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Monthly Archives: October 2011

Fun With Fondant

I’ve discovered that fondant has a few more uses than just to cover a cake. Honestly, I think that covering a cake well is one of the hardest parts about using fondant. Its always easy to roll it out and make the top look nice and smooth. But when it comes to smoothing out the sides, it becomes a little bit harder to make sure that it’s nice and smooth with no wrinkles. It’s also really pretty easy to roll it out and cut it into the shapes needed for your decorations.

Since it has the consistency like that of play-doh, it’s very easy to use and is super pliable. Take this cake for my boss’ son’s second birthday. At the time he was a big fan of cars, especially the Disney movie Cars, and trains. My boss and his wife are also slightly germophobes, so they had asked for two cakes; one for everyone and one for him to blow out the candles on, called a ‘spit-cake,’ in case he spits a little bit while blowing out the candles. The cake for everyone was the Lightning McQueen cake that I posted previously. The spit cake is this one with the little train on it. The train is only made out of fondant and pieced together to make the little train car.

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Another cake that I have used fondant to mold and make a 3-D decoration out of was this collage cake I made a for a friend’s parents. It was their anniversary and a Christmas time cake. It highlighted the college his parents met, the restaurant they own, where they’ve lived and a Christmas tree of course for the holiday season

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Cake Flavored Alcohol = Winning

Yesterday, October 26th was my friend Faith’s birthday. Unfortunately, I was way too busy this week and dust have time to make her one. Fortunately, one of the girls that we work with insisted that she’d make her one. Instead I made her a little birthday cake shot. As most of you might know, I work at a bar, so we came up with a special little shot for her

We recently got one of the newest Three Olives vodka flavors, which happens to be cake flavored. Naturally when I saw the bottle I was ecstatic- cake and vodka are two of my favorite things. Below is the shot that we came up with, it consists of cake vodka, vanilla infused whipped cream and sprinkles.

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One of my favorite shows ever is Ace of Cakes with Duff Goldman. There is an episode where Duff was asked to make a cake for ‘Lebowski-Fest.’ So for those who haven’t seen The Big Lebowski, first of all you’re missing out and second if all, the main character, The Dude, only drinks white russians. And for those who have seen the movie, Duff and his team made a giant severed toe. They also drenched the cake in vodka and mixed kahlua into the buttercream frosting

Now, because of that episode and this delicious vodka and whipped cream, I’ve decide that one of my next goals is to make a drunk cake. Since the cake vodka basically tastes like funfetti cake, I figure I’ll make a funfetti cake, let it cool, and then pour the vodka into the cake so that it soaks in. Next. I’ll take the vodka infused whipped cream and mix it in with the frosting.

I’m pretty sure that this cake will definitely have to be kept in a fridge or freezer or eaten quickly-to avoid the cake becoming too soggy

Pumpkin spice cake

Every year around this time, I start getting requests from all of my friends asking for pumpkin spice cake. The recipe that I use makes the most delicious and moist cake. I’m pretty sure that last year alone, I made a pumpkin spice cake (sometimes 2) a week. A few years ago, I had found a recipe that was pretty good but the next couple times I made it, I altered it a little bit. I also use a homemade cream cheese frosting because it tends to be richer, creamier and way more delicious.

Earlier today, I decided to really get into the fall spirit and make some cakes for my friends. The recipe is as follows, but I will disclose that it makes a lot of cake batter! For example, today I made 24 mini cupcakes, 12 regular sized cupcakes, a 4-inch round cake and a 6-inch round cake

•2 cups flour
•2 tsp baking soda
•3 tsp baking powder
•1/4 tsp salt
•2 tsp cinnamon
•2 cups sugar
•3/4 cup oil
•1 tsp vanilla
•4 eggs
•2 cups (canned) pumpkin
•2 cups chopped walnuts (optional)

-Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Set aside

-Mix sugar, oil, and vanilla. Blend in eggs one at a time. Mix in pumpkin

-Gradually mix in the flour mixture

-Bake about 30 minutes at 350° depending on the pan sizes

A lot of my friends really like my cream cheese frosting so I tend to make a little extra. I also don’t usually measure how much powdered sugar I use. I’m also a big fan of cream cheese so I usually use a lot.

•1/2 cup butter
•12 oz cream cheese
•2 tsp vanilla
•2-3 cups powdered sugar

-Cream butter and cream cheese. Gradually add vanilla and powdered sugar to taste and consistency

Personally when I make pumpkin spice cakes, I don’t usually use fondant to decorate them because I feel that the sugary taste of the fondant distracts from the cake and frosting.
These are some of the first pumpkin spice cakes that I made. They were for my mom while we carved pumpkins a few years ago

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These are the last few cupcakes that i made and a school spirited cake that I made today 🙂

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Beer + Cupcakes = Genius

I once dated a guy who was a big beer drinker. Because of him, I started drinking different types of beers and learning what beers can be paired with certain foods. I started following different cake blogs to find new recipes and get ideas for new cakes
One website that I did find is a little place in Spokane, Washington called Sweet and Stout. There, they have mixed beer in with their recipes to make beer cupcakes. Since I’ve discovered that I thoroughly enjoy pumpkin beers, darker ales and flavored stouts, I think that some of these cupcakes would be pretty delicious. I will be sure to continue to follow their blog and twitter and try some of their recipes if I can find the right beers to incorporate.
There are a few recipes I definitely saw that I think would be really awesome to try.  This first one I saw is a chocolate pumpkin cheesecake cupcake. Since this cupcake basically adds together three of my favorite things, I will have to try to replicate these somehow.  I love pumpkin spice cakes, especially around this time of year, but I find that the thought of adding beer, chocolate and cheesecake in the cupcakes would make it awesomely different.

Another recipe that I saw that I would really like to try is one that is a smoked porter maple bacon cupcake, made with Alaskan Smoked Porter, maple cream cheese frosting and bacon bits.  The way I see it is you can’t go wrong with a nice dark porter, cream cheese frosting and bacon!

My brother is going to Spokane this week, so naturally I’m going to have him go by the shop and try them for me.

A few faves

In only about 2 years, I feel like I have made a lot of cakes, especially the fact that I’ve made them all for friends and family members. I have definitely acquired a few favorite cakes, as I think would anyone. I can’t really say yet that I have a favorite, but I have been able to narrow it down to my top five favorite cakes so far.

One of which is this San Francisco Giants cake. l made it just for fun one day, trying to get some cake practice in. This is my favorite baseball team and I happened to have a lot of this chocolate fondant, which makes for a good ‘almost-black’ color. I added the little orange ribbon around the bottom to add some color, and made little orange balls to go around the top tier. Then, of course I traced the SF logo for the top part

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One of my other favorites, sticking to the sports theme, was a San Francisco 49ers cake for my brother’s 25th birthday. It was a white cake with banana pudding as the center. I added a brown ribbon and field goal posts. Like the Giants cake, I included little balls around the top tier, this time in the shape of footballs. Next, using black, yellow, red, and white fondant, I made the 49ers logo. I also used black food coloring to outline the ‘SF’

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Another top favorite cake of mine was made for a friend. While I think we an all agree that everyone in my generation has to like the Ninja Turtles, no matter who you are, my friends are no exception. Naturally, I made my friend a Ninja Turtles cake. Once again. I put a brown ribbon around the bottom part for extra color. Then I cut out four turtle heads and made bandanas in their respective colors. For the finishing touch, I added the eyeballs and mouths 🙂

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Don’t mess this one up

One of the hardest things to do when someone wants a really detailed cake, is to make sure everything is right and perfect.  Sometimes it’s really hard to make sure that it is perfect.  This is one of the reasons that I make sure I lay everything out and arrange it how I’ll want it before attaching everything for good.  Not to say that I have been perfect on all my cakes, and I’m sure that at some point I’ll mess one up but in the meantime, I’ll try to make sure they are all on point.

I found this website recently,  CakeWrecks, which is hilarious.  It is a blog that has really funny cakes that have gone horribly wrong.  It definitely make me feel a little better for anytime that a cake of mine has become messed up.  Not only do they have the ridiculously funny cakes, but they also include some really awesome and good looking cakes too.

Yesterday, this cake post was on there, I thought it was pretty cute, and feel like Steve Jobs would have appreciated it

Another one of my favorite cakes that I saw on there recently is this camouflage wedding cake on a tractor tire

 

Fondant 102

when I tell people that I decorate my cakes using fondant, they usually ask if it’s hard to use and I can tell you that it is pretty simple to do.
The first step is pretty obvious, to bake a cake and let it cool. Next is to cut the cake in half and put frosting or pudding in the center to make layers. Then cover the cake using frosting. Here I have used chocolate frosting

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The next step is to roll out the fondant. You want to make sure to roll the fondant on wax paper or powdered sugar, to make sure it doesn’t stick to the counter. You also want to roll the fondant about 1/4″ thick. There’s no need for it to be much thicker and if it’s too thin,it might crack or break. Here I have used chocolate fondant

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Next you want to lay the fondant over the cake and using both hands smooth it out over the cake. You want to start on the top and work toward the edges and down the sides

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Next, I use a pizza cutter to cut off the excess around the edge and make it look clean

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Next, figure out the design that is going to be used and make the desired colors you need, if necessary, using gel food coloring. Like before, I’ll the fondant out 1/4″ and cut out the designs needed, using cookie cutters like I have here, or using an exacto knife works well too

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As you can probably guess, you place the designs in the cake. When you’re satisfied with the placement, you can ‘glue’ them on, using frosting or a little bit of water. Then you can show off how pretty your cakes are! 🙂

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