Counter Intelligence: GIANT CUPCAKES!!!!

So, I might not know much about cooking,* but I've managed to learn a few tricks of the trade. As mentioned, I worked for a brief and inglorious time as a short-order cook at a college pub, where recipes were essentially colored photos the managers put together and times needed for the fryer (I attribute this to the low point in my love affair with french fries). There I trained (actually, trained) under a real-life chef, a charming middle-aged Irish man with infinite patience for college students with demonstrably poor hand-eye coordination. Through Chef Martin I glimpsed a world where "soup" did not include ramen, and tall paper hats were a sign of status rather than lunacy. He also taught me about the myriad benefits of proper equipment, the kind of fancy Dean&DeLucca-style cookware that I tend to think I will worry about when I have to register someday. I am not engaged, nor can I afford to cook with something where its use is not immediately and obviously apparent.

But! While I am far from an "expert," I do have two eyes and an appreciation for things that are pretty and nicely designed (courtesy my design-o-guru brother). In another desperate grasping-at-straws-here column, I'll take a look at my favorite cookware or cookware-inspiredware. Today: Wilton's cupcake cast pan.

Take a look.

"eaaaat meeee"

"A cupcake," you might say. "So?" No--it's not a cupcake! (also this is not an appropriate response to seeing a cupcake. The only correct response is glee, hunger) It's a Giant Cupcake!!! There's a cake pan in the shape of a cupcake! You can make a cake! that is really a giant cupcake! For someone who likes cupcakes (guess who?), this is pretty much the best news on the planet. I imagine I'll have a kid some day, and when that day happens I look down fondly at its squishy little face and say "This reminds me of the day I learned about giant cupcakes..."

The Wilton Giant Cupcake Cast Pan ($30, at Target), comes with two halves for the ridgy bottom and swirly top that you stack on top of each other.

The features say:
Professional weight, cast aluminum for exceptional detail.
Premium non-stick surface for easy release and cleanup
Bake in Style with this; Novelty Cake Pan
Perfect for Baking
Made of Aluminum
Dishwasher Safe

None of this means that much to me although I am wondering what else you would use it for other than baking (puppy pool? large dog food bowl?). Since I haven't tried it out myself (the check, as they say, is in the mail), I had to rely on the reviews of others. Cons seem to be: it's not that giant, you need 2 cake boxes, the top finishes faster than the bottom. Pros: it is a-dor-a-ble, small children will love you forever, easy to make.
In summation, the Wilton Giant Cupcake Cast Pan is a must for cupcake aficionados and grinches whose hearts need to grow by at least 2 sizes. Once I have gotten my Wilton Giant Cupcake Cast Pan and made a house out of giant cupcakes, I'll offer another review. Until then, stay Counter Intelligent!**

* Response to news about my blog: "the girl whose twitter status recently was 'how do you defrost chicken anyway? i hope i don't get food poisoning' is starting a recipe blog? i hope you don't get sued."
**That's a try-out sign off so don't judge me. Alternative sign off suggestions can be left in the comments, where I'm sure no one will actually leave a comment. w00t!

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