If you aren't up to speed on what the Transportation Security Administration has labeled Cupcakegate, here's a quick synopsis. Traveler Rebecca Hains of Peabody, Mass., last month had a cupcake confiscated as she passed through airport security at McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas. The TSA maintains the cupcake raised suspicions because it came in a jar and contained "gel-like" frosting that was deemed to have exceeded the 3-ounce limit.
Enter the TSA Compliant Cupcake, a new product from Silver Spoon Bakery in Providence, R.I. "We wanted to take a tongue-in-cheek look at what the ideal cupcake would be to be TSA compliant," Silver Spoon owner Kelly Colgan says Thursday. "Cupcakes are a fun product."
Colgan redesigned the cupcake with security in mind. It's made of basic vanilla bean cake topped with exactly 3 ounces of frosting and packaged in a standard 3-1-1 one-quart see-thru bag. It costs $4 and even comes with its own boarding pass -- and, if you like, comes decorated (see photo) with a Richard Nixon photo and the words "I am not a gel" or other security-related message.
Colgan bristles at the thought of the sweet stuff having terrorist overtones. "I am not a gel, I am frosting, I am icing, I am harmless, I am confectioners sugar and butter!" she says.
But how would someone know which cupcakes are innocent and which ones are evil? Leave that to the TSA. "The bottom line is that you can bring cakes, pies and cupcakes through the security checkpoint, but you should expect that they might get some additional screening, and if something doesn’t seem right, there is always the potential you won’t be able to take it through," Bob Burns writes on the agency's blog.
Silver Spoon, which has no storefront, delivers all of its goods throughout Rhode Island. So if you want a TSA Compliant Cupcake, you can order one and have it delivered to the airport. No word yet on whether they do or don't meet TSA standards because no one has yet taken one on a plane, Colgan says.
Stay tuned ...