Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Baking For A Cause

On Friday March 11, a 9.0 magnitude earthquake hit Japan unleashing a tsunami which crashed through Japan's eastern coastline sweeping buildings, cars, homes, boats, and people for miles inland.  In efforts to support the recent tragedy, I have donated my baked goods to a Japan Disaster Relief Fundraiser.  All proceeds will go to the American Red Cross

I baked up Red Velvet cupcakes, Cookies n Cream cupcakes, and brownies.  There were some yummy Snickerdoodle cookies and Peanut Butter cookies too!

Take a peek (sorry for the bad quality = cell phone pics).

You too can donate!  Please visit http://www.redcross.org/ to make a donation that will help those that have lost their homes, family members, and are living in shelters without basic living needs.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


Ahhh yes Valentine's Day.  The day when you shower your loved one with goodies.  Some say it's a "Hallmark" holiday, I say it's another reason to bake (as if I really needed one).  It's also a day to get flowers delivered to your work so that you can make your co-workers jealous.  haha what? did I say that? :)

Valentine's Day is just around the corner and while millions of men run out last minute to buy their sweetheart something special, I'll be in the kitchen baking up some yummy treats. There are endless goodies one can make and I know these days most people are looking for the most economical (aka cheapest) and easiest treats to whip up. In fact, ATTENTION MEN! You can bake this stuff too!! AND homemade is MUCH more romantic than picking up a cake at the good ol' grocery store (plus their frosting/icing is usually g.r.o.s.s.). Wow her with your baking skills! or if you have kiddos, you guys can make these together.

Check out these fun/easy (and of course yummy) ideas for treats!

ahhh yes the simple red velvet cupcake. This is the most popular cake requested on Valentine's day (duh, it's red!). Slap some cream cheese frosting on this puppy, sprinkle some red sugar and done! Make anyone's heart (and mouth) melt.

Cookies! Anyone can make these, from the little kiddos to the big guys.  The funnest part? Decorating them of course. The possibilties are endless!! Serve them on a pretty platter or wrap them up with a nice ribbon.  Everyone loves cooooookies!

These are similar to the whoopie pies I just made. VERY easy to make. Buy a kit, follow directions and BAM, red whoopie pies (they are deelish!)

These are America's favorite treat (ok maybe I made that up but it sounds true right? Just go with it). People have been making Rice Krispie Treats for decades and this is a good one if you want the little boogars to participate. They are sticky and fun...and what kid doesn't like a sticky mess.

and last, if you have zero baking skills but have the ability to buy a cute little jar like this one (find one at your local Michael's, WalMart, JoAnn's) buy some brownie bites (although they are seriously easy to make but buy if you must) fill them up in a jar and wrap some decorative ribbon around it for a homemade (almost) treat like this!

Ok don't say I didn't try to help out.  These are fab ideas that would make anyone's day, wife, mom, sister, grandma, aunt, girlfriend, co-worker, secret admirer, stalker (well it may piss your stalker off but you get my point).
Hurry up you've got 5 days left!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Laces OUT!

In honor of the Super Bowl I whipped up some goodies.  Nothing too fancy but I had an idea to make these little guys and look how cute they turned out!  I made chocolate fudge cupcakes and snickerdoodle cupcakes.

I used the "grass tip" with green buttercream for the grass, mini pretzels for the field goal posts, and Milk Duds for the footballs (painted the laces with white gel icing). I made little toppers with the Green Bay and Steelers logos.

I had the itch to make a cake too so I made a 3 layered cinnamon buttercream cake.  I dusted the top with cinnamon sugar and made the football out of gum paste.  Not sure why I used yellow icing, it was the first color I grabbed.

Congrats to the Green Bay Packers! (glad football is over, I'm not a fan lol) 

Friday, February 4, 2011

Makin' Whoopie

The other night I wanted to make something quick and different.  For Christmas I was given some yummy baking goods and I wanted to put some to use.  One of the fab gifts I received was a kit that included a Whoopie Pie kit!  Now, I've never made Whoopie Pie so I was looking forward to this new adventure (oh that and sweet tooF kept dropping hints about me makin' them).

I threw the damn box away so I don't remember the brand of the kit (and yes it was a kit. Sometimes I take the quick and dirty route, a box kit "GASP" I know).

Needless to say they came out yummy!

I used a regular baking sheet to get them started:

bake for approx 7 minutes and done!

while cooling, I whipped up the filling which is a typical buttercream frosting
and all done!!

The ingredients were easy, just add water, oil, butter, and eggs to the batter mix.  Then milk and powdered sugar to the frosting mix.

If you're ever in the mood to make whoopie, and who isn't right?!, these puppies took a total of 15-20 minutes to make! Easy peasy. Oh and apparently sweet tooF liked them as he ate THREE in a row.  I promise you folks, he does not weight 300lbs.

Cake Pops Super Bowl Style

The Super Bowl is this weekend and I've been itching to make some goodies.  While doing some research I ran across these little guys, how freakin' adorable!!!

Cute right?  I'm thinking maybe these or football cupcakes. Something easy peasy. We'll see! ...and of course I'll post pics :)

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Holy Cannoli!

If there's one dessert that sweet tooF absolutely loves it's the cannoli.  Cannoli are Sicilian pastry desserts, tube-shaped shells of fried pastry dough filled with sweet creamy filling usually containing ricotta cheese and chopped succade.  YUM!!!  Check out these beauties:

Serious sugar coma (ha!)  I'd love to make my own one day so I'm on the hunt for a good recipe.  If you have one please share!!! sweet tooF will thank you!  :)
As they said in The Godfather "Leave the Gun, Take the Cannoli"

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Christmas ParTAY!

Sweet tooF and I had an early Christmas Party (in fact it was an ugly sweater christmas party haha) and it was a blast!

We had yummy food and for dessert, I made Red Velvet Cuppies with Cream Cheese frosting. Check out the toppers I made too! So cute :)  I called them "Red Stocking Cupcakes"

I also made strawberry jello shots! Tis the season to be merry, VERY merry haha!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Cookie Monster Attacks!

Oh my, where has the time gone!! It's almost the end of the year. So much food, so many treats (and my ass keeps getting bigger I'm sure) ah yes 'tis the season to PIG OUT.

AnyHOO, I recently made a couple of cakes for my friend's little boy's 2nd birthday.  Her bday party theme was Cookie Monster!  I was so excited to make these cakes. I had tons of ideas but wanted to make something really cute (and yummy of course).  I was only going to make the little birthday boy a cake but then figured I'd make something for the adults (the kids were getting cupcakes).

After lots of brainstorming, I found a 3D Cookie Monster that was adorable! But then thought, crap, can I make that? It looks really hard.  Well, I went for it, and let me say I was SO pleased with my little guy.

This first cake is a 2 tiered cake covered in fondant.  Top portion was chocolate and bottom was carrot (it was super moist!)  All the cutouts are fondant and Cookie Monster's eyes are marshmallows.  This was a HEAVY cake.

Now comes my little guy, Cookie Monster! First let me tell you that this puppy took FOREVER to pipe ( I had to take several breaks as my hand cramped up). I used the "grass" tip and colored the buttercream Wilton's Royal Blue.  It took a TON of icing color, but soon I realized this stuff darkens over time (I made him the night before the party) so the next day his "fur" color was PERFECT!  His eyes are fondant (held by toothpicks) and his mouth was colored in with black icing.  He's made out of chocolate pound cake (you need to use a dense cake when making 3D cakes).  I used Wilton's Cuddly Bear pan to shape the body. I then cut off the ears and shaped the mouth.  I also added more cake for the arms/hands to make them stand out more.  I stuck and cookie in his hand and VOILA!  Here's my monster:

I'm so happy with how my 3D Cookie Monster came out. Best part, they were both yummy cakes and I received a lot of compliments on them.

Here's a shot of the birthday table with all the goodies!!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Gobble! Gobble!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Hope you had a fabulous turkey day and you stuffed your bellies to no end (I know I did). What am I thankful for? Stretchy pants!!  This year my brother hosted Thanksgiving so yay! no cooking for me! (but boooo no turkey samiches leftover style). 

Tons of food was cooked, it was all so yummy!! Of course I baked some goodies and brought them along to the par-tay.

I made Pumpkin Spice cupcakes with a NEW Cream Cheese frosting recipe (it turned out GREAT)
and also made Pumpkin Mini Loafs.  Check it out!

Sister in law made homemade pumpkin pie! What's Turkey day without it :)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

My Friend Is Awesome

So I mentioned the awesome 36 cupcake carrier that is a must have here and how I was so bummed when I went back to TJ Maxx to buy it and it was GONE. 
This morning I come into to work and LOOK what was sitting on my chair!!!

SCORE!!!! After telling my friend my sob story about my hunt for this bad boy, she found one at her local store. Best part? It was ONLY 19.99 (reg retail between $30-$35!). AND it's such a beautiful iridescent sherbert color (the pic looks faded and does not do the color justice!)

I want to hug it, I love it! haha. Now this just makes me want to bake 3 dozen cuppies.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Cupcakes To Go

Tired of spending precious time decorating cupcakes only to have them RUINED during transport?
How about making a few dozen for a party/event and NOT having anywhere safe to place them?

Well the cupcake gods have answered!
Check this baby out!

Yes, that's right folks it's a cupcake carrier, but not just any cupcake carrier....it holds 36!! (and not just 36 regular cupcakes,  but FROSTED cuppies!)

And now for a sad story. When I saw this beauty I thought, awesome, this will come in handy one day.  So the other day I was in TJ Maxx and saw this there! But guess what, I didn't buy it.  First let me stop and say I'm frugal (no not cheap, FRUGAL) so I had to justify buying it (especially since I already had a cute cupcake stand in my hand) and then realized I didn't really need it right then and there.  So I didn't get it.  Fast forward one week, I'm baking pumpkin cupcakes for a holiday party and thought, HEY! I can use that carrier!  I go back to TJ Maxx and IT WAS GONE.
So so so sad.  I was bummed and learned, if you see something, BUY IT.

Anyway, you can find this carrier on Amazon for about $35 (I'm sure it was way cheaper at TJ Maxx, damn!)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Big Cupcake Alert!

This was my first attempt at a giant cupcake and had no idea how it would turn out.  Needless to say I'm not over the moon with how it turned out but as with everything I'm sure with some practice they'll turn out better.  

First I must say the directions said to make 2 batches of cake mix...WRONG. I made two and had enough for 24 cupcakes with the leftover batter, so uhm no, 2 batches was way too much.  Then it said to bake for about 35-45 mins. Try again, it took 65. yeah 65. 

Anyway, I decided on red velvet since I know that's one of my friend's favs (it was for her birthday). 

Here's they are, all filled and ready to go! 

All done! My kitchen smelled wonnnnnnnderful

While the cupcakes cooled, I whipped up a batch of buttercream.

All cooled, I  had to level out each piece so they would fit nicely on top of each other then added a layer of  buttercream on the bottom piece

Placed the top on and ready to frost!

 All done!!  I used large "sprinkles" and edible pearls.

Ok so here's the scoop.  It wasn't that easy.  First of all, I let it cool almost an hour before removing it from the mold and guess what happened? The top part broke.  Good thing it was going to be covered by icing so you couldn't tell.  Next, I wanted to use the Wilton tip #22 and make little stars but I knew the buttercream wouldn't be firm enough so then my next idea was use the same tip but just make a huge swirl all the way around....nope, I started to and then it began to droop.  Damn.  I had no choice but to smooth it out with an angled spatula.  So all in all, it turned out "ok" but I'd love to try it again for a better result.   It's so big!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Cupcake Magnified

I'll be taking a friend out for her birthday this week and there is nothing more she would love than a GIANT cupcake.
The hardest part? trying to figure out how to decorate it! The possibilities are endless and it's not like I make these all the time so I want to be sure it's cute.

I'll be gettin' my research on and start on this puppy tomorrow. I hope she likes it! (she better or I'll smash it in her face)
I'll be sure to post pics!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Mini Pumpkin Loafs

As mentioned in my last post, I picked up the lovely little mini loaf pan from Sur La Table. I was so excited to use it (I've wanted this little sucker for some time now). 

I used a recipe for pumpkin bread that was recommended to me and all I have to say is THANK YOU!!! This is by far the best pumpkin bread recipe I've had. Now let me tell you, there is nothing fancy about this recipe, nothing in it that most others don't have, but for some reason this recipe was extra moist and extremely flavorful - the pan helped too I'm sure.  The recipe calls for chopped walnuts, but sweet tooF doesn't like walnuts so I made it w/out. 

Here is the recipe:
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 cup olive oil
2 eggs beaten
1/4 cup water
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Bake at 350.  This recipe makes 1 loaf baked at 50-60 mins (you could easily double for more) and if you're using the mini loaf pan like I did, it was exactly enough for 8 mini loafs baked at 25-30 mins. 
**For detailed recipe email me TreatsBySweetB@gmail.com **

Here it is ready to for some oven lovin'
 All done! So golden brown :)

These were so deeeeelish!!! I highly recommend this recipe. It will definitely warm anyone's tummy.  The pan is a plus, makes them bite size! Ok, more like 4 bites size :)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Hooray for New Tools!

So I've mentioned before that I absolutely LOVE LOVE the store Sur La Table. Sweet tooF purchased some AWESOME pans for me and they are FABULOUS! Now I want one in every size, shape, you name it. If they sell it, I want it. In the words of that spoiled brat Veruca Salt from one of the BEST. MOVIES. EVER. Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (the original, not the lame Johnny Depp one)  "I want it now!"
On my recent visit, I spotted this bad boy:

Awesome you say? Why yes, it is. It's an 8 count Mini Loaf Pan, perrrrfect for the holidays. This will make the cutest little pumpkin bread loafs. Perfect gift for a  friend, co-worker (the actual loaf of bread, not the pan, however, the pan kicks ass so it really would be a great gift too).  Every year we make pumpkin bread in a regular loaf pan and it takes forever to eat, it's like an never ending loaf, but with these, they're mini (and everything mini is cute right?) so we can freeze a few while eating the others!

I'm heading over today to pick this little guy up AND I just heard they are having a Friends and Family Event 20% off that ends TODAY.  I'm so there. ( oh and sweet tooF, I promise not to max out the credit card hehee...)