A cupcake (or fairy cake) is a small cake designed to serve one person,
usually made in a small paper cup container. As with larger cakes, frosting
and other decorations are usually applied.
Cupcakes are often served during a
celebration, such as children's classroom birthday parties. They are a more
convenient alternative to cake because they don't require plates, utensils,
or dividing into pieces. Cupcakes were first invented in the early 1800's.
A simple cupcake uses the same ingredients as
most other standard cakes - incorporating butter, white refined sugar, eggs,
and flour. These are the main ingredients of a cupcake.
The name "cup" cakes or "measure" cakes
is believed to have developed because of the use of the practice of
measuring the ingredients using a standard-sized cup instead of the previous
practice of weighing the ingredients. The fact that these little cakes were
baked in cup-shaped muffin baking containers gave double-meaning to the term
"cup cake", and was probably the main factor for "cupcake" becoming the U.S.