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Tuesday, June 28, 2011
My nephew wanted a cake for his dad's 50th birthday. They wanted a pineapple cake with a golf theme. For the cake I altered another recipe I have used before and I found a yummy pineapple filling from
Mari's Cakes. It's so good!! Thank you Mari!!
The cake is a half sheet cake with two layers and Mari's pineapple filling. The Golf Ball itself is a Vanilla Pound Cake from the Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook, topped with Billy's Vanillie buttercream frosting, and wrapped in fondant.
Pineapple Cake Recipe
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
10 tablespoons butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup apple sauce
1 teaspoon vanilla
8 oz can of crushed pineapple (drained)
Center a rack in the over and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Flour and grease a 9x13" pan.
Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt.
Working with a stand mixer, and a paddle attachment, or a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar on medium speed for 3 minutes, until the mixture is smooth, thick and pale. Add eggs one at a time, beating for about 1 minute after each addition. Mix until you have a light fluffy batter. Reduce the mixer to low and beat in apple sauce. This might curdle the batter, and that's ok. Add the pineapple and mix on low to blend completely. Add dry ingredients, mixing only until they disappear into the batter.
Pour into pan and bake for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Enjoy this fun tropical summery flavor! Sweet goodness!
Thursday, June 16, 2011
My sweet girls are June babies and we had a big fun swim party to celebrate their birthdays! I went all out for this fun party. Not without help though! My dear friend Mrs. W, made the cutest designs for both girls. She made a Dolphin design for my oldest and Mermaid design for my youngest.
My girls and I had fun crafting away with the designs!
First of all we made bottle cap necklaces for each guest, some with the mermaid design and some with the dolphin design. I placed them on a black pan and set them in a stand for each girl to select their necklace at the party.
Then I made tote bags for each guest. For the older girls I monogrammed their initial on cute polka-dotted fabric and then sewed it on the tote. For the guests of my younger daughter, I had the mermaid digitized by my friend Elsa (who does an amazing job!!) and sewed that and their names on the bags. I embellished the mermaid totes with a little ribbon.
Mrs. W designed water bottle labels and thank you cards to match the invites. My girls glued them on the bottles. We included these in the tote bags. That way each child had a drink for the ride home!
Oh, isn't this a cake blog? :) Here are my cakes! We had a Mermaid cake for my youngest. I decorated the top with chocolate rocks, yummy and very rock like!! I also made cute sea creatures out of fondant to sit in the waves. The mermaid cake was a swirl chocolate vanilla cake from the Cake Book, topped with Billy Vanillie Buttercream. Unfortunately, the cake was a bit dry, and that is the first time I've had trouble with one of her recipes. :(
Here is the back of the cake showing our cute little octopus. It was so hot here, close to 100 degrees, that the cake was beginning to melt! I only use real butter, and when it gets that warm you better eat it quick!!
My other daughters cake the Dolphin cake was a Deeply Dark Devils Food Cake also from the Cake Book with the Billy's Vanille Buttercream. This cake was deliciously moist and very chocolaty! Yumm!
The poor cake was melting in the heat, but it was so good!!
Happy Birthday my sweet darlings, I love you!!!
Tuesday, June 7, 2011
My little sister just graduated from UNM . Yep, that's right! She is a Rock Star in my book!! :) She is going to be a dental hygienist, did you guess? We (my husband, my sister Nicole, and I) flew out to see her graduate, and of course she needed a cake! She didn't want a square cake with a tooth picture on it, she wanted the real deal, 3D cake. Just for her, I made one. :)
She was wearing this cute t-shirt from school, with a tooth on it. I said "We should make that one!" Turns out my stepmother Claudia designed the shirt! Perfect! Once I figured out the design, I needed a base to make the tooth on. My awesome stepmom said she could make one. Really? Wow! She and my Dad went to the workshop and came back with a wooden base to build the cake around.
I covered the bottom half of the base with rice crispy treats (actually they were fruity rice crispy treats, yumm!). I baked four 10" round Italian Cream Cakes to make the top portion of the tooth. Once I had the bottom the way I wanted I covered that in fondant. Then, I worked on the top. I carved the top to make it look more tooth like. Once that was completed, I covered the top half in fondant and made the face. We were cracking jokes all night. I was doing root canals, and fillings. So silly!
The base was a premade cake board, but it turned out not to be strong enough to hold the cake, so we placed a pan under it.
I used fondant to do the lettering,
and covered the edge of the cake board with pretty silver dotted black ribbon.
The final details: We found a "cap" at the craft store, and they just so happened to have a giant red toothbrush in the house, go figure! Claudia made the arms and the dental tool to match the t-shirt picture (did I mention she is a very talented artist?) and attached them to the cake. You can kind of see her cute t-shirt on the right side of the cake with the tooth image on it.
|My Rock Star Sis and I.|
Congratulations Melissa!! I'm so proud of you!!
Saturday, May 14, 2011
My friend Carrie sent me a picture of the cutest cake and asked if I could make a similar one, for her daughter Courtney. What a fun cake! We love MLP at our house. :) She wanted a 10" Sweet Strawberry Cake with a Strawberry Filling and Strawberry Buttercream.
Perfect for someone turning 6!
Carrie picked up the Ponies she wanted to use on the cake and delivered them to my house. I delivered the cake to her party and assembled it on location. I was too worried about traveling with all those pieces sticking out! Unfortunately, we did have a casualty with a crack in the rainbow as I placed it in the cake. Some tape and cloud cover, all is well. Carrie was very gracious about the whole thing!! Thank you Carrie!!
I added fun edible sparkles to the stars, and a pearl dust to the clouds. Ponies love bling! :)
Complete with a water fall of course!
Happy 6th Birthday Courtney!!
Thursday, April 28, 2011
Monday, April 11, 2011
This weekend I reached a new milestone! I did a wedding!! It was such an honor to be able to contribute to the celebration. I loved that the bride and groom knew exactly what they wanted and were able to communicate that to me. They choose three flavors of cake. Lemon cake, with Lemon Curd Filling and a Lemon Buttercream topped with a fresh raspberry, White Cake, with a Raspberry filling, and a Swiss Meringue Frosting sprinkled with toasted coconut,
Devilishly Moist Chocolate Cake, with a Fudgy Frosting. Everything was all natural with no food coloring or fondant. All the recipes I used were from my very favorite cake cookbook of all time by Tish Boyle, The Cake Book.
For the top tier on the cake stand, I made a 6" White Cake, with a Raspberry Filling, and a Swiss Meringue Frosting sprinkled with toasted coconut. She wanted 125 of each flavor of mini cupcakes, I ended up with a few extra of each flavor, and the total was more than 400 mini cupcakes! We calculated three cupcakes per guest, one of each flavor. My husband helped me deliver and set up. He was a huge help!! The bride had fresh flowers that I used to decorate the top of the cake and around the mini cupcakes.
It took us a good 1 1/2 hours to set up the cupcakes just right. Amazingly the frosting was in good shape when we got there (thanks to my hubby's careful driving!!) and all we had to do was place the raspberries on the Lemon mini cupcakes. Just a few of the mini's got messed up and so some people (family of the bride and groom) had a little "taste test" as we were setting up, since we had plenty of extras this was not a problem. The bride and groom had a guard near by all day, so no one would be temped to do their own taste test.
I pray Jeff and Christi have a blessed life together and enjoy each other to the fullest!
Wednesday, April 6, 2011
I often think about what exactly goes into my family's food. The choices I make, I make because I believe they are the best choices for my families health. I'm not so strict and rigorous that my kids don't consume junk food or processed food, but I try to make those a very small percentage of what they actually eat. That is one of the many reasons I started baking from scratch.
Please understand, I'm not trying to say eating cake is actually good for you, but if we are going to eat it, shouldn't it be the best it can be?
I must tell you, I'm a label reader. I looked at the back of the cake box and there were things included in the mix that I didn't want to pay for with our money, and health. Things like High Froutose Corn Syrup (HFCS), or Hydrogenated Fats (Trans Fats), and things that sound foreign to me like: Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate. Which is some sort of salt, I can figure that much out, but there are many things listed on a basic white cake that I'm not sure of what it is and certainly doesn't sound like food to me. For example:
My basic rule of thumb is if it doesn't sound like food, it's probably not really food, or they would call it by it's name. It's most likely artificial or imitation food. Another rule of thumb that is easy understand is, when the food is closer to the way God made it, the better it is for you. The more we processes it, the less it resembles the original food to our eye and to our bodies. Another factor to consider is when certain elements that have been isolated out of the food, they may be missing certain key elements that make it viable to the body. Vitamins and minerals, all work together in a complex way to nourish our being. God made the apple with hundreds of components, not just vitamin C. Sorry, I just don't buy that science is smarter than God. We are just not that advanced. If you would like to learn more about today's food and what it means, I recommend this great book by Michael Pollan- In Defense Of Food.
When I make food from scratch, I use ingredients that I can pronounce, and know exactly what they are. Like flour, butter, eggs, milk, sugar, sea salt, baking powder, and baking soda. All familiar, traditional ingredients, and guess what? I feel happy putting these things into my food, it gives me a wholesome pleasure to watch them all come together. I enjoy cooking, and I think there is beauty in the raw ingredients, the colors, the textures are all somehow soothing to my soul. Not to mention, real food actually tastes better to me than the artificial food. Not that the artificial food doesn't taste good, but side by side I can taste the difference, and so can many other people, I know because they they have told me!
I'm not perfect, and neither is the list below. If anyone has special requests, I'm very happy to accommodate them. :) So, with no further ado, here ya go.
These are the ingredients I put into my cakes (depending on the recipe & availability of course!):
Unbleached All Purpose Organic Flour by Central Milling Company
Unbleached Cake Flour by King Arthur Flour
Organic Cane Sugar by Wholesome Sweeteners
Organic Large Grade AA Brown Eggs, Cage Free and Humane Certified by Kirkland
Organic Butter by Kirkland, or Conventional Butter with no rBST
Organic Milk by Kirkland
Conventional Powdered Sugar purchased in bulk from Costco
Conventional Food Coloring by Wilton, AmeriColor, and Adams Extract
Rumford Cornstarch from Non-Genetically Modified Corn
Rumford Aluminum-free Baking Powder, or 365 Aluminum-free Baking Powder
Pure Sea Salt from Brazil's Northern Coast by Kirkland
Arm & Hammer Pure Baking Soda
Hershey's Cocoa Natural Unsweetened
Baker's Unsweetened Chocolate Squares
Nestle Chocolate Morsels
Conventional Marshmallows (for fondant)
Conventional Non-Hydrogenated Palm Oil by Hill Country Fair (used only for greasing pans and fondant)
Organic & Conventional Lemons
Organic & Conventional Strawberries
Organic & Conventional Raspberries
Conventional Sweetened Coconut or Organic Dried Coconut
Conventional Unsweetened Canned Pineapple
Conventional Cream Cheese that is rBST free
100% pure Guar Gum by Now (for Gluten Free Baking)
White Rice Flour from Whole Foods Bulk Bin (for Gluten Free Baking)
Thursday, March 10, 2011
Happy Birthday to Roger! My friend Leisa contacted me, she was planning a surprise birthday party for her husband and wanted a special cake to celebrate. This was a party to celebrate Life! The other thing she wanted was chocolate. Lots of chocolatey goodness! So, I got to work on it. I have been wanting to do a cake with stars shooting out of it and this was the perfect opportunity! I made layers of Tish Boyle's Devilishly Moist Chocolate Cake from The Cake Book, and filled them with a Chocolate Pudding filling from her Brooklyn Blackout Cake recipe, and topped them with Fudgy Chocolate Frosting. Then I decorated it all with my homemade fondant.