Winter party cupcakes. Photo: Abakedcreation, Flickr.
Originating in the U.S. in the 19th century, it is undetermined whether the dainty servings came to their name as a result of their use of ingredients by the cup or if they took the name of the glassware they were baked in. The cakes were also once dubbed "number" cakes, for their use of numerically expanding ingredients: one spoonful of soda, one cup of milk, one cup butter, two cups sugar, three cups flour and four eggs.
But as the cupcake trend continues to expand, the cakes have evolved further from their basic-recipe origins to take countless forms, with every flavoring imaginable and delightfully outlandish representations -- in a quick skim of our Slashfood Flickr pool, we found whimsical organic ones, Cookie Monster varieties, cocktail-inspired cakes, even burger doppelgangers! Take a look at our Slashfood cupcake coverage for inspiration -- admittedly, we're perhaps a little bit obsessed! -- or share your creative cupcake visions in the comments.
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