Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Holiday Cupcake Bites

Because cake bites were such a hit I decided to amp it up a little for Christmas and make cupcake bites. I figured they'd be easier to make more festive looking. Bakerella had some on her website that were made with candy molds with a cake bite placed on top; I wanted to imitate those, but I couldn't find round candy molds in my tiny little town. So, I decided to take her cupcake pop recipe and just use that to make cupcake bites. My final conclusion: I love them!!!

First, I made two types of cake - chocolate banana and red velvet - and mixed them both with cream cheese frosting. I rolled them into ovals and pushed the bottoms through a small, star shaped cookie cutter while rounding the top part to make a cupcake like shape. I didn't think they looked like cupcakes at first; more alien like! However, I kept going. Here's what they looked like at this point ... First is the chocolate banana and second picture is the red velvet.

After being in the freezer for about 30 minutes, I took them out and dipped the bottom part (the star shape) in melted chocolate flavored almond bark. I turned the cake bite upside down on waxed paper to let the chocolate set. After letting the chocolate set, I dipped the rest of the cake (the mounded top) in red or green candy melts. I dipped the red velvet in red, and the chocolate banana in green to easily tell them apart. I also added a holiday M&M to the top and sprinkles to make them more festive. About halfway through dipping, one of the cupcakes fell apart so I had to freeze them again for 10 minutes to harden them back up, but after that it went pretty well.

I think that these are the best looking cake bites I've made! They turned out so cute!! But be warned, they are a little messy and are more time consuming then plain cake bites since you have to freeze them in between steps. However, I think the end result is worth it! I taste tested each flavor, and love them both, but do like the chocolate banana a little better! I have my husband to thank for suggesting that flavor!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Holiday Cupcakes

I found super cute Christmas baking cups during my last trip to Walmart and I had to make cupcakes. I wanted to try something different so I became adventurous in my cupcake making. I did just a basic yellow cake. I filled the cups 1/3 full, baked them for 7 minutes, then put a caramel piece in them and Kit Kat pieces. After that, I topped the cupcakes with the remaining batter. They looked so good when they came out of the oven!

Then came the fun part - decorating! I had six blue baking cups and six red, white and green ones. I started out by drawing what I wanted to do - snow, snowflakes, snowmen, peppermint swirls and Christmas trees. My drawings were cuter than the actual cupcakes though! I need to have more practice piping. My snowflakes were a little shaky looking. My first tree just looked like a green blob, but I learned for the second one! My favorites are the snowmen!

The best part is that these cupcakes taste delicious!!!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Other Shaped Cakes

After yesterday's post, I went through some pictures I have of my past attempts at shaped cakes and figured I would share them.

The first shaped cake I ever made was a NASCAR racetrack cake for my husband. He loves NASCAR and I wanted to attempt to make a car, but thought that was a little too ambitious. So, I decided to make a racetrack and just place some small diecast cars on top. The colors around the cake symbolize the different flags used - yellow caution, red caution, white flag, and checkered flag. Looking back, I wish I knew what a crumb coat was, but it didn't turn out too bad I guess!

The next cake was for a one-year-old birthday girl. This one was easy! I cut out a "1" freehand and used pink frosting with pink sprinkles. I did a little piping around the edges with purple frosting, and added some Littlest Pet Shop characters. I was proud of this one!

I also did a football shaped cake for my brother this past October. I don't really like this one. There is a lot of things I would do different. One, I would shave the top of the cake down so it wouldn't look so lopsided on top, and also change the frosting so you can see the Vikings logo. The purple gel frosting just didn't show up on this one! I used chocolate ganache frosting for the first time ever on this cake and I am proud of that though! It tasted super yummy!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Hello Kitty Cake

I was asked to make a cake for my parents' foster child who was turning 9, Rosie. She had mentioned awhile ago that she likes Hello Kitty and I am also a fan of Hello Kitty so I figured I would try to make a cake shaped like Hello Kitty. I ended up having a pretty busy work day, so the cake didn't turn out as well as I had hoped, but it was still a hit with Rosie!

I printed off Hello Kitty's
head and used that to cut out the shape in the cake. I then frosted it with vanilla frosting. I used Tootsie Rolls for the whiskers, M&Ms for the eyes, a yellow spice drop for the nose and a Fruit Roll-Up for the bow. If I would have had more time I would have done a proper crumb coat, but because I was rushed I had to just frost it so crumbs kept getting caught in the frosting! So, to try and hide them, I put glitter sprinkles on the cake. Lesson learned: use a proper crumb coating when using a white frosting!