Saturday, October 20, 2012

For a tea party

Just a quick post. I made this yesterday for a kids' Alice in Wonderland themed annual tea party. It is supposed to be the Mad Hatter's hat but I added some decorations so it doesn't look too plain.  This is a chocolate cake with buttercream.  All decorations were made of modeling chocolate.
I covered the entire cake base with green modeling chocolate so it looks like the hat's brim.

I used roses, daisies, and pansies since these were the flowers in the Disney movie.
Of course you have to have a tea pot and tea cups :) I guess I should have added little cookies that says "Eat Me" for an added touch. Oh well, next time.

Monday, October 15, 2012


I finally get a chance to post this! It's raining outside, I have nothing planned this afternoon, no after school activities, and best of all, dinner is cooking in the crock pot! Wish everyday would be like this! Life would be so much easier :)

So I made this cake a couple of weekends ago for a baby shower. This was so much fun to make! Simple, not too complicated.  I just love simple cakes :)

This picture is a bit overexposed.  I think I was getting lazy taking a picture! I didn't snap a lot at all, and this is the best one I got.

More bees! An Amy Atlas inspired bee.  When you get a chance, check out her book "Sweet Designs".  She has a whole chapter on beehive inspired party.
Wanna learn how to make this? Check out the picture below.  You can use modeling chocolate, fondant, or marzipan.  And you need some slivered almonds for the wings. But first, color/dye your "medium" with yellow and black.
Step 1: Roll your medium into "snakes", cut small pieces then roll into a ball.
Step 2:  Line up the balls, alternating black and yellow; beginning and ending with black. Taper the last black ball to look like the bee's stinger.
Step 3:  Push the balls together gently so they stick together, notice that the size gets smaller.
Step 4: Press in the slivered almonds in an angle. Pinch off 2 small pieces of the yellow medium, then roll into small balls and use as eyes.

This little bee can be made large and would be a fun little activity/project for the kiddos.  Just use playdough or if they want to keep it longer, use an air dry clay.  That way, they can paint it too.  Or if you're feeling really crafty, you may even use a salt dough :) By the way, you'll probably have to make your own wings.  Or, depending on how big of a bee you're making, you can just go outside and find leaves!  Have fun!!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

What's for lunch?

Just want to share this quick and simple recipe to you.  I've been having a hard time lately thinking of what to pack for lunch for my first grader. He doesn't really like getting food from the school cafeteria (I guess that's a good thing!) and he's actually not a very picky eater (he does eat brocolli and sushi!).  But I guess it's just me trying to figure out what's a quick and fun lunch to pack in the morning (ok, I know, I guess I should pack at night but I don't want him to eat soggy sandwiches and cold soup--he loves packing soup!).  So, here's a fun and quick lunch for you (or your child) :)

Ham and Cheese pockets
Took me about 5 minutes to prepare,10-12 minutes in the oven, and only 3 ingredients: store bought, oven ready crescent rolls (the seamless kind), ham, and cheese. So first, unroll the dough and cut out shapes using cookie cutter. Make sure you cut out 2 for each pocket.  Since it's fall, I used a leaf cookie cutter.  Then top one "cut out" with cheese and ham then cover it with another "cut out" then pinch the edges to seal using a fork.  Place in a baking sheet and bake at 375 F preheated oven for about 10-12 minutes. Done!
Taken before baking.  The one on the lower right is actually Hello Kitty-for the girl :)
You can also change the filling in this pocket. Don't like ham? Use turkey, or even chicken. You can add whatever you want! Whatever suits your mood :) And instead of using crescent rolls, you  may even use puff pasty.  One time I even made chicken pot pies ( I guess I should call it chicken pocket pies!) with this method using pie crust.
This one is actually filled with hazelnut chocolate spread.  Yup, if you don't want something savory, you can make it with sweets too! I've made apple pie pockets before too with this method (again, just use pie crust instead of crescent dough). 
Enjoy your lunch!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Working with Marzipan

Here's a cake I made this past weekend for a friend of mine.  Her son is allergic to gluten so this is actually gluten free cake. I think I've refined my recipe for a vanilla gluten free cake--the taste and texture is starting to get really close to a "normal" vanilla cake.  Because of the gluten allergy, I have to be really careful of what to put in for decorations. Last time I made a gluten free cake, I used fondant.  But this time I didn't really want to make one so I decided to use marzipan.  Luckily the birthday boy is not allergic to almonds! I thought it would save me some time if I just bought the ready made marzipan from the grocery store.  Wrong! I bought one then when I got home I read the ingredients then it said it contained wheat! Well, there goes that idea!  So I ended up whipping up marzipan from scratch! It was easier than I thought it would be.  Scroll down below to see more cake pictures.
This is my first time working with marzipan.  Not quite sure yet if I actually like working with it or not. 

The theme of the party was Noah's Ark.  I actually made a pair of each animal.  But when I started putting them on the cake, they won't fit! So, I decided to just ditch their partners :)  Still looked ok, I thought. But it still kinda bothers me that I couldn't put the pair!
I was going to leave the cake like this.  Somehow, I liked the simplicity of this.  I sent a picture of the cake to my friend to see if she approves.  She asked if maybe I could add a little more to the sides, like maybe some stripes.
I like this picture! It almost looks like the giraffe and the lion are having a conversation! "Hey Lion, what ya doin'?" "Oh hey Giraffe, just chillin'." Hahaha!

Stripes or no stripes?  I think they both grew on me :)