Sunday, February 5, 2012


Ok, with all of our chaos around this house, the one thing that serves as my stress relief...CUPCAKES!
Here's what I've come up with...

The first I tried were Rolo Cupcakes, super yummy with a rolo inside and salted caramel buttercream. These are amazing and big sellers!Then I moved on to Rum Chata Cupcakes. Wow, that's all I can say. If you haven't tried Rum Chata, it's fantastic (google it). But as a Frosting, it's incredible!

To accompany the Rum Chata cakes I decided to make a Banana Split cupcake. This had a banana pineapple cake topped with a salted butterscotch frosting and a fresh strawberry. These were a big hit, especially with my 4 year old Wyatt.

Next I tried a Strawberry Shortcake cupcake. This was to die for. I filled it (my first time with filling) with a stewed strawberry whipped cream and topped it with a strawberry cream cheese/buttercream frosting. I used a vanilla almond cake and they went over with a bang! Loved it. Sorry, no picture for this one.

I moved on to one I had in my head for a quite awhile without disappointment. It's a Raspberry Lemon cupcake. OOOOOOhhhhh it was good. I started with a vanilla almond poppyseed cake, filled it with a lemon cream, and topped it with a raspberry cream cheese/buttercream frosting. It is amazing!

Finally, in an ode to my husband and the fire department and their unnatural obsession with Guinness and Whisky, I made an Irish Car Bomb cupcake. This was a Guinness chocolate cake, filled with a whiskey ganache and topped with a Bailey's Irish Cream, cream cheese, frosting. It's pretty rich but wonderful!
So here's the skinny. They are all for sale, $20 per dozen or $10 per 1/2 dozen. None are for sale as a single cupcake at this time. If interested you can send me an email: I would be happy to whip them up, I'm in the Grand Island area and do not ship. I can't even fathom what that would entail at this time. Also I'm in development of an Oatmeal Scotchie cupcake with a Rum Chata/Butterscotch Schnapps frosting and a mini oatmeal cookie on top. I have an order due Wed so will have it developed by then! I will try anything so if you have an idea that I don't have, shoot it my way! I don't do ordinary flavors, that's what the super market is for, but I love extraordinary ideas! Enjoy

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Snow White Birthday Cake for a Princess!

Well, it's no secret that when it comes to events, I have the inability to plan ahead. This is especially true every year at Bella's birthday. It comes right before Thanksgiving and the world is far too hectic for me to multitask properly. As a result, Bella sometimes gets the short end of the stick. This year was no exception in regards to planning. I was out in California at a conference when my Uncle e-mailed me to see when I was having Bella's birthday...EEKS! I forgot and it snuck up too soon! Nonetheless I was determined that when it came to her party and cake, she was not getting the shaft this year. I set out to find the perfect cake to make! She is obsessed with Snow White so I hit Pinterest and Google and got a crazy good idea! First I found THIS, then I needed to get a better picture of the dwarfs so I found THIS. I decided I would adapt to my abilities and came up with this:

I was so excited! I started with the headboard and footboard, made them out of gum paste. I made the gum paste, rolled it out, then cut out the shapes needed and took a sharp knife to draw the lines and make it look like pieces of wood. Every imperfection only heightened the affect! There was a even a little hole that looked like a knot in the wood, it was perfect. I let it dry (still white) for about three days, two would have been sufficient but I made it earlier. Then, I mixed brown food coloring gel and water, painted it on with a paint brush and Voila!

I used a box cake mix (red velvet) and canned frosting, not typically my style but just didn't have the additional time for all homemade this year. When I made the cake, it wasn't thick enough to support the huge head/foot boards so I decided to juice it up a bit. I placed rice crispy treats (frosted at the sides) underneath the cake, then I painted them with the same food coloring/water mixture as the headboard so it looked like wooden sideboards if you got a glance.

Everything else was molded out of fondant, this is incredibly time consuming but fun! I worked on it two different nights and one morning, probably took about 4 hours or so just for the molding, you really want to do this at least a day ahead so they can dry. Also, make sure you have toothpicks on hand, they were especially helpful for keeping the Dwarfs heads on and the stems for the apples! Finally, I covered the bed in fondant so the brand new Snow White Barbie wasn't sitting in Frosting, then I placed Snow white in the bed and covered with a large clean piece of Fondant with the top folded over for a blanket affect. I pressed and molded the quilt squares from leftover pieces of fondant and placed them on the blanket last with a paint brush and a little bit of water. Lastly, I took a black decorating gel for the stitching and the witch's wart. Placed each dwarf wherever they would fit and the cake was complete!

Notice the details:
Sneezy is holding a tissue
Doc has glasses (although they look like shades)
Bashful has red cheeks and nose (red food coloring and water, painted with a paint brush)
Happy also has red cheeks and nose but hands are on his belly and I gave him a big smile!
Grumpy has angry eyebrows :)
Sleepy has semi-closed eyelids (although somehow this made him look like he was of Asian descent)
and Dopey doesn't have facial hair and is probably the most identifiable!

The barrel of apples were so cute and super easy to make, definitely good for affect!
Now...if I could just get my catering business started! Although the fondant itself cost somewhere around $50, now I know why cake makers charge so much. Probably 8 hours of time and $60 in supplies! That would be over $200...guess I'm gonna have to look into making my own fondant!
One final note: when choosing candles for your 3 year old's Birthday...make sure they're not trick candles! While it's sort of funny because it's an accident, people think you're cruel! :) Sorry Bella!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

No ordinary sandwich night!

Ok, so today was a rainy dreary day. By the time supper was here we were determined to just have a "sandwich" night. However, tonight, was no ordinary sandwich night!

All of my new creations this weekend have sort of been a bust with my kiddos. I was bound and determined to give them something they'd love. What are Wyatt's favorite foods? Peanut butter and jelly and "sushi" although he'll try half a piece of sushi and then he's good to go. So for tonight, he's having peanut butter and jelly sushi! That's right, not even joking. He ate it up and loved using his chopsticks. Finally, Success! Well almost, Bella wasn't as thrilled but that's sort of her M.O. lately so it was expected. Here's how we did it, obviously very simple but I learned a few lessons along the way.

2 pieces of bread
Peanut butter (I use creamy because it's their favorite)
Jam (our family is die hard Smuckers Strawberry users)

Take the bread and cut off the crusts. With a rolling pin, thin out the bread slices so they're nice and thin, this will make rolling them up much easier. Then, apply a thin layer of peanut butter and an even thinner layer of jam. I say this because as I rolled, the jam sort of all oozed out the end and I ended up scraping a bunch off. Once both layers are spread evenly, just roll the piece up and cut into pieces. I let it stand for a couple of minutes to kind of set, then put the roll seam down on my cutting board, this helped keep it rolled up while cutting.
Here's the final product, I felt fancy so added a couple drops of honey to the plate for effect.
What do you think?

Next, Fred and I decided we needed something equally as appetizing for the over 4 years old crowd. We had some left over smoked pork roast from dinner on Friday and some great Italian Bread from the grocery store. We added some Havarti cheese slices and whipped up some coleslaw, fried an egg and wha la! The ultimate grilled cheese sandwich. Although Fred is convinced this no longer qualifies as a grilled cheese given the number of ingredients but I disagree, it's just a little more gourmet now! Either way it was very tasty! The bread got a little darker than desired but didn't affect the flavor at all, still fantastic!

Welcome Fall-Pumpkin Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Buttercream

Ok so I found yet another recipe on Pinterest. Pumpkin Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Buttercream. The answer is yes, these are as delicious as they sounds. I'm no expert at frosting so mine were not nearly as pretty as pic I found online here. However, no one cared what they looked like, they were yummy! I've attached the recipe here with my notes.

Copied from their website:

Pumpkin Cupcakes

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice (I'don't keep allspice around normally so I just added a bit more cinnamon and nutmeg)
  • 1 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten (I didn't beat before putting into the mixture, still worked fine)
  • 1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin puree

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.Line cupcake pans with paper liners; set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice; set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the brown sugar, granulated sugar, butter, and eggs. Beat on medium speed until well combined. Add dry ingredients, and mix on low until smooth. Fold in pumpkin puree.

Divide batter evenly among liners, filling each about halfway. Bake until tops spring back when touched, and a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes, rotating pans once if needed. Transfer to a wire rack; let cool completely. (Mine were done precisely at 20 minutes by my oven tends to run warm)

Makes ~ 18 cupcakes.

Source: Adapted from

Salted Caramel Buttercream

  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 stick salted butter
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 cups powdered sugar

In a saucepan, stir together granulated sugar and water. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Cook without stirring until mixture turns a deep amber color. Remove from heat and slowly add in cream and vanilla, stirring until very smooth. Let caramel cool for about 20 minutes, until it is just barely warm and still pourable. (This step is more difficult than it sounds, by the time the sugar was that dark, adding cream made it harden almost immediately, you have to add the cream VERY slowly whisking quickly, I recruited my hubby to help hold the pan so I could accomplish this, after the second try it worked fairly well, still had a few hard pieces of caramel I had to pull out. Also, I didn't let it cool the full 20 min, after 15 it was plenty cool and stiffening up)

In a mixer fitted with paddle attachment, beat butter and salt together until lightened and fluffy. Reduce speed to low and add powdered sugar. Mix until thoroughly combined.
Scrape down the side of the bowl and add the caramel. Beat on medium high speed until light and airy, and completely mixed (about 2 minutes). Mixture should be ready to use without refrigeration. If your caramel was too hot when added, it will cause your icing to be runny. If this happens refrigerate for 15-20 minutes.
Source: Slightly adapted from and

NOTE: The seasalt I used was coarse, it tastes great, however keep in mind that when you frost these, you want to use a frosting tip large enough for the sea salt to pass through (lesson learned). Next time I may have to grind the sea salt just a touch as occasionally you get an awfully crunchy bite, but the flavor is awesome.