Thursday, September 16, 2010

Lemon Flavored Crack

Okay, not P.C., but I have found the world's best frosting. Seriously, literally (and I use that word literally because I hate when people misuse it). I'm not really a sweets kind of person, though I love to bake. But I can sit with this stuff in a bowl and eat it for days. What is this magic elixir? This ambrosia sent to us lowly baking souls from the gods of the flour and the baking soda? It's swiss meringue buttercream. Martha Stewart has, yet again, won my heart with her recipes. When you have to give a recipe in POUNDS of butter, you know it's gonna be good. So I needed an excuse to make some and came up with two!

Reason #1- My particularly attractive, previously pregnant friend has a newborn at home who is more concerned with his next meal or pooping to give him mom much free time. So I decided she deserved baked goods. :)

Reason #2- The hubbin got a new boss at TCTMNBN. And since his coworkers are my usual guinea pigs, she needed a "Welcome to the Company" cupcake. The hubbin ditched my idea of spelling out "Welcome New Mary" in fondant on the cupcakes.

I dubbed this batch my Strawberry lemonade cake. Though it was pretty skimpy on the strawberries. I was using the rest of the ones I got on sale and I was too cheap to go buy some more. The batter was my go-to vanilla. I'm pretty boring apparently, this is one of my favorite cakes to eat. It tastes like sugar cookies, and who doesn't love them? I chopped up strawberries and added them to the batter. The frosting is Martha's Swiss Meringue Buttercream (see link above). But I dumped in some fresh lemon juice. Melinda declared that she liked her shower cake better, the hubbin declared it wasn't "my best" but I ate like 6 of the dang cupcakes and loved it.

Don't judge me by my frosting or piping abilities- It's rusty with all the fondant here lately and I was running low on frosting (again). But I did bust out my flower making skills from my Wilton's classes and added some roses that were totally off-center. You can find Melinda's pictures of the cake (which I told her couldn't show anything but the flowers since the frosting looks so bad) AND of her particularly attractive baby boy, Camden, on her blog. She has some nice shots of the roses to show you that not everything on this looked like crap.

For the cupcakes, I really like the idea of having tiny little decorations on each of them. So I made some tiny little flowers, then added my pearl drages to them cause I liked it, then I remembered I had some green fondant leftovers and added a leaf. I love them.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Making a Splash

I was approached to make a birthday cake for a little boy celebrating a big birthday, his first one!

Meet Miles-

Miles' momma, Cammie, told me that he really likes to go swimming, so she wanted some sort of pool cake. This is him in his swimming outfit. Check out those beautiful blue eyes!  Cammie wanted a two tier cake, one for the party guests and one just for Miles, and I found this cake on my favorite cake website. We decided to make figures of Miles doing different pool stuff, and I told Cammie I had to include his blue swimming hat. :) So without further ado:

The cake! My go-to Magnolia Bakery vanilla cake, ganache filling, and chocolate buttercream.

The Mileses!

I added an umbrella as I was sketching, I thought it was sorta cute. And thanks to an evening run to Wal-Mart by the hubbin', I thought it came out pretty cute. It's made of gumpaste, which hardens better than fondant and is more sturdy since it was going to be wobbling off the side of the cake. I rolled out the green and the brown fairly thin and stacked them, then cut the openings in the brown so the green would show through. The perfectly round shape? I draped it over a Styrofoam ball that I covered in plastic wrap. Brilliant!

Diving board- It was a pool, I thought it appropriate.

Beachball- Cammie asked for some pool toys. I had beach balls, noodles of varying colors, swim rings, and one of those inflatable rubber ducky ring things.

The view from the top. The water is piping gel tinted with food coloring. I'd read a note online someone had made that said to use the coloring sparingly because the piping gel gets dark really fast, she wasn't kidding! This was my sky blue!

But of course the nice blue gel makes a nice big mess when the birthday boy gets into it. :)

Happy 1st Birthday Miles!