**update!
These shave ice cupcakes were featured in the June 2012 issue of Food Network Magazine!

Wonder why the ice isn’t melting? It’s SUGAR!

My friend Cheryl was throwing her baby a first birthday and since our families are from Hawaii (1st birthdays are HUGE in Hawaii) and it was a Luau themed party, I thought I’d make…SHAVE ICE cupcakes! Traditional rainbow Hawaiian shave ice is red, yellow and blue – and sanding sugar is the perfect match!

ingredients:
Cupcakes (I used Very Vanilla Cupcakes, recipe – here.)
frosting
red sanding sugar
blue sanding sugar
yellow sanding sugar
4 oz styrofoam cups
red cocktail straws
wooden spoons

The key to making it look like shave ice is to go with the typical ‘rainbow’ shave ice colors. Yellow in the middle, flanked by red and blue on the side.

Place the sugars into separate bowls, then use a spoon to carefully stick the sugar to a freshly frosted cupcake. The tiny granules of the sanding sugar start to look like fine pieces of ice.

Once the cupcakes are frosted and sugared, place them into the 4oz styrofoam cups, this really helps make them look realistic…

but if you really want to put it over the top, add a thin red cocktail straw and a wooden spoon: two things which complete any shave ice and make these faux ones look VERY real. After searching and searching (I am a perfectionist as you know) I found the PERFECT wooden spoons at the WEBstaurant store! Thank goodness or I’d probably whittle them myself…don’t try me.

Lined up, they make a great addition to any summer dessert table. Best of all, they’ll never melt!