Posts Tagged ‘Valentine’s Day’

More Valentine’s Day Treats

Thursday, February 14th, 2008

Life has been quite hectic these past couple of days with Valentine’s Day orders…lots of fun, but little sleep.  I thought I would share with you some of the photos of the final products I did for a couple clients.  Hope you enjoy them!  These first photos are some new cookie designs I tried out and brought to my hair dresser as an early Valentine’s Day present.  I love this packaging from Garnish and so did she!  I really think that cute packaging makes all the difference when you are selling a product or giving a gift…first impressions really do count.  Garnish also liked my idea and blogged about it again…yippee!  

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Here a few more cookies & cupcakes that I did.

 

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Here is a Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie I did for a client…yummy!  It has an oreo crust, peanut butter mousse-like filling and chocolate ganache on top.  I also personalized it for him so that it would be extra special!

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Happy Valentine’s Day!

A dozen roses or a dozen rose cupcakes? . . . I’d pick the cupcakes!

Tuesday, February 5th, 2008

I found myself yet again playing with new and old designs for cupcakes.  These cupcakes would be perfect for Valentine’s Day or any day you want to show someone special that you are thinking of them.  There are a couple of ways out there to make roses, but this is one way that I have learned to make them that simplifies the process, since the roses are piped directly onto the cupcake. However, if you want to pipe the roses onto a piece of parchment on a rose nail and then transfer them to the cupcake, you can do that too.  Now to make these kind of decorations you need to use a meringue based buttercream, not a traditional powdered sugar and butter one.  You can find a great recipe for Swiss Meringue Buttercream at Martha Stewart.com.  I will post up the recipes I used for these cupcakes later today.  

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First you need to color your buttercream the desired colors you want.  Remember you want a base color, leaf color, and petal color.  You can find great gel-based colors at Kitchen Krafts or Pfeil & Holing.  Now the colors tend to get darker/brighter over time, so if your red doesn’t look deep enough, let it rest a little and then check on it.  

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I then spread the white frosting over my cupcakes with a small offset spatula, being carefully not to get any crumbs in it.  

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You then need to fill a pastry bag or zip-lock bag with the color of the rose you are using, in my case red, and then start in the center and pipe a straight cone about 1 1/2″ high.  To make your cones perfectly round you can place a round tip in your piping bag, before filling it, like I did.  I used a round #804.  You want the base to be thicker than the tip, so make sure and pull up your pastry bag when you are about to release pressure.  Once you have piped the cones, you need to put them back in the refrigerator so that the frosting can set up enough to support the petals.  

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Now it’s time to pipe the petals.  Now if you are using a coupler (a tool that helps you to switch out tips, when you are using the same color) you can just switch out the round tip for the petal/rose tip…I used a #127.  If you don’t have a coupler though, just add the pastry tip to your bag and cut off the tip of the bag so that the metal tip comes through.  Now to pipe your first petal, you want the thin side up of the petal tip pointing up and you want to start piping at the top of the cone and then pulling down the petal to the base.  While you are piping, slightly turn the cupcake so that that petal forms around the cone.

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Continue to pipe two more petals on the cone, so that it is completely covered.  

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Now you are onto your second row.  You can choose to do 3 large petals on this row or 5 smaller petals…always pipe in odd numbers though, because it helps the rose look more realistic.  After you have finished your second row, move onto the last row.  However these petals are slightly different…this time you need to start at the base of the rose with your tip and then wrap/curve around the petals (sort of like a rainbow is…low at the start, with a higher middle, and then a low base again).  Here is a finished rose.

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At this point you can add leaves or other decorations like sanding sugar or dragees…both can be found at The Baker’s Kitchen.  To make leaves you can either use a leaf tip or you can cut your pastry bag to make a leaf tip.  To do that you need to cut you bag’s tip straight across, about 3/4″-1″ up.  Now you have a flat line and you need to cut an upside “V”.  Make your first cut from one side of the pastry bag tip and angle the cut up to the center of the bag (about 1/4″-1/2″ up).  Next, cut the other side the same way.  The larger your first cut is, the larger you leaf will be.  Your bag should look like this. Once your bag is made, fill it will the buttercream.  When you go to pipe the leafs you need to make sure one of the pointed tips is pointing up (the tip should look like a bird’s open beak).  Now put pressure on the bag, slowly pull back, and then release and pull.  

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OR if you don’t want to make leaves, you can decorate the base with dragees or sanding sugar like I have done here too.

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Also, here is another photo of a cupcake using the embossing technique on fondant that I described in an earlier post.

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So Exciting!

Monday, February 4th, 2008

I was so excited today to find out that my idea was posted on Garnish’s blog. Like I have said in the past, this company has such creative products for your food and they have even created a blog to share with you ideas of how you can use your products for that next special event. I can’t wait until I find the next way to use their adorable products!  I think today is my lucky day because today I was also featured in the #1 Cupcake Blog, Cupcakes Take the Cake.  You can check out the spread they put up of my photos if you go to their blog! 

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Embossed Valentine’s Day Cupcakes

Saturday, February 2nd, 2008

Using embossed fondant on decorated cupcakes is yet another way to bring out the stylish side of your yummy treats.  This technique is extremely easy and very user friendly…a perfect project even for kids!  

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The first step in making this type of embellishment is to find the perfect stamping device.  You can buy any type of stamp/embossing tool that you like, but just make sure the the design is clear and deep, otherwise the image won’t appear as nicely.  I found some really great clear stamps at Target.  The brand name is Autumn Leaves and this is their new Clear Stamp Set.  You can find them online too at Scrapbook.com.  I bought one of their swirly whirly designs for these cupcakes, but here is a photo of another one of their adorable stamp sets just so you can see what they look like.

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Once you have your stamps, you need to get out your fondant and knead it for a while until it is nice and smooth.  You can color your fondant too, but I would recommend coloring it the night before if you want a specific color, since the shades tend to change over night.  Roll out your fondant to about 1/8″-1/4″.  If your fondant is sticking then lightly dust the surface and the fondant with cornstarch.  Once you have the desired thickness, start pushing your stamps into the fondant to create the design you want.  Then cut out the shape you want with a cookie cutter.  You can do this beforehand and let them dry if you prefer (just not the circle shape that is suppose to cover the whole cupcake).  

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Once you have your shapes cut out you can decorate you cupcake in whatever way you heart leads you to.  To add shimmer/sparkle to your fondant you can brush Luster Dust onto the fondant with a small painting brush.  Here are a few designs that I did.  Again, if you have any questions please feel free to ask!

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Oh, here is one way you can package them too.  I used the clear boxes from Garnish and just added some M&M’s on the bottom and a pretty bow and you have yourself a delightful little gift.

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Valentine’s Day Cupcakes

Friday, February 1st, 2008

Since Valentine’s Day is just around the corner I wanted to post up some directions for fun Valentine’s Day Cupcakes that everyone can do. First start off by baking up your favorite batch of cupcakes and frosting…you can find really cute cupcake liners online at the Confectionery House and if you don’t have a favorite cupcake or frosting recipe you can find the most delicious recipes at The Cupcake Bakeshop by Chockylit. Once your cupcakes have baked and are completely cool and your frosting is prepared you can start. To make these adorable heart cupcakes you need to first buy chocolate transfer sheets, which can be found online at Fancy Flours or American Chocolate Designs.

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Place your chocolate transfer sheet on a flat surface that can be transported, like a cookie sheet. Have the shiny part facing down at the table, so that the cocoa butter design is on top.

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Depending on what size of chocolate transfer paper you want to cover, melt enough chocolate (any kind is fine) to cover the sheet. You want the chocolate to be about 1/8th” thick. You can either melt the chocolate in a glass bowl over a pot of simmering water (don’t let the water touch the bowl) or you can melt it in the microwave on 30 second intervals. Once it is melted, pour the chocolate over the transfer sheet and spread with an offset spatula.

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Once the chocolate is evenly spread, place the sheet in the refrigerator until the chocolate is dull and not shiny anymore. You want the chocolate to be just set. If the chocolate is completely hard then just leave the sheet at room temperature until it softens slightly. Once the chocolate is ready, push the desired cookie cutter into it and push down hard. If the piece don’t come off easily, then once you have punched out all of your shapes place the sheet back into the refrigerator until the chocolate is completely set and then break pieces apart. These pieces can be made ahead of time and left in the refrigerator until you are ready to use. If you want even more intricate instructions on chocolate transfer sheets you can go to Fancy Flours and they have a instruction sheet about them. So once your cupcakes are ready, pipe on your frosting with a large star tip in a swirl design or whatever you prefer and then place the chocolate transfer design on top. If you have anymore questions feel free to leave me a comment and I will get back to you!

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New Laser Cut Cupcake Wrappers

Wednesday, January 23rd, 2008

Just out…these new laser cut cupcake wrappers will take your cupcakes to the next level.  They come in various designs for every kind of occasion.  This product is definitely on the expensive side, costing $11.99 for 12 wrappers, but is worth it if you want a show stopper of a dessert.  The baby shower theme wrappers are adorable and would look great at your next baby shower.  The wrappers can be found at various online stores, but the cheapest I found them was at shopbakersnook.com

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