Zhinus Delights Bakery Shares How To Create Cupcake Baskets

by | Jun 2024

Cup by cup, petal by petal, Zhinus Vafai creates beautiful desserts to share—or treat yourself!

Cup by cup, petal by petal, Zhinus Vafai creates beautiful desserts to share—or treat yourself! Photo: Chris Emeott

Kitchen connections create more than sweet treats.

The secret ingredient to many relationships can be found while gathered around a kitchen, sitting around a table sharing a meal or standing side by side baking or cooking new or tried-and-true recipes. The sense of belonging and touchpoints to family history are often associated with food. For Zhinus Vafai, part of her history was written in her childhood kitchen.

In Medina, the floral cupcakes from cottage bakery Zhinus Delights speak volumes. “Baking was something my mom and I always found was our way to connect,” Vafai says. “But, when I had my son, the definition of baking changed for me. His multiple food allergies meant I had to create cupcakes with substitutes for wheat flour, dairy and eggs.”

Vafai started creating her specialized baked goods at the request of neighbors and friends who needed something similar for their own celebrations. And that’s how she became a cottage baker, starting Zhinus Delights in March 2022 and becoming a local sensation thanks to allergy-sensitive cupcakes, adorned with her floral frosting creations.

Vafai’s mission is: “To spread the joy of delicious indulgence without limits.” She started by creating her allergy-sensitive cupcakes through trial and error, substituting ingredients while maintaining the delicious flavor everyone has come to expect in a cupcake.

Next, Vafai turned her attention to the frosting. “Floral frosting has to be firmer than traditional frosting,” she says. For an allergy-sensitive option, it’s best to make it yourself. “American buttercream [recipes] don’t have eggs like many grocery store frostings,” she says.

Vafai began refining the techniques that enable her to create daisies, roses, hydrangeas and carnations, just to name a few of the frosted flowers her cupcakes are famous for showcasing atop the divine cupcake creations.

In looking at her stunning creations, one can be tempted—beyond the inclination to take a bite, but to create for themselves such a lovely, sweet confection. For do-it-yourselfers, Vafai shares some tips to create a floral cupcake basket for special people or occasions that come your way this spring and summer. (Think: baby or bridal showers, birthday celebrations or “just because.”)

Icing on the Cupcake
  1. Choose a basket for six to seven cupcakes. Fill the bottom with florist foam or something firm to serve as a base. Wrap folds of tissue paper around the base to support the cupcakes.
  2. Vafai suggests rosettes or hydrangeas for beginners. Pastry tips and pastry bags can be found at hobby shops.
  3. Create petals, flowers and leaves to decorate each cupcake. Make sure the buttercream frosting has set for about 15 minutes before transferring the cupcake into the basket.
  4. Place the cupcakes in the basket, pulling the paper up along the sides to hold them in place.
  5. Share the love.

If creating isn’t your thing, Vafai can make a basket for you!

Zhinus Delights
Facebook: Zhinus Delights
Instagram: @zhinus.delights


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