Sunday, June 27, 2010

Fury Baby Shower Cake

My dear friends Cat and Scott are expecting their first child in August (though we all think she will give birth in July) and this weekend was her baby shower.  I had the honor of doing the cake.  She wanted the cake to match the theme for the baby's room, if possible, so naturally I made it possible, anything for baby Fury.

I was super excited when I saw this, because I have grown a fondness for fondant animals! So I made a design to maktch this design and viola, a cake was born.  Here are some of the stages of this chocolate cake with peanut butter buttercream icing. First I made the cake toppers, a little puppy and a cow.

The cow you may remember, because I made a similar one for Lila's cake, Lila's Farm.  The puppy was fun... he is all fondant and painted with brown food coloring.
The cow is the same, fondant and food coloring for some of the spots.
I made the bottom tier to be yellow, green and red stripes to match the fabric pattern, and the top tier was made to look like the animal blocks.  Each side having a different animal.  All animals in the pattern are depicted on the cake.
The animal faces were cut out of fondant and painted with food coloing.  Here is the pig side.  I'm used to doing pink pigs, but the pattern had a white pig, so white it was.  I chose to do the blue sky for each block, and included the cloud, sun and butterfly elements of the pattern to tie it all together.
The next side is the Monkey side.  Again the pattern called for a gray monkey instead of a brown one, so gray it is!
The Bunny side was next.  I drew on the cute little whiskers with edible markers.  The butterfly "fly lines" and the sun rays were also done with the edible markers.
And here is the final side, the Bear side.  I really enjoy this side the most.  I was able to paint the bear in a swirly motion so that he looked fluffy!
Here are the cake toppers, the two remaining animals from the pattern that didnt get a block.  They sat atop a cloud.
And here is the finished product...
The mommy and daddy to be were very excited to see their cake.  Daddy Fury was even more excited because inside was his favorite... Chocolate and Peanut Butter!!

All in all, i was very pleased with this new creation.  It took a little over 4 hours, which is becoming my norm... I guess i'm not quite ready for the cake challenges yet... but i do work alone, so that might play into it as well.

I hope you liked it... check back soon... I have plans of making some beer wheat bread this week... and MAYBE some lemon meringue cupcakes! :-)

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Duffins for Fathers Day

About a month ago a co-worker shared with me a story about a "Duffin", a cross between a doughnut and a muffin.  I've wanted to make one since I read about it.  When my parents suggested brunch to celebrate Fathers Day, and asked if I would do a sweet, I instantly though... this is the time... DUFFINS!!!!  I mixed all the dry ingredients last night and brought all the finishing components so I could throw them together and bake them at my parents house... The result was a yummy, warm, sugary goodness that had the family fighting over the last one.

Here is the light fluffy batter....

Here are a few shots of the finished product...

Here is the light, fluffy airy inside... they had a wonderful consistency and were so soft and perfectly sweet.  They reminded me of an old-fashioned sugar/cinnamon cake donut.

When I got home, I didnt have any leftovers for John's parents, so I had to make another batch!

These came out slightly better in my opinion.  Granted, I had already made them once now, so it was easier to put them together than working with uncharted territory like I did this morning.  One thing I can say for certain... DO NOT grease your pans with butter... it definitely makes your edges darker.  This time I used my trusty spray, and they looked perfect.  So perfect in fact that John's dad, Big John, couldn't wait to get his hands on one!

Happy Father's Day to all the daddy's out there!!!!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Chocolate Canolli Cupcakes

These were very simple, but very rich.  I whipped up a batch of simple chocolate cake batter... nothing crazy, nothing too special... Then I made some canolli cream... which for being an Irish girl, is actually pretty good... smooth, just the right sweetness, texture, the whole nine.  I added some mini chocolate chips, which made piping the first couple a chore, but I figured it out.  I filled the cooled cupcakes with the canolli cream and allowed a little of the filling to peak out the top as I had decided from the get go to not ice them.  Icing would have been too heavy and too sweet.  I know what you are thinking, can a "sweet" be too sweet... in my book, yes!  I like them just sweet enough that you want some cold milk to accompany, but not to get through it!! So... I just dusted the cupcakes with powdered sugar, and viola... served!

P.S... they were best served cold... but then I had to re-sugar the tops... but that actually made for a nice little glaze under the fresh dusting! Sometimes goof-ups and good! ;-)

Monday, June 7, 2010

Special Treat

My amazing and wonderful boyfriend was having a very rough week at work, so I wanted to make him a special treat to feel better!  Guys aren't into flowers like us ladies are, at least not many of the guys I know... but I do know they love food.  I also know that my sweethearts two favorite treats are chocolate chip cookies and peanut butter cups... sooo... this is what I came up with... Chocolate chip cookie peanut butter cups!!

First I made chocolate chip cookie dough batter, and then pressed it into mini muffin tins, just enough to cover the bottom of each cup, and and pressed my thumb into it to make a little indent... then I piped in melted Reese's peanut butter chips into the indent and covered with more cookie dough, and baked!

As I mentioned, I used the mini muffin tin, so they were small like peanut butter cups... just a little bigger!

I drizzled the top with more melted peanut butter chips, which hardened nicely as it cooled.

Its hard to see the gooey center, but when still warm, it was all gooey! and yummy! A two-biter, or if you are my dear boyfriend, a single biter!

Quite a success! He was very happy, took a few to lunch with him every day, and they were gone in a flash...