Spell out a birthday wish or whatever your celebration calls for with homemade dot letters on a big bunch of cupcakes. The colorful letters (and numbers) are made of tinted royal icing piped onto parchment paper and allowed to harden before they’re placed atop the cupcakes. To save time on the day of the party, pipe the decorations the day before.
- Yield: 35
- 36 cupcakes, such as Yellow Buttermilk or One-Bowl Chocolate
- 2 recipes Cream-Cheese Frosting or Fluffy Vanilla Frosting
- 2 recipes Royal Icing
- Gel-paste food color (orange, pink, red, and blue are pictured)
- Divide royal icing among four bowls. Tint each portion a different color (keep icing covered while working to prevent it from drying). Transfer to four separate piping bags fitted with small plain tips (#3), pressing to remove air and sealing tops of bags with rubber bands. Rest tips of pastry bags in glasses with damp paper towels in the bottoms.
- You will need to create a template with your message printed on it; be sure the numbers and letters are spaced well apart (for easy piping). Tape template to a work surface. Tape a sheet of parchment or waxed paper over the template. Pipe solid lines of icing to follow the shape of a letter or number, tracing the template, then pipe dots close together over the piped solid lines. Continue for all the letters or numbers, piping with different colors as desired. Let dry at least 3 hours or overnight.
- Using an offset spatula, spread cupcakes generously with a smooth layer of frosting. Using a clean offset spatula, gently lift a royal icing letter or number from paper and place on each cupcake. Decorate extra cupcakes with one or several dots, using tinted royal icing and plain tips in different sizes. Decorated cupcakes will keep up to 1 day in the refrigerator in airtight containers; bring to room temperature before serving.