Tag Archives: Baking

March’s Creations

27 May

Continuing with my catch up posts by month here is what I worked on in March!

Have your Shoe and Eat it too!

Red and Black Stiletto Shoe CollageNot when I first started baking, my sweetie introduced me to one of his high school friends. She owns a event planning company. Thanks to her I have lots of cakes and treats to make!  So I get to make her Birthday cake. When she asked me it was right after I had ordered a Stiletto shoe kit from Way Beyond Cakes by Mayen. Now if you have never heard of Mayen you should know of her! She makes amazing cakes and supplies for cake decorating.  She has a great Etsy store, she is very helpful when you ask her questions and she lets you share pictures of her cakes on Wednesdays and Friday on her facebook page. Wait back to the cake.  So yes naturally I convinced her that I wanted to make her a shoe topper. She agreed! She loves strawberry and she loves coconut. So She got a strawberry cake with coconut buttercream filling… Oh and her own life size shoe, Size 7 to be exact!

Red and Black Stiletto Shoe

Blue and White Wedding Treats Table

If you read my last post I said these are becoming popular. I did these for a royal blue and white wedding.  Check out the photos. My friend who I made the shoe cake for she also does ballon arches so those are hers on the table.

Blue and White Wedding Treats Table

Winnie the Pooh Baby Shower Treats Table

…and one week later yep another one!

 

Winnie the Pooh Shower Treats table

February’s Creations

26 May

After what felt like an eternity orders began to come in and it got very busy very fast in the second month of the year.

Everyone Needs some Sparkle Zebra Print Gift Box Cake

This was a very fun cake to make. I feel like I have done enough zebra prints for it to be easy for me to do, but they wanted a gift box. Bows I do not normally do and to be honest this one was a pain, I had to be just right! It took a long time to put together because placement was important. I used the rhinestones and the balls to add a little more sparkle!Finished it off with some pearl spray.
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Mikey’s Camouflage Birthday Cake

Mikey's CakeMy little brother Mikey turned 13! he is a TEEN His favorite things to do are annoy his sisters, play soccer and he likes airsoft and paintball. The last two require some camouflage so I had to make him this camo cake. He wanted all his favorite things on it. Chocolate doughnuts, Oreos ( I crushed for dirt) and KitKats which I used for the M Mikey hates fondant so I spent quite a bit of time researching how to get this effect with butter cream. THE VIVA PAPER TOWEL METHOD is the trick. I think it came out pretty great for my first time.

Army man Mikeys cake 3

Pink Baby Shower Treats Table

These are starting to become some of my favorite things. Assorted variety of delicious treats in small quantities with candy and other yummy things on a table equals TREAT TABLE.  I plan on doing a post soon on Treat table 101 but until then the pictures will have to do.  The cupcakes were my favorite!

Strawberry Cupcakes with cream cheese frostingChocolate covered Strawberries

Choc. Cov.  Marshmallows

Chocolate covered pretzels

These Snowmen Don’t Melt! – Holiday Themed Cupcakes and Cookies

22 Dec

Happy Holidays! Need to bring some yummy and cute cheer to your holiday? Make these easy confections and you will be the hit of any party!

Snowmen Cupcakes

The actually all look different like a little family!

I found these on a great website Confessions of cookbook Queen. I mean she has all sorts of things on there.

Make your favorite cupcakes and frost them. I put a little extra on the top of  mine so the the hat would have some support. To make the hat, cut the bottom quarter off of a large marshmallow, and attach the larger peice to an Oreo with Candy Melts. Once the marshmallow is attached securely, I dipped the whole thing in melted Candy Melts (I used black, but you could also just use chocolate or any other fun color), sprinkled with shiny sprinkles ( or any other fun snow like topping) and set on wax paper to harden. *You can get candy melts and the eyes in the cake decorating aisle at Walmart  ( not the baking aisle this one is near all the party stuff) or Michael’s, Joann’s or AC Moore.

I found the covering of the hats to take a while because the dipping left finger prints and smudges all over. I used the back of a knife or a smooth edged spatula to smooth the chocolate around the sides. Just looked lumpy if I dipped it. After they are dry place on top of frosted cupcake. Finish the cupcakes with the eyes and red nose. My nose was a red sour ball ( I only find them in Walgreens for some reason) I did not want to use the red hots because these cupcakes were for kids and I personally don’t like them. But you could also use fondant, skittles or cut pieces of starburst and roll them into a ball after warming for 10 seconds in microwave. There you go Snowman cupcakes!


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Christmas or Holiday Tree Cupcakes

These were easier than the snowman cupcakes !

Bake your Cupcakes,  color your frosting Green.Use a 2D tip perpendicular to the cupcake to frost. Let the frosting stack up upon itself as you slowly pull the frosting bag up and there you have it a tree! Top your tree with some holiday colored sprinkles I used red but you can use larger round balled sprinkles to look like ornaments. No Christmas tree is a tree without a star! I used yellow fondant to cut out stars and place them atop my trees. DONE!

Tip from the Scientist: If you are Jewish no worries use white  or blue frosting and a blue or silver star with silver sprinkles.

Holiday Tree Cupcakes

 

Snowflake Cookies

What winter holiday is complete without cookies! Make your favorite roll and cut cookiedough. I make them from scratch but the baking aisle has cookies in a bag that can be used for this complete with instructions on how to make the batter into roll and cut dough which is a bit harder than drop cookie dough. Roll out your dough out putting a good amount of flour on the surface so the dough does not stick. Get your favorite cookie cutters, I used snowflakes.  Cut out the shapes, bake and cool. I find putting the cookie dough in the fridge when I am not working with it helped the dough stay firm.

This is my first time putting designs on cookies. I normally just smooth on the frosting as best I can with a spatula and call it a day. However one must challenge themselves in the kitchen! I was inspired by one of the blogs I follow Carrie’s Creations . She is an amazing cookie baker and decorator ! So I got out my piping bag using a #3 tip and made some snowflakes. Here are just a few!

Christmas Cookies

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Tiffany Boxes for a Bride to be…

11 Dec

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So I may have a wedding in August. My client wants 100 individual tiffany boxes. 100 INDIVIDUAL BOXES oh and a cake. Lets skip the fact that I probably wont be able to do all of that myself. If you are a cake decorator you know that 100 boxes means 100 cakes because each box is just a smaller cake. I just keep thinking ASSEMBLY LINE! I will have to fine a special space to use if I am selected to make these. Naturally she wanted to see some prototypes (I know I would) and also it was a good idea  for me to see how much work goes into these. Let’s just say baking the cake and cutting it into boxes was the easy part!

 

 

I baked the red velvet cake. Two 9X12 sheet cakes made 6 boxes ( I had to test one) I used my square biscuit cutter to cut the squares out after frosting the 3 layers with the cream cheese ganache. I used a white chocolate cream cheese ganache to frost the outside for a smooth edge. What was difficult about these was that every little error shows up if they are not perfectly smooth! I liked the one in the center the best.

Hope the Bride to be likes them all 🙂

Tiffany box 3

High School 10 year Class of 2002 Reunion Cake

3 Dec

High School Reunion cake

Morristown High School Class of 2002 congrats on your 10 year reunion! This was a fun cake to make. I just wish that someone did not bump into the cake box as I entered the venue and bent the letters on the front back:(  Don’t you hate when that happens. The school had a pool and boasted success  in many sports and theatre. This picture does not show but the sides were maroon lockers and there were even hand made books for the classes favorite subjects.

The top tier was a spiced rum cake (recipe here) and the bottom vanilla and red velvet cake. Man was that spiced rum layer delicious.

Here is to another 10 years MHS!

Its a Girl! – Leopard Print Baby Shower Cake and Cupcakes!

2 Dec

Leopard Print baby shower

This was a fun and easy cake to make. I made the spots buy cutting out the brown and black colors and rolling the colors into the fondant. The cupcakes were an almond buttercream with fresh cherries and amarettto cake. The cake was the same also filled with cherry almond buttercream. Boy did I have fun making these!  Cheers, Amaretto sour anyone!

Gumpaste crown

The crown was a pain in the  butt. I could have purchased a crown but I wanted to try making the crown from gum paste. I used a large round bottle and drew out my stencil on paper. I taped it onto the bottle  and covered it with saran wrap. (see picture)  I went to building. It was fine putting it on the bottle but once it was hardened it was hard to remove and all the parts did not stick together. It was very fragile so  I had to repair it over and over and over.  Every time I fixed a spot another place broke.

I guess the only thing I would have done differently is add more spots and also ditch the print on the cupcakes. I hand piped them on and then smoothed over using the viva paper towel method. It did not however come out as nice as I wanted. I want to make my treats neat and it is a constant battle. Next time if I had something similar I would make the decorations out of marshmallow fondant. As always when you are a baker you learn form mistakes. These mistakes are opportunities to get better.

Tip from the scientist: I find it hard to make a true black fondant and if you do a 50/50 gum paste mixture to get hardened designs mixing in white gum paste lightens the black. So once my designs are hardened, I hand paint them with black die diluted in water. This way the designs look truly black and not grey or green.

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Lights Camera…Popcorn!

11 Oct

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This cake made a cameo at Trey’s 10th Birthday party! This was my first number cake and it actually was not difficult. I found a great picture online that was quite useful.

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The Cake

First I baked each of the cakes. The one was a banana cake and the zero piña colada (coconut and pineapple. To make both of these I added coconut flavor and pineapple to one and 2 whole smashed bananas the other. I added these directly to my regular yellow cake batter adding 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda to correct for the additional materials. After baking I got to carving, frosting and covering!

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The CupCakes

Then the famous cupcakes were next. I decided to make popcorn, gold stars and red admission tickets for the decorations. The popcorn is made of mini marshmallows and I painted them with yellow food coloring and used molasses as the brown kernel.

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Baby Blocks for a Baby Shower!

14 Aug

This past weekend I made a beautiful pastel baby shower cake and 72 cupcakes. It was a 8 inch cake on a tiered display. When I first got this order I thought ” I think I will make baby blocks and rattles and cupcakes this should be easy.”  The client sent their inspiration picture and I was off.

THE BLOCKS

It had been a while since I made rice crispy treats, so I decided I would make my blocks out of that and have some extra snacks for myself. Somehow I managed to make them and not take pictures 😦 of the actual treats.  The one error I made was putting fruit loops in the rice crispy treats.  Years ago I was short on rice crispy cereal and added fruit loops to make up the volume. They were such a hit I automatically put fruit loops in my rice crispy treats.

If you look carefully you can see the fruit loops color showing through the white fondant. Oops! So I covered them twice with fondant to fix that problem. I watched this YouTube video to help me figure out the process.  I also realized unless you have a super sharp knife its hard to cut them perfectly, so my blocks were a little uneven. It took me two hours just to put on the stripes. Maybe I am a perfectionist but I wanted them perfect (well as close to perfect as possible) make the corners was the hardes? Afterwards, I cut out letters and cute shapes for the blocks sides.

The rattle was the easiest to make. After watching this YouTube video , I saw how easy it was. I covered a straw with fondant to make the stick and stuck the straw into the ends of the rounded fondant balls.

*Tip from the Scientist: next time I will purchase a square cutter or use square cake cut outs my blocks were a little uneven and not all the same size.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE CAKE

Yummy yellow cake with butter cream frosting.  The cake is moist and fluffy.

I drew out a scalloped design on paper, first tracing the top rim of cake pan (not bottom it will be too small). I used a ring to draw the semi-cirles along the outline. I places the paper cut out over the rolled out fondant before cutting it and placing on cake.

The hard part was getting the semi-circles to be large enough to go around the cake withough a portion of a semi circle being left at the end. The other challenge was centering it on the cake without tearing. I had to cut and roll it three times!  Once secured with a little water around the edges I was done.

Last step, adding the lettering and circles. The only problem was the purple fondant kept ripping. I don’t know why! So I had to patch it with purple butter cream and hide  some tears with the circles and the lettering on the front. Unless you were looking for it no one would have noticed. I must figure out how to get fondant on my cakes with no issues. I am becoming an expert patch artist!

* Tip from the Scientist: Whenever I cover a cake with fondant I keep a little butter cream a little darker tinted than the color of the fondant to patch holes. Buttercream dries lighter than fondant.

THE CUPCAKES

There is always a challenge when you have to do cupcakes AND a cake. I completed most of the cake and then left time to work on the cupcakes. I had the most fun with these. I made chocolate discs from white chocolate. See my blog post on how to make these discs.  People don’t love the taste of fondant, so someone recommended using chocolate. Because cupcakes are so small, fondant can be overpowering.  I piped booties and teddy bears onto the flower discs (which I didn’t take a picture of) and made sculpted chocolate rattles and pins.

It was easy to make the disks. See my post on how to make the chocolate disks. Took me about 45 to make 35 circles and 35 flowers. Why so long… you have to wait for the chocolate to harden in between.

Make extras they break easily!

I used a #5 tip to pipe the booties. Once crusted I used the end of paint brush to make hole in bootie and piped on bow and top stripe. It took about me 30 min to mix the color and Pipe the booties. I put them in the fridge to crust and finished them to next day. *I made them all ahead of time, but these can be easily piped onto the cupcakes the day of, just leave time to dry to poke holes

I used a plastic chocolate candy tray. I purchased it from Michael’s a while ago to make party favors. A great buy because I kept finding multiple ways to use these!

ALL TOGETHER

And the final setup… I made my own display because they are expensive to purchase, not alway quite what you want, and unless you are at the event to get your display back, they just throw it away.  See my post about how I made this display for under $25.00!

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Make your own Cupcake and Cake Display for under $15.00!

14 Aug

I recently decided to start making my own displays for my cakes and cupcakes. I never used one before because displays are EXPENSIVE.  Looking around the internet and party stores these can set you back $30.00 for a small display and up to $60.00 for a large one. I had 72 cupcakes and a cake to display, so I would have needed a few of them. The worst part is if you are not an attendee of the event, it just gets thrown away or you have to have someone keep it for you. Just a hassle.

So to alleviate my guilt of not having my treats nicely presented and feeling like my money was being thrown away I found a cost effective way to make my own displays!

Here is what you will need in the picture below… and a GLUE GUN, especially if you are short on time, wet glue takes long to set. I had to stack books on my display until dried. Use a glue gun 3 to 4 bucks at Walmart! The cake boards are $3.00 for a back of 4 – 10 depending on the size. If you make cakes a lot you should have many of these in many sizes. The ribbon was 50 cents each.

Scissors sharp enough to cut ribbon, wrapping paper, pins, wide ribbon, thin ribbon for edges, cake circles, Styrofoam, old pencils or pens and a glue gun..

FIRST cover the center poles with wide ribbon. I got these at dollar store, craft stores too expensive. Cant find styrofoam at dollar store use CANS or cups!!! 🙂

SECOND… Trace your cake circles and cover them with your selected wrapping paper. I got mine from… yep the dollar store. They had a sale 2 for 1, even better!

THIRD … use a pin to hold ribbon in place and hot glue ribbon around the sides or your cake circles

Fourth… use old pencils or pens to poke holes into Styrofoam and through the cake boards to make display more sturdy. (sorry no pic)

Completed displays

other websites: http://cakejournal.com/tutorials/how-to-make-a-cake-stand-for-cupcakes-or-mini-cakes/

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Happy Birthday Liyah The Explorer!

8 Jul

Happy Birthday Aaliyah! I made this cake for my friend’s little girl on her birthday this Saturday. She loves Dora the Explorer!

On Thursday I made all the lettering because the big letters had to made by hand. I used wax paper to trace out the letters then traced that onto the fondant to cut the letters using the straight shaping tools.  I punched the small letters out using the Wilton punch outs.

 

On Friday I baked all the cakes and made the frosting. I made a 9 inch for the base and 6 inch on top. Whenever you  tier  a cake  you must support  the upper level s with dowels (see tip below about  using dowels). This is my signature, super moist Red and White Velvet cake and Creamy Cream Cheese Frosting!

…And the decorating begins! A two tier cake with fondant textured ribbons on the side of bottom tier and a Dora Cake candle to top it all off! I have also included the inspiration that the client  found to produce  my newest creation. I think I like mine more, just sayin’ look at it!

Tips from the Scientist:

* Remember due to copyright law technically we can’t reproduce characters on cakes so get cake toppers from your local craft store. OR head to Toys R’ Us and get a small figure of the character and place on your cake!

* I am not a cake tiring expert, but from what I heard from my Wilton instructor you must use dowels to ensure no cake toppling (straws can work also and much cheaper) See this Video and also this video I found to help on youtube.

 

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