Last Friday night I attended my friend’s birthday party where his fiance surprised him on stage of the show she was performing in with a song, and a cupcake topped with a plastic Superman ring and a lit candle. Yes, we are talking about a 37-year-old man, but it wasn’t the superhero theme of it all I was hating on, it was the store-bought cupcake. Dry, crumbly, bland, almost cornmeal-y, with sticky strangely red frosting.. we all unfortunately got one. Luckily our own superhero accessory on top saved the day (I rocked my Spidey ring for the rest of the night). But it reminded me of two things: one, that that no matter their age, guys will always be obsessed with Superheroes, and two… that I hadn’t had a good cupcake in far too long..so when Amber Gibson decided to blog about Naperville-based JenyLee CupCakery for her second guest post..I was thrilled…and even more so that she did her post interview-style… and ps..how cool is the word “cupcakery”?
“I’m obsessed with cupcakes and I’m kind of a floozy when it comes to Chicago’s cupcake bakeries. I’ll try any and all of them, and if there’s a new flavor, I’ve got to have it too. I never thought much of the suburban cupcake scene though. That is, until I tried my first JenyLee Cupcakery delivery-only cupcake. I was impressed by how moist all of her cakes are and her creative flavors.
Of the cupcakes I sampled, Peanut Butter Candy and Key Lime were my favorite. Key Lime was the perfect ode to the end of summer, while the peanut butter, which I was afraid might be too rich, was just right. Reese’s pieces inside and on top were the perfect touch to this decadent cupcake.
Cherry Chocolate Chip was like Cherry Garcia (my favorite ice cream flavor) in a cupcake and inspired me to do some baking of my own with fresh cherries. Next time, I need to try her Tiramisu, Pistachio and Salted Caramel flavors. Salted Caramel is JenyLee’s flavor of the month, with a portion of the proceeds going to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
Jeny Lee of JenyLee CupCakery
Past life: Project manager at Tellab’s for 13 years
Café du Monde moment: Jeny was inspired by the success of New Orlean’s famous Cafe du Monde, which sells just beignets and coffee. “Why do I have to do cakes? Dinosaurs and Dora? I don’t have to do any of that stuff. I can do what I do best.” Mardi Gras colors also inspired her website.
Milestone: June 2011 marked her one-year anniversary, and JenyLee Cupcakery is still a one-woman show. “ It’s still hard, I’m still at a make or break point. Cash flow is becoming an issue, but I’m going to stick it out as long as I can.”
Brick-and-mortar: While her own bakery is still in the works, you can soon taste JenyLee’s cupcakes at the SciTech Hands On Museum. The perfect solution for those who want to buy just one or two cupcakes as opposed to ordering by the half-dozen.
Favorite Chicago cupcakery: Molly’s Cupcakes. “Molly’s has not failed me ever.”
New flavor: French Toast. “There’ll be maple syrup and bacon. I want to get it out there before anyone steals my idea!”