Where the Only Limit is Your Imagination

Baking is my new passion! The magical smell of cake in the oven, the sweet aroma of cookies, the clicking sound of the mixer combining ingredients....

... sugar all over the counter, flour sprinkled on the floor and my clothes, food coloring all over my hands and the table.... I'm a messy baker. lol. I cant help myself, but I love every minute of it!

Starting off as a cake decorator, I began my new found occupation in culinary cheating a bit, and used mixes quite often.If its not broken, why fix it, right? I was a decorator, not a baker. I quickly realized my joy was not only in decorating but also in creating the whole package, the design of the cake along with the flavor. It is incredibly satisfying to see people's faces light up when they not only see their cake but also when they taste it. I find great joy in it! (Making a buck or two isn't bad either. ) :)

Join me in my journey as I learn and experiment with not only cake and decorating but also other pastries. I will share with you my ups and downs, my accomplishments and my disasters! There will be disasters...

Friday, May 20, 2011

The Tortoise and the.......Well, Just a Tortoise.

I had a cake order this week for a tortoise cake. The client is also buying his son a real tortoise. I think the cake is as big as the real thing! The body is all cake and the head and legs are RKT. Everything is frosted in butter cream and covered in fondant and hand painted with brown and green food coloring. This was a fun cake to do!!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Happy 2nd Birthday!

I don't have a lot to say about this cake, except that I made it for a very special little girl who will ALWAYS hold a place in my heart! 

I made it with chocolate cake and butter cream icing, and covered it in fondant. It was my very first "box" cake and I found that covering a square in fondant is SO MUCH harder than covering a round cake. I made the sides separate and  then pressed them to the sides of the cake. Next time I will let them dry longer so they will have a bit more strength , especially before trying to drive it 2 1/2 hours away! The sides did buckle a little because they weren't dry enough. Like I said this was my first experience in doing this, so lesson learned. I seem to be having a lot of "firsts" lately with cake decorating....and I always seem to learn a lesson from it when I'm done. lol. The bear's head was cake also, and the whole thing stood approximately 12 inches high and a 12 inches wide.  Hope you like it!


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Happy Spring!

I don't know about the rest of you, but Ive had it with the cold weather and Spring flying by( because we don't really have a Spring) and all of a sudden its summer! Give me the SUN and warmer weather. Notice I didnt say "hot" weather? I love the spring but, living in New England, its almost non-existent. (sad face) 

So, when I found out my friend's birthday was coming up this week, I really wanted to make her a cake that screamed SPRING! Her favorite flavor is lemon. The more lemon, the better. I wanted to make it all from scratch, because that's what I do, but I found this weekend to be extremely busy. I had a bunch of cakes to do and I just didn't have the time to do that. So, yes, I'll admit it....I cheated. I ALMOST feel guilty about it. I would feel worse except another friend of mine just happened to send me a bunch of recipes the day before, and this recipe was one of them. Call it coincidence??? Maybe....

This lemon cake was so easy to make and really good!! I was afraid it wouldn't have a strong lemon flavor but it really did. I was happy, and so was she.

This is the recipe I used. It makes a 2 layer 8 in cake. Enjoy!

Double Lemon Cake with Fluffy Frosting

Prepare 1 package (18.25 oz) white cake mix according to the package directions, adding 1 package (3 oz) lemon-flavored Jell-O.

For frosting, stir 1 package (3 oz) lemon flavored Jell-O into 3 tbsp boiling water until dissolved. Cool 5 min. On medium speed, beat 1 c butter (room temperature) and 1 jar (7 1/2 oz) Marshmallow Fluff until combined. Gradually beat in Jell-O, 1 c confectioners sugar and, if desired, yellow liquid food coloring, until fluffy. 

*Frost cake layers. If desired, garnish with lemon slices.*

I didn't garnish with lemon slices, obviously. I decided it wouldn't be "me" without some kind of fondant topper. So, as I said previously, I need a splash of spring, and when I think spring, I think flowers. So I quickly rolled out white fondant, cut out 7 large leaves, rolled the edges of them with a fondant tool to thin them out and to make them look more realistic, and let them dry for a short time over flower formers. (They really needed to dry longer, but I did this last minute) I should have taken a picture of this step, but, I dropped the ball on this part. Sorry.

I then dusted them with pink, purple and yellow shimmer dust, and laid them on the cake. They kept their form for the most part but I also knew I could stick the end of the leaves into the frosting and that would hold them up. Then I rolled a ball of  light pink fondant and flattened it a little with my hand on the counter, wet the bottom of it with a little water, set it in the middle of the flower and dusted it with pink shimmer dust.

*Water on wet fondant works as a glue to hold fondant pieces together*

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Homemade Gold Cake with Homemade Whipped Cream Frosting

I just wanted to share this with you.I made this for my daughter's birthday. It was so delicious and light.

Add strawberries! Yum!!!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Hiphopopotamus vs. Rhymenoceros

In case you have never heard of them, I am a HUGE fan of The Flight of the Conchords. I just had to name this post after my very favorite song from them. This post has absolutely nothing in common with the song, except for the mere fact that there is a hippo on the cake that I am posting pictures of. I made it for a friend's birthday. She loves hippos!

 I do wish I had done something different with his eyes.

Hippo Butt!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

It's Spring, but We Still Love Penguins! (Spiral Cake)

I have been very busy with cake orders the past few weeks, which is one reason it has been a couple of weeks since my last blog post. The other reason is that I started a new job in a field that I NEVER imagined I would be in! I am now a medical assistant at a Chiropractor's office! Who ME?? Ya, I never dreamed I would have a job like this. Ive always had jobs in a "creative" field. However, since I have been unemployed for a while now, I thought I would try my hand at something new....and, the job was offered to me. :) I am finding it challenging but I really like it a lot. They are training me on the job. When I'm not working, I'm making cakes for people. 

A friend of mine asked me to make her son a penguin cake for his birthday. Ive made a few in the past but I wanted to do this one a little different than the others. I don't like to so the same cake twice, if at all possible.

I started with three 8 inch cakes and two 6 inch cakes..

Then the fun began!

I decided to carve the cake BEFORE I put frosting in between the layers, in case I messed up with the carving, I didn't want the layers stuck together. I used toothpicks as a guide for my knife. I had to adjust them a few times until I was able to get the right line ALL the way around the cake at a downward slope. Top to bottom. 

Then starting at the top of the cake, I carved a notch out of it and followed my toothpick line. 

My goal was to create a spiral all the way down the cake.I kept carving, a little at a time. I took my time to make sure I had the angles right. (Most people find it better to freeze the cake before carving, and then carve it frozen. I didn't have the time to freeze mine.)

Eventually, I had a spiral around my cake from top to bottom. 

Then I frosted it with homemade whipped cream frosting! (Yum!!) And I handmade a bunch of penguins out of a fondant and gumpaste mixture to go on the cake....Here is the finished product!!

Hope you like it!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

85 Cookies and counting....

I baked and baked and baked today. 

My previous post was explaining how Amanda, from "I Am Baker", was looking for bakers to help her with a project. She asked if she could pair us up with a family that had been originally nominated for her to send cookies to. She ended up with almost 200 nominations and couldn't pick just one family to win the cookies. She needed help and I was more than happy to lend a hand! 

I picked the cookie I wanted to bake and the recipe said it made 112 cookies! Maybe mine were bigger than they were supposed to be. Ha ha...I ended up with 85. Thats still A LOT of cookies! 

I decided since I had SO MANY cookies that I would give some to other friends too. I packaged them up in clear goody bags.....

Then wrapped each sleeve in bubble wrap.....

Tomorrow I will box them up, with MORE bubble wrap, and send them on their way. 

I am so glad I was able to help with this project. There are so many people out there that just need a little pick me up and to know that there are other people that appreciate them and care. Sometimes, something as small as a few unexpected homemade cookies can bring a smile to someone's face. It brought one to mine just being a part of it. :)

Here is the recipe that I used. These cookies are soooooo good!!
(You may want to cut the recipe in half if you dont need 85 or more cookies!)

2 cups butter
24 oz. chocolate chips
4 cups flour
2 cups brown sugar
2 tsp. soda
1 tsp. salt
2 cups sugar
1 8 oz. Hershey Bar (grated)
5 cups blended oatmeal
4 eggs
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. vanilla
3 cups chopped nuts (your choice)

Measure oatmeal, and blend in a blender to a fine powder. Cream the
butter and both sugars. Add eggs and vanilla, mix together with flour,
oatmeal, salt, baking powder, and soda. Add chocolate chips, Hershey
Bar, and nuts. Roll into balls, and place two inches apart on a cookie

Bake for 10 minutes (I baked mine for 13 minutes) at 375 degrees. Makes 112 cookies.