Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Memorial Day Cupcakes!

I knew I wanted to make some Memorial Day Cupcakes, and I've had some fondant I bought a while ago still sitting around in the package because it intimidated me. But this past weekend, I conquered it! I planned everything out and knew exactly what I wanted to do.

I had to work all weekend, so I started to make cute little toppers the night before.

Problem #1- The rolled fondant I had was pastel. I had originally bought it for Easter. But you can't use pastel's for Memorial Day!

Solution- I decided to try and tint it darker. I broke out my food dye and started with the pink. First stuck the pink fondant in a small zip lock baggie and added the red food dye. I kneaded the fondant (while in the bag) with the red dye. Keeping it in the bag kept my hands and workplace neat and clean! As I was doing it I found that it was difficult to get a deep even red color but I'm really happy with how it came'll see what I mean in a little bit. I repeated the same process with the light blue fondant.

Problem #2- After I rolled the red out flat, I realized that I didn't have a round cutter to make the base of my topper.

Solution- Sprinkle Bottle Cap! It worked to make the perfect size base for my toppers!

Next I used a small star cutter from William's Sonoma to cut out my blue stars. Making these was easier than I thought and most of the tools I used were everyday kitchen items.

tools 3

Rolling Pin (used to roll out fondant)
Zip Lock Bag (helped me tint the fondant)
Red Food Dye
Fondant Shaping/Molding tools
Cheese Knife (used to lift the fondant shape off wax paper)
Sprinkle Cap (used to cut the base)
Star Cutter
Wax Paper

So I wanted to store these until the next day when I would be making my cupcakes. So I stuck them in an airtight container.

toppers 7

I love how they came out looking like TYE DYE!

So the next morning I started to make the cupcakes, Red Velvet of course. While my Cupcakes were baking I assembled my toppers. I used a little drop of water to attach the star to the base. After baking them and letting them cool. I frosted them with Vanilla icing and sprinkled about half of the Cupcakes. Then I frosted the other half (still using Vanilla) and topped them with the toppers. Next I used Clear Sparkling Sugar on the icing around the toppers. If you get sugar on the topper, just used a small paint brush to brush it off. I am so excited they came out as they did! ADORABLE!

memorial day cupcakes 9

memorial day cupcakes 14

memorial day cupcakes 13

memorial day cupcakes 11

memorial day cupcakes 3

memorial day cupcakes 1

To make these Cupcakes you will need:

Red Velvet Cake Mix
Vanilla Icing
Red White & Blue Sprinkles, and Non Pareils.
Fondant (and the tools listed above)
Clear Sparkling Sugar

♥ ♥ ♥


Tuesday, May 19, 2009

If Chocolate is a sin...send me to Hell!


These two things can only mean one thing....

Cookie Dough Brownies!!!!!!!!!

First, head on over to your local grocery store and as fast as you can..grab yourself some brownie and chocolate chip cookie mix. You also want to grab yourself an extra bag of chocolate chips (12 oz), Butter, & Heavy Whipping Cream. I'll tell you why a later. Got it all? Ok Good. Now I know your excited about this but try not to drive too fast when trying to get home from the grocery store, and get yourself pulled over. Somehow, I don't think the Officer would let you off easy if you told him you were rushing home to make Cookie Dough Brownies. He'd probably just look at you really funny, write you a ticket and you'd end up on Speeders on truTV. Sorry to say. So be careful.

Anyway, once your home....
Prepare you brownies and cookies as directed on the package. Spray a glass baking dish about 13 x 9 or whatever you have on hand, and pour in your brownie batter. Next form balls with the cookie dough and place them throughout the brownie batter. Sinful already I know! Once you've finished that push down on them slightly. Go ahead and bake them for 40 minutes in a preheated oven at 350 degrees. I know 40 minutes seems like a lifetime, but waiting will be worth it. PINKY PROMISE.

When you take them out of your oven...they will look like this..

Now you have to let it cool because next we are going to use those extra ingredients to make a wonderful Chocolate Ganache.

I've always wanted to make Chocolate Ganache because you can do so much with it. Top almost anything! So when I saw this Betty Crocker recipe featured on Bakerella's site and saw she used a Chocolate Ganache on top I knew I had to try that. Its super easy also.

Chocolate Ganache:

6 Tablespoons Butter
3/4 Heavy Whipping Cream
12 ounces Chocolate Chips

Heat the Butter and Heavy Whipping Cream in a saucepan until its just about to boil.
Take off the heat and add the chocolate chips.
Combine until smooth.

Top your completely cooled brownies and let stand until it has set. Mine took about 40 minutes to set. I also used a smaller dish (not 13x9) so the ganache went on thicker. Of course I could have only used half of the ganache...but I just couldn't control myself.

This is the final delicious product


Wow. Every time I look at them, my mouth waters.

Thanks Bakerella for the Chocolate Ganache recipe!
Thanks Betty for the Cookie Dough Brownies recipe!

♥ ♥ ♥

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Cupcake Pops & Bites!

My favorite thing ever to do? Make CUPCAKE POPS! So I had wanted to make some for my Mommy for Mother's Day when she comes over. Then I realized I had M&M's from Easter that I never used.


They have the cutest designs on them and are the perfect colors for Cupcake Pops!


Anyway... you know how this goes... but I just love taking step by step pictures.

You will need:

Any flavor cake (baked as directed and cooled)
Cream Cheese icing
Chocolate, Pink, and White Candy Melts.
Sprinkles of your choice.
Flower Shaped Cookie Cutter.
Lollipop Sticks.
Pink or Red M & M's.
Treat Bags.
Styrofoam Block.

SO first you bake your cake. After you let it cool for about an hour. Next crumble up your cake in a large bowl and mix in the Cream Cheese Icing. Roll your cake mixute into small balls about 1.25" - 1.5". After freezing them for about 15 minutes, shape them into more of an oblong shape. Freeze them again for 15 minutes.


Using your flower shaped cookie cutter, push the cake through about half way, you want a mound on top. Now gently push the cupcake shape out by the bottom. Once more stick those babies in the freezer. While you wait get your chocolate ready! Prepare as directed on the package.

Ok now your ready to dip!

Carefully dip the bottom of the cupcake into the chocolate. You want the chocolate to cover to the point where the mound starts. After dipping in chocolate grab a lollipop stick and dip it into chocolate and quickly stick into the bottom of the cupcake. You can lay out a sheet of wax paper to place the cupcakes on upsidedown.


I usually let it dry for about 5-7 minutes, By the time your done dipping all the rest you can start the tops! Since this is about the 3rd time i've made these i've discovered tricks. My favorite one (acutally my boyfriend figured this one out) smush the mound down GENTLY a LITTLE bit. This helps it look more like a cupcake. =) Thanks BABY! Now just hold the pop upside down and dip the top of the cupcake into the color of your choice. You need to be carefull here. You don't want the chocolate to drip too far down the sides so usually I hold it upside down for a little. Another helpful trick is to tap your wrist SLIGHTLY or to slowly wiggle the pop. Before dry add an M & M and sprinkles! Let completly dry for about 15 minutes. Then you can wrap them in a treat bag and add a pretty ribbon.

I like to use certain color tops depending on the sprinkles I want to use. My favorite look is Pink or White with Pink M&M's and pastel Nonpareils.

Look how cute they came out!


OH MY GOD! I cant take it! SO CUTE! I LOVE IT! AHH!

Of course, if your like me and didnt have enough sticks you can make them into CUPCAKE BITES!


Thanks again Bakerella!