Thursday, April 30, 2015

A new outlet for creativity: Cake Pops

So I had so much cake left from the birthday cake I made Jayme that I have tried making different cake pops as a way to use some of it. 
I made these ice cream cone ones for the kids to give away for May Day. Apparently not all states make such a big deal about May but here in the Midwest it is a day for kids to run around and leave treats on the front porches of their friends and hopefully not get caught. 
Jayme shares a birthday with her brother-in-law so I made some more and his mom took them to him at school.
She gets the credit for arranging them in the burlap. 
Then today I decided to use a Trader Joe's Lemon Zinger cake that I had and cut small circles out and layer them in tiny layer cakes to make these. I didn't mix the cake with icing because it is a dense, moist cake and with a little pink candy inbetween they stayed together. 
So that is my fun with cake pops so far. I am sure they will make an appearance some other time.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Minnie Mouse Cake Pops

I had cupcakes left from making the chocolate cake last week so yesterday I decided to see if I could make Minnie Mouse Cake Pops. I loved doing it and I think they turned out perfect!
You can sort of see in this picture above that I drew the circles for the ears and the bows then turned the parchment over so I would not get lead in the candy coating. I piped on the black circles. Then when they were hardened I piped on the bows and as I finished each bow I sprinkled white nonpareils on them. It is very important to make sure the ears are dry before using the nonpareils because you don't want them to stick to the ears. After the ears and bows were hard I dipped one cake ball and placed the ears into the coating then placed the bow. It worked perfectly. Easy and very fun.
I had just bought a new printer and it had the styrofoam in the box so that got used to put them in while they dried. Any port in a storm! 

Monday, April 20, 2015

Wine bottle birthday cake

Bobbi and Ashley are having a party for Jayme's birthday. A wine tasting party at Bobbi's. So I got inspired to make the cake. Today (Monday) I created a gum paste and royal icing label to put on the iced cake. I had to find a bottle that is the size of the finished cake so that it would have a rounded shape as it dries.
I made the cakes to put in the freezer so that all I have to do on Saturday is ice the cake and finish with making it look like a wine bottle. The cakes I made in my sandwich loaf pans. Perfect. 
I will just have to carve them into shape.
Then I rolled out a bit of gum paste and when I had it the thickness I wanted I put a piece of vintage plastic shelf liner (never been used. It was new old stock that I found at an antique store. A whole roll.)
on top of it and rolled again to impress the lace image onto the gum paste. I used a large present with a bow cookie cutter to make the shape.
Put that on parchment on the bottle that I found to fit the finished size of the cake. Then I took some gold Luster Dust and lemon extract and painted it gold.
That really helped the lace stand out. Then I took white royal icing and 4 different piping tips and piped on the name with a caligraphy tip, the vines and other writing with a #1, the leaves with a tiny leaf tip, and the grapes with a #3.
 I actually like the monochromatic look a lot but the painter in me wanted to add color so...out came the purple, green, brown and pink Luster Dust.
Extremely happy with how it looks. Can't wait to finish the cake and see it all done.
Well I have finished the cake and it has been eaten.
But before I get to that, I must say that I indulged a dream that I have been fostering for awhile and taught myslef how to make gum paste flowers. 
I really wasn't planning on using them on the birthday cake I just wanted to try making them. But after I got done I had to create a way to use them on with the cake.
So I baked a small chocolate cake and made it look like a basket. That was really fun to do also. So it was time to carve the bottle out of my long layers.
I started cutting and then when I thought I had it I cut some more to get a rounder shape. I wish I would have made the neck longer but I didn't so there you have it...
I added a cork at the top and rounded the bottle. I used buttercream icing and smoothed it with a Viva paper towel. Then I took a deep breath and put the label on and put the little basket cake next to the neck.
The label fit and I didn't break it so I could breathe normally. I filled the basket with green using a leaf tip. Then I placed my flowers that I made.
As I worked I kept adding more icing leaves around the top and side of the bottle. 

I thought I was done here...but no...I wanted a flower between the "gouda cheese" (which is really a chocolate cake covered in fondant. my first try with fondant. really fun.) And the wine bottle. So I decided to try a poppy. It turned out even better than I imagined.
But still not quite complete so, a leaf.
Ok, at some point I have to tell myself to clean up the mess and stop adding things!! haha but I was very pleased with the end result.
I also made wine glass cookies and wine label cookies.

Everything all together and Jayme with her cake and cookies.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Minnie Mouse

Poppy loves Minnie Mouse. So in June Jayme is giving her a Minnie Mouse birthday party. I will make cookies but the characters are so iconic that I didn't want to mess up the look. I started my internet search and found JB Cookie Cutters. Amazing.

I just had to try them out.
So the first time I tried outlining everything.
Then the bow.
The black ears and the mouth
The flesh color.
Pretty happy with it but I did try some other ways.
This was without the initial outlining. 
I will admit I made three more...just kept thinking I could do better. 
So I my third try I didn't outline the bow at all and just counted on the texture.
Ok, after all, they are just going to be eaten but I will get them exactly as I want them. 

Friday, April 17, 2015

Baby Onsies

Pilar and Prince Amukamara are expecting their first baby. A girl. They came over for dinner when they were in town last week. It was great to see them. She looks amazing! 
I made them some sugar cookies and decorated them like Onsies. 
It was such a fun project and I was going to do half floral and half pink with a jersey look.... 
...but I went a little crazy!

Anyway you get the idea. 

Polar loved them and that makes me happy! 
Can't wait to see that sweet little one!

Happy Baking,