting topped with juicy red maraschino cherries on cherry-studded almond cake. I could float up to cupcake heaven right now. I LOVE almond baked goods and this sounds and looks amazing (you can check out the photo Yummy Stuff posted on their blog HERE).
A little further south you’ll find For the Love of Cake, where they’ve brought back their classic S’mores and my beloved Lemon Meringue cupcakes ($2.65) for the month of April (and if demand is high, possibly for even longer!). The Lemon Meringue was the very first flavour I tried at For the Love Cake back in 2009 (can you believe it’s been that long?!) and it remains, to this day, one of my favourite cupcakes. Annnnd speaking of S’mores, my dear Short & Sweet Cupcakes has added two mouthwatering flavours ($2.90) to their permanent menu on Fridays (Boston Cream!) and Sundays (S’mores!). It pains me that I haven’t tried either of them yet so let’s hope that I can sink my sweet teeth into at least one of them in the coming months!
And then there’s Dessert Lady in the heart of Yorkville. They’ve expanded their selection to include 3 NEW flavours ($3):
- Double Chocolate Cupcake with Hazelnut Crunch Buttercream
- Passionfruit Cupcake with Caramelized White Chocolate Buttercream
- Sweet Corn Bacon Cupcake with Salted Caramel Popcorn Buttercream (SAY WHAT?!)
And here I am thinking maple bacon cupcakes were way out there – this 3rd flavour knocks it out of the park! If you love wild and wacky flavours, especially sweet and savoury combinations, I think you’ve met your match and I dare you to try it and report back!
Community and Cupcake Shops – Giving Back
Cupcake shops are more than just lace and frills. Many establishments are partnering with different organizations in and around the city to make a difference in their communities. Prairie Girl Bakery and So Into Cupcakes in Scarborough have both formed relationships with charitable organizations and programs in an effort to help others and to further deepen their growing engagement within the food community. Prairie Girl Bakery and Second Harvest are joined at the hip via ongoing donations, and are also affiliated with the following causes:
- The Women in Capital Markets/Dress for Success event (https://www.wcm.ca/default.aspx?tabid=10000115&eventid=10000267)
- Parkinson’s Society of Canada Cut-a-Thon (https://www.cutathon.ca/emergency_shutdown.html)
- The Bike for Tykes annual event (http://coasttocoastagainstcancer.org/bft/)
- The Wellspring Cancer Support Foundation fashion show (http://www.wellspring.ca/)
And more recently, So Into Cupcakes has partnered with Toronto’s Fresh City Farms! I found out about this through their Facebook page and it’s wonderful as more and more people are signing up to have fresh, local, organic produce delivered to their homes. These memberships not only support our farmers, they provide ongoing support to local food co-ops and local food organizations.
Phew! That was a lot to get through and we’re not even close to being finished. Thankfully, there’s always room for Part II so stay tuned for more delicious cupcake news!