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Giant Cupcake Pan Invading Homes Across America?

Mar 23, 2008
This is an emergency message from the Culinary Warning System! If you have children in your home, you may be at risk of being invaded by the Giant Cupcake Cake Pan. This pan has been known to follow mothers home after appearing cute and adorable in kitchen stores across America

The suspect goes by the name of Giant Cupcake Cake pan by Wilton. It has been known to use the alias Dimensions® Large Cupcake Pan.

What are we to do with this thing? First let's start with the basics.

As an avid baker, I am always looking for new ways to remove the boring cake from my repertoire.

This pan is among the cast aluminum line. In general, I love these types of pans. I have some cast aluminum pans for baking cakes, pound cakes, and quick breads. The most popular are by Nordicware.

In this case, Wilton has created a whimsical shape that is very unique. It of course looks like a large cupcake. It is tapered at the top and somewhat tapered toward the bottom. It is split into two halves - allowing for even baking throughout and for easy construction after it finishes baking. The top half is spiraled - this allows for easy decorating. As you see in the photos available the level of decorating is limited only by your imagination.

The pan performs about as one would expect. The volume amounts are variable. I have seen 10 cups and 6 ½ cups listed on a couple of web sites. The 10 cups is total volume possible and the 6-½ cup is the practical amount to be poured into the pan. This allows for room to rise.

Don't believe the hype about the nonstick surface making for easy release. Use butter and flour or a spray like Baker's Joy inside. With these detail design pans, cakes want to stick in the groves. You must use something to ease extraction.

The depth of the pan at 3 ¾ inches will affect the baking time. While this isn't an outrageous depth, it is larger than normal and requires a "low and slow" approach.

In this case one bakes at 325F for 60 to 70 minutes. It is necessary to adhere to this approach or risk a cake over baked on the outside and under baked on the inside (giant lava cake anyone?).

One method of preparation is to split the batter and cook the whole thing for the same length of time. Some have said they put the batter in the "bottom" half first, bake for about 10 minutes or so and then pour the remaining batter in the "top" half and continue baking until done. Their desire was to even out the cooking process. The "top" half does narrow down at the point and could bake too fast. The results with the split method were good, so try both ways and see which works best for you.

After baking, allow the two halves to cool completely before decorating. To decorate, place the bottom piece small side down and top with your icing of choice. Next, place the top half on and then proceed to decorate as your imagination dictates.

The finished product was indeed attractive, surprisingly so. It was not as big as I had visualized, but nevertheless nice. The "cupcake" will be 7-1/4" wide by 7-1/2" tall when you finish.

As to the initial thought that this would be great for young kids, I don't think so. Why? Well, this is why they invented cupcakes in the first place: to give each child a small manageable serving without the hassle of slicing the cake and serving small children something that requires forks to eat. This cake tapers from the middle at both top and bottom and would not make for easy slicing to serve to small children. Regular cupcakes also allow for more diverse decorating possibilities where children can choose from different colored frostings and sprinkles. It also allows for small hands to help decorate. And again regular cupcakes are truly finger friendly food.

This pan would be great for small groups of friends and family where you don't want a full size cake. It would also make a great centerpiece, surrounded by traditional cupcakes - regular or mini - size doesn't matter. Surrounding the large cake size cupcake with concentric circles of smaller cupcakes would make for a cool visual.

You can, of course, do whatever you want.

How does it taste? This will be determined by the type of cake recipe used and how well the cake was baked.

Ultimately, I was skeptical of this pan, at first. I was convinced it was just a gimmick that would fade out of sight quickly as I am always this way with limited use, whimsically shaped pans. In the end, I think it could provide years of good use for children's birthdays and other functions.

One additional thought is that due to its unusually long shape it could be challenging to store this pan, but if storage space is not an issue for you then buy and use it with joy.

It retails for anywhere from $27 to $32.

To see photos, ask questions or to purchase, please visit my website at www.kitchenboy.net .
About the Author
I am an experienced cook and baker, who works in Culinary sales. I also write product reviews and provide information about the various tools and gadgets available for the consumer on my website WWW.KITCHENBOY.NET .
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