Cherry Chip Blossom Cupcakes, #SundaySupper

With the flowering of Japanese cherry blossoms (sakura) in Japan, poetry, songs, picnics and sweets flood the marketplace. The Sakura, Sakura (cherry blossom) lullaby is the infant’s introduction to music.

As Megadeth rock band ’s former guitarist Marty Friedman will confirm, mothers and grannies are not the only ones singing about cherry blossoms. On a recent Japanese TV show (?????????????? Hard to Say Things, Clearly Stated), Marty Friedman served on a panel with other pop rock experts. All laughed about Japan’s fascination with cherry blossoms. Practically every other popular song on J Pop charts contains the word sakura! Here’s a snappy 10 Year Sakura (10?? ) sung by popular J-Pop girl group AKB48.

As reflected in Japan’s ancient gardens and modern parks, there is a reverence for nature. Cherry blossom trees hold an extra-special place in the heart of Japanese. The pale petals of the sakura are beautiful to behold. Like life, the blossoms seem to be gone in the blink of an eye. The sakura are exquisite reminders of the ephemeral nature of existence.

Sakura cherry blossoms in Japan.

Photo courtesy of

But, the cherry blossoms are not simply for serious contemplation. Sakura-viewing picnics are often boisterous. Song and sake rice wine flow freely as an orange sunset highlights the petite, pretty pink cherry blossoms…The preferred alcohol served at Independence Day picnics may be beer and singing may not be as prevalent in the U.S. Yet the good feelings of enjoying life with those you love is the same on both sides of the Pacific.

At today’s #SundaySupper at Twitter, people from around the world are gathering around a virtual picnic blanket. (Please scroll down for details about your invite to #SundaySupper fun.) The creator of always fantastic looking food, Jane of Jane's Adventures in Dinner hosts.

Treat your family like royals with Cherry Blossom Chip Cupcakes

What’s on the #SundaySupper picnic menu? Mainly dishes and desserts for Independence Day (in the U.S.) and Canada Day (celebrating the unification of the Canadian colonies.) I am going somewhat rogue however and bringing Cherry Blossom Chip Cupcakes. Pink cupcakes may not be a very patriotic contribution…But the cherry blossom chip cupcakes do boast a soft crumb dotted with melted cherry chips. 

The Cherry Blossoms Chip Cupcake boasts a tantalizing soft crumb.  

And my frosting with its whipped cream cheese base will leave you extra calories to enjoy a bigger serving of potato salad!

Cherry Blossom Cupcakes

With a cake crumb as soft as the petal of a cherry blossom, this cupcake is a cause for celebration. The not-so-sweet frosting base is whipped cream cheese complements the sweet cake perfectly.

Adapted from the 1-2-3-4 cake recipe at

Cherry baking chips are available at Amazon. Feel free, however, to substitute your favorite butterscotch, chocolate or peanut butter chips to make the cupcakes blossom in flavor for you.


For the cupcakes:?

  • 3 cups sifted cake flour (do not substitute with self-rising flour)?
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 sticks of unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 large room temperature eggs, separated
  • ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 cup cherry Greek yogurt
  • ½ cup culinary coconut milk + 1 tablespoon

Tip: Reduce the milk if using regular coconut milk or almond milk.
Culinary coconut milk is slightly thicker than regular coconut milk.

  • 1 ½ teaspoons cherry extract
  • 1 ½ cups cherry baking chips

For the frosting:

  • 1 (8-ounce) tub of whipped cream cheese
  • 1 (5.3-ounce) carton of cherry Greek yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons powdered cherry gelatin
  • 6 tablespoons powdered sugar (more if you like very sweet frosting)

For the cherry blossom cut-outs:

  • Pink fondant
    Cherry blossom vegetable cutters are available at Etsy. (Amazon also sells them for a few more dollars.)

For the cupcakes:
Sift the already sifted cake flour with the baking powder and salt. Set aside.

Cream the butter with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. (About one minute.) Add the sugar a tablespoon at a time. Look for a lovely pale yellow color to emerge. Beat in the egg yolks one at a time.

In another bowl, beat the egg whites. When foam arises, add the cream of tartar. Allow the whites to form soft peaks.

Meanwhile, alternate adding the flour mixture with the yogurt/coconut milk to the butter/sugar/egg yolks combination until well combined.

Gently fold in the soft peaked egg whites.

Stir in the baking chips.

Divide the batter into cupcake cases. Bake at 350 degrees for 28 minutes. This recipe yields 31 cupcakes.

For the frosting:
Fluff up the whipped cream cheese with an electric mixer. Add the remaining ingredients until well combined. Place the frosting in a piping bag and swirl onto cooled cupcakes.

For the fondant:
Roll the fondant on a corn starch or powdered sugar covered cutting board. Punch out cherry blossom cut-outs as garnish for the frosted cupcakes.

More picnic pleasures:







Sandwiches and Wraps


Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more fabulous recipes and food photos. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Cherry Blossom Chip Cupcakes taste  best when shared.

Wishing you moments to pause and savor this precious life.

The Ninja Baker

© ™ Watkinson 2012

The Ninja Baker has guest blogged and contributed recipes to numerous food sites. These additional recipes can be found here.



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