Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Japanese Garden Cupcakes

I have a lot of awesome memories from back when I used to be in college and one of them is these Japanese Garden cupcakes. Before you try to relate college and Japanese inspired cupcakes together, let me just explain. Once upon a semester at business school I was taking a Cross Cultural Challenges in Business class. Sometime around mid semester our professor gave us a presentation assignment. She formed us into groups and then assigned us a country each to present. We were to look into how the country is different from the US and how and why the differences could pose challenges if a US company conducted business there. My group got assigned Japan and for some fun in class we decided to bring over some edible surprises. A friend of mine who was Korean suggested a Green Tea flavored Kit Kat. Yuckhhhhh! The thought was disgusting but we ordered them to distribute them in class and then decided I'd bring some cupcakes which would be inspired by Japan!

I was super excited to get a chance to bake for people other than my family. These would be absolute strangers from class tasting my creations and looking at my work. Wow! I asked my professor how many people we had in class total and then baked fresh, delicious, vanilla cupcakes which were full of chocolate chips. Yummm yummm!

According to our research and the material our professor had provided us, the country Japan is known for the metaphor 'The Japanese Garden'. So I knew I wanted to use that as my inspiration and theme for these cupcakes. Now, I'm talking about my college days which means this is from the year 2014. I still wasn't as much of a pro at decoration as I am today and back then fondant was still in my 'too-difficult' zone. So I was limited with what all I could do and yet these cupcakes were a BIG hit! My inspiration came from the famous Japanese Cherry Blossoms, the Japanese flag, and the colors of the flag and I presented my cupcakes in red boxes side by side so that they reminded everyone of Japanese Sushi places! It was a really cute idea and the entire collection looked so pretty! Time for some close ups! Notice the colors and the flags and the flowers!

Check out the Cherry Blossoms inspired cupcake! So cute!

Now let me tell you a secret. Well, it's not a secret because I'm blogging about it! *laughs* I'm terrible at geography and geography related stuff. You ask me to recognize flags and I will not be able to except for like three countries. *laughs* No kidding! I'm horrible. Sometimes I don't even know whether it's a country or a city which somebody is naming. So when I was given Japan as my theme I googled their flag. I was SO HAPPY! I think I've never been happier seeing a country's flag ever before. Know why? Because it was the simplest flag and that meant I could easily create a cupcake topper out of it. I made some white candy clay at home, measured and cut it into rectangles, and then painted red circles in the center and we had Japanese flags ready! Tadaaaaaaa! Sweet and simple!

They looked so awesome!

I thought displaying them like a Sushi bar was a fabulous idea. They looked so Japan-ish! When I took these to class I kept them hidden in a giant bag until we were done with the presentation. The presentation went really well but the cupcakes were an even bigger hit. People LOVED the cupcakes. I was asked a million questions about whether I'd done the decorating myself, whether I had a business, whether I'd baked them from scratch, and even whether they could grab two or more in one go! *laughs* It felt great! When everyone was done admiring the cupcakes and grabbing at least one for themselves I went and took my seat again. Then I sat and looked around and witnessed a great scene. Everyone was enjoying MY cupcakes. Some of the girls were snapping pictures of their cupcakes, some of the students were digging into the cupcakes and literally closing their eyes to take in the deliciousness. It was such a proud and happy moment for me! My cupcakes. My work. Such a big hit! LOVELY!

All the mouth-watering pictures in this post are original Sara's Baked Creations' content. Please have some shame and refrain from copying, recreating, and cheating without giving proper credit and mention!
Sara’s Baked Creations is on Mission Sweetness! Sara and Abbie are hobby bakers who bake for friends and family only. We are not a commercial bakery business; it gives us joy to spread smiles while enjoying sisterhood and living our passion for baking.

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This entry belongs to the April A to Z Blogging Challenge 2018.
For a full list of all of my entries this year click here!


  1. I love how the cup cakes were coordinated but that you used a variety of decorations for them. Looks like it was a great way to end your presentation. Weekends In Maine

  2. They’re so cute and so Japan inspired! Great idea.


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