Archive | May, 2011

this is what happens when I don’t follow the rules…

31 May

It started with an adorable sketch of a three layer, fun-filled and decorated birthday cake for my niece, Madeline.

It ended as a six layer, fun-filled and decorated birthday cake for my niece, Madeline.

The middle wasn’t pretty.

I broke one of the GOLDEN rules of baking a cake – I didn’t use parchment paper. No, I didn’t run out, no I didn’t even forget. I literally held the box in my hand and thought to myself, just the Pam will work fine on these pans. Nope, it didn’t. I baked an enormous (14-inch, I think) orange-dyed yellow cake as well as a chubby 6-inch version of the same and 75% of it went in the garbage. 15% went in my stomach and 10% made it into a very thin 14-inch cake layer that I ended up incorporating into the final product.

I baked my favorite, Paula Deen recipe, and the cake baked perfectly, seriously just my incorrect prepping that a failed me, and also led to this video.

After the giant whoops, I baked two separate boxes of brownies in an 8 and 9 inch circle pan and froze them along with the salvaged tiny layer. I almost called it a day on the cake and was going to serve the flat, mini thing. Then I remembered I’m trying to be the best aunt ever so I started over and re-baked those garbage cakes (plus one more 6-inch layer).

Suddenly I had the biggest cake ever for 20 people, but at least everyone got leftovers.

I used my favorite buttercream recipe for the outside and dyed the batches purple and teal, then I filled the layers will chocolate pudding and crushed Oreos per the birthday girl’s request. And then, because I really am trying to regain my “Best Aunt” status, I bought a set of Barrel of Monkey’s and stuck those little plastic green critters all around the Dora/Diego masterpiece. And I created a delicious, fun-filled and decorated birthday cake for my niece, Madeline.

Happy 4th Birthday!!!

Mother’s Day Mash-Up

11 May

I’ve been wanting to experiment with this cupcake technique for years, and I finally did it last Sunday for Mother’s Day.

I’ve seen a handful of magazines displaying two-toned cupcakes and never had the energy to do it myself, but I definitely will again. Aside from the amazing taste, they were super cute!

I made the brownies out of a box, of course, but added a little flair with chopped up milk chocolate bars and white chocolate chips, then I made these red velvet cupcakes, but I made them light pink instead. They tasted nothing like a traditional red velvet cupcake, which was good for me because I’m not really a fan of the heaviness usually associated with them. These were strangely corn muffin-like, but very yummy and the pairing of the dense brownie and the fluffy cupcake was a fun one.

After I baked and cooled them, I sliced them in half or used a cookie cutter to swap the middles, then I whipped up some frosting, again from this recipe, but I added whipping cream, cocoa powder and melted chocolate chips, super amazing.

You can watch me in action here, and drool over these pictures. Happy Mother’s Day! I can’t wait to swap some cupcake tops again soon!

My life is busy, but at least it’s dessert-filled again!

5 May

So I have been a terrible blogger and dessert documenter, I’m sorry. Forgive me. Right now I’m trying to balance 100 things at once, but at least I can do it with a cookie in my hand again!

Lent is over! And although my jeans are tighter (whoops), my chocolate-levels are back to where they belong. As soon as the clock hit midnight on Easter morning I rushed home from work, gobbled up 5 frozen oatberry cookies and half my Easter basket. Delish.

(PS – the oatberries were frozen from when I was so nice enough to make them for all of my friends, family, co-workers and classmates – and my favorite Sweet Talk Live I’ve done so far!)

But more importantly I baked my substitute birthday cake for my family, complete with a ganache covering.

You see, this was my actual “birthday cake.”

A bowl of yogurt with berries. It was actually pretty delicious, but not a birthday cake by any means.

This was my Easter birthday cake.

Fabulous brownie circles with chocolate chips and m&ms running through them, filled with an Oreo buttercream frosting and topped with a milk chocolate ganache. It was exceptional death by chocolate and I wish I had all the ingredients in my house right now. Maybe I can just stare at these pictures and relive the wonderfulness.

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