Archive for ‘Cakes’

July 10, 2014

Dessert Pizza

This is my first time baking a dessert pizza. I should have titled this entry “Birthday Cake For My Picky Eater”.  My daughter doesn’t like any sort of cake or cupcakes so I struggle each year with finding something that will please both her and her birthday party guests. Some years I’ve prepared two cakes in the hopes of pleasing everyone! Once in a while she’ll have a few bites of ice cream cake or a store bought cake… but for the most part it gets wasted.

This year I changed it up and decided to bake a Dessert Pizza. Each child can have a slice and if they’re not in the mood to eat it at the party, I can send it home with them in a cute bag for later consumption. Win-Win. Lizzy chose her toppings for this pizza, so that may explain why I have this random assortment of goodies.

Side note: her birthday party was held at Claire’s accessories store in the mall and this dessert pizza was so easy to transport on a silver tray, it didn’t need to be refrigerated, and it was easy super to cut into slices.

Dessert pizza birthday cake

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup softened butter
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 package semi sweet chocolate chips ( set aside a few tablespoons for last step)

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees (f)
  2. Line a round cookie sheet with parchment paper
  3. Cream together the butter and both sugars.
  4. Beat in the eggs and vanilla.
  5. Add the flour, baking soda and salt, blend.
  6. Add the chocolate chips, stirring in with a wooden spoon
  7. Press the cookie dough onto the prepared pan. Leave at least 1 inch of space between the dough and the edge of the pan. (The dough will spread out as it bakes). NOTE: you might not need to use all of the dough, depending on the size of your cookie sheet/ pizza pan. I had approx 1/2 cup dough left over.
  8. Place the whole pan in the refrigerator for 30 minutes, if you have time for this step.
  9. Bake for 20-22 minutes. This is meant to be a soft cookie so be patient and let it cool and firm up.
  10. Allow the cookie to cool on the pan on a wire rack.
  11. Carefully transfer the cookie onto a fancy tray or serving dish.
  12. When ready to decorate, melt a few tablespoons of chocolate chips in the microwave and use it as the “glue” to attach the candy pieces.
Cookie dough ready to go in the oven

Cookie dough ready to go in the oven

Decorate dessert pizza

Dessert pizza birthday at Claire's

Happy 9th Birthday to my beautiful girl!

p.s. The kids really enjoyed the pizza, they were fighting over the the last 3 pieces and any candy on the tray that happened to fall off the slices when I was cutting it up.

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I really felt like I had to make this pizza kid friendly, but if I had my way I would have made a dessert pizza that looks like one of these beauties found on Pinterest.com

Pinterest dessert pizzas

Enjoy!

Crystal

June 5, 2013

Fishing Birthday Cake

Recently, my boss Tibor asked me to bake a cake for his son’s 30th birthday party. His hobby is fishing, so we thought that the cake should be a fishing theme as well. This entire cake is edible, even the salmon and the fish hooks 😉

Salmon cake

The cake base was vanilla with a custard filling and covered in a thin layer of buttercream icing.
I covered it in a layer of fondant that was just a bit thicker than what I would usually apply, since it was to be embossed to look like a slab of wood.
I started by measuring the lines evenly and then using my set of gum paste tools and a ruler to make the deep lines, and holes that look like nails. Also, I scraped the lines onto the fondant so it would look similar to wood grain. I watered down some brown food colouring and painted it onto the cake. In the crevices, I applied a less watered down brown so it appeared darker.

The week prior to preparing the cake, I worked on making the fishy embellishments (lures, bobbers, hooks). I allowed them to air dry until hardened and then painted them with food colouring, edible markers and silver shimmer dust.

As for the fish, this took about an hour or two to shape and paint. It’s completely made out of fondant instead of gum paste or modeling clay, because I find that easiest. I kept it stored in an airtight container so it would stay soft.

The night that I was supposed to be making this, my husband broke his ankle and was rushed to emergency. Around 11pm I left him there to rest and came home to finish the cake just before 3am. Yes I was exhausted the next morning from lack of sleep and stress over my hubby’s well-being. But I didn’t want to flake out and cancel the order last minute, so I stayed up late, cranked the music and got in a zone. I wasn’t able to attend the birthday party the next day but from what I hear, the cake was enjoyed amongst the guests and the birthday boy himself. 🙂
As for my husband, I’m happy to say he’s healing quickly!

 

Crystal

August 20, 2011

Persimmon Wedding Cake

According to wikipedia, Persimmon can be described as a medium orange-red, but according to bridal store dresses, ribbons, and silk flowers, that colour ranges greatly. I was excited when this bride told me her colours were persimmon and brown because I love the `Fall feel`of those colour tones together, they`re so warm and inviting. Since it`s still August and quite warm, we opted for silk florals this time because the reception is non-air conditioned and that could be a huge disaster for real flowers if they`re not properly taken care of.  If she had opted for real flowers, we could have used these flower spikes, where you fill them with water, insert them into the cake and then add your flowers. But I wanted to create a full look with the flowers, and we would have needed a lot of spikes, therefore making a mess on the top of the cake.

My fav part of course, was the orange crystal jewels, they look so pretty when the light hits them.

August 12, 2011

August Weddings

The past couple weeks have been so warm…in fact too warm to bake goodies! Our little old air conditioner near the kitchen/living room is on strike.  So this week I just wanted to share a photo of a recent wedding cake. I’ll post a new blog with yummy treats next week. Any ideas or inspiration would be great!

I heart this simple cake.  With a quilting/diamond pattern on the top and a plain-jane layer on the bottom, the bold coloured ribbon and single white flower speak for themselves. This ribbon that the bride and groom provided was wider than the average ribbon, so I stacked the cake layers a little higher than usual. The top 8″ has 3 layers and the bottom cake (14″) has 2 thick layers of both chocolate and vanilla cake.  Cute topper hey?

Aimee Makris, a VERY talented frotographer from Moi Photography took these photo’s below and I was super excited to share them!

I LOVE LOVE LOVE this photo!

Check out Aimee’s amazing website, at Moi Photography or follow her on Facebook!

July 13, 2011

Princess Birthday Party

For our daughter’s 6th birthday, we held her party at a local gymnastics center. 1 hour of instructed gymnastics on all of the fun equipment, and 1 hour of cake, treats, and present opening.  Despite the hot day and lack of air conditioning, the kids seemed to have a great time!

As our daughter gets older, I’m afraid we might not have very many years left of girly girl themed parties, so this year I was excited when she decided on a princess theme. Since it was a unisex party, I used both blue and pink for her party colours.

I baked the mini Princess cake using this Wilton Mini Wonder Mold. When the cake cooled, I inserted this Princess Cake Topper and whipped up a batch of blue buttercream frosting. After piping the dress bottom on, I sprinkled blue disco dust all over the dress!

If you’re wondering why I made both a cake and cupcakes…I was a little sketchy about transporting the castle cake to the party because there’s so many speed bumps in the parking lot and I didn’t want the pillars to fall over. So I made 4 dozen cupcakes (half choc/half vanilla) with vanilla buttercream frosting for the kids party, and the castle cake was for our after-party with family at our house. My favourite part was the edible sparkles (disco dust). You can use a small paintbrush to dust the sparkles on top of the cupcakes after you’ve frosted them.

I hand-made 4 dozen cupcake skirts shaped like crowns in 4 different shades of 8 x 12″ scrapbook paper. Here’s a template for the skirts if you would like to try making them too.

I had a little “oops” with the castle cake…when I was mixing the fondant, I accidentally scooped purple food colouring instead of blue into the fondant and once I started kneading it, it was too late to salvage and add blue…therefore I had to use purple flowers for this cake. My daughter still loved it though!

We bought some pink elephant popcorn and then made our own buttered popcorn and filled these cute individual cardboard containers. I found some sparkly crowns and castle stickers at a local craft store and applied those to add a little more glitter. I stored them in a wooden serving tray and accessorized with some pink feather boa’s.

One thing I learned from this years party was that, once again I over thought everything and the party went by so fast I didn’t get much of a chance to enjoy it! Despite that, my husband took some really good photo’s of the kids and my daughter said she had the best birthday ever!

p.s. Here’s the invitations I designed, printed, cut-out and glittered. SO fun!

Happy Summer!

Crystal

June 25, 2011

Mom’s 50!

Here’s a silly cake I made for my mom last week for her 50th birthday. I love the character Maxine from those super sarcastic Shoebox greeting cards. Have a look at a few of her remarks I’ve borrowed for this cake…it made my Mom laugh, that’s what matters. 🙂

So I went with the safety of peanut butter and chocolate for this one, assuming most people would like that flavour. The cake was 2 layers of chocolate, with peanut butter filling and smooth vanilla buttercream frosting. Oh, and I can’t forget the 16 peanut butter cups and the dollops of peanut butter frosting on top. I didn’t try a slice of this cake – I opted for a hostess style cupcake instead, but it did look tasty.

For the Maxine photo’s, I didn’t have a printer to make edible images…so I rolled out some fondant, cut out squares and then used food colouring gel, water and a fine paint brush to draw these pictures. (I’m not an artist, so that will explain why they’re messy, but I think everyone got the idea.)

Happy Birthday Mom!

Love Crystal

 

June 9, 2011

Thank You Cake

People often feel gratitude toward the nurses, doctors and other staff who take such good care of them when they’re hospitalized. It’s hard to express that gratitude in words sometimes. This cake was ordered by a sweet couple who very generously express their gratitude towards the hospital staff at ARHCC by bringing in treats regularly, and this time a Daffodil Cake. This cake was inspired by the Canadian Cancer Society’s logo – a yellow daffodil that represents a symbol of HOPE. 

Crystal

April 27, 2011

Going Tropical

One of my girlfriends recently became married in Mexico and her wedding colours included the most gorgeous tones of fuchsia pink and neon orange. Let me tell you, I was drooling over how great her wedding photo’s turned out. Sadly I wasn’t able to make it out to attend this special wedding because I had visited a few months prior, but I was inspired to make a cake using their wedding colour scheme.

Here’s a mini collage of her tropical wedding, and the tasty looking cupcakes that inspired me to bake with pink & orange.

And this little darling is their daughter, wearing the cutest pink dress I’ve ever seen. How cute or those cheeks!

And this is the cake made this past week…

One more pic of the gorgeous couple having a stroll on the beach…so lucky that they get to live in paradise! 

Congratulations Kaila & Sergio on your beautiful wedding! Love you tons!

p.s. if you’re wondering who the talented photographer was…here’s his website. Don Young Photography.com and here’s the wedding slideshow he prepared for the happy couple.

Crystal

April 23, 2011

Fun with Black and White

I wanted to share this photo of a recent wedding cake I made. Black and White is so timeless and classy. I wanted to practice my piping skills and draw either a crown/tiara or a chandelier for the middle tier. You need to understand though, practicing piping on a surface and piping it on a cake are SO different and it’s nerve-wracking using black icing because if I mess up, it can be difficult to fix.

I’m surprised how many people are opting for black and white cakes, black bridesmaid dresses, and black and white decor right now. You would think that with Spring here, we would be seeing more pastel colours… Oh but wait, it’s still randomly snowing in my town, so maybe we have a few more weeks until Spring fever hits!  

My favourite part, the faux diamond buttons. 🙂   It’s a simple cake, but I smile when I see it!

Oh by the way, Happy Easter!

Crystal

February 8, 2011

Chocolate Box Cake

Ingredients:

  • 1  9×13″  cake or 1 8×8″ cake (any flavour of your choice)
  • 1 batch of Buttercream icing
  • 1 bag Heart shaped York Peppermint Patties
  • mini cupcake cups/treat cups
  • pink food colouring
  • basketweave tip & piping bag

Directions:

  1. Bake a 9×13″ cake. Let it cool on wire rack, then transfer it to the refrigerator or freezer.
  2. Cut out a heart shaped design on a piece of paper and use it as a template to cut the heart out of the cake.
  3. You can use the remaining pieces of cake to cut out tiny cakes and make Petit Fours… or you can eat them and buy York Peppermint patties to use in the chocolate box and decorate them with buttercream icing.  I chose option #2.
  4. Gently carve out the middle of the cake, leaving a thick base and 1 1/2″ border around the outside.
  5. Apply a thin coat of buttercream icing and place the cake back in the refrigerator to firm up.
  6. Whip up some coloured icing and fill a piping bag with the buttercream and a basketweave tip.
  7. Decorate the cake, and put it back in the refrigerator for a few minutes. (see below for a picture of basketweave design)
  8. Place the mini cupcake liners inside the cake and fill them with the peppermint patties, stacked 2 high.
  9. Fill a piping bag with white buttercream and a #3 tip and add designs to the chocolates.

 Basketweave DesignI know that my basketweaving piping was HORRIBLE! I really need to practice that more.

Happy Valentine’s Day!!

Enjoy!

Crystal

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