Thursday, August 27, 2009

Cupcake Hero, Banana - Hummingbird Cupcakes

First entry to cupcake hero is the hummingbird cupcake...I was asked "Um, if your in the mood to make cupcakes on Thursday, it's my birthday." his favorite, hummingbird of how could I not combine the Cupcake Hero challenge with his request?? It would be a sin.

My recipe is from the Elinor Klivans cookbook, "Cupcakes". I topped it off with my cream cheese buttercream and a glazed pecan. Once again, I did not eat one as I am still on a diet. My daughter has been my official taste tester today. I think she's starting to resent me......ANYWAYS, here is the recipe....try it and enjoy it for me.

Hummingbird Cupcakes
by Elinor Klivans

2 1/2 cup AP flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
3 eggs
2 cups sugar
1 cup canola oil
2 tsp vanilla
8 0z sour cream
1 cup mashed bananas
1 cup drained crushed pineapple
1 cup chopped pecans

Pre heat oven to 350 degrees, line cupcake tin - I got 28 out of this recipe

Sift flour, b powder, b soda, salt and cinnamon together into bowl and set aside.

In mixer on medium beat eggs and sugar til light and fluffy, approx 2 minutes. on low mix in oil and vanilla, then mix in sourcream until just incorporated. Stir in dry mixture until incorporated (I bump the mixer up to med for 12 seconds, a trick I learned from Warren Brown's cookbook). Then fold in banana, pineapple and pecans.

fill tins 2/3 full, bake 20-23 minutes.

Cream Cheese Buttercream
by me, mind you this is enough to frost all of these cupcakes, plus the banana butterscotch cupcakes.

3 sticks unsalted butter
1 stick salted butter
12 oz cream cheese
12 - 14 cups powdered sugar (sifted) (just under 2 - 2 # bags)
1 Tbsp vanilla
pinch salt
1/4 -1/2 cup cream (use milk, half and half, cream whatever you have)

cream together butter and cream cheese until light and fluffy, add sugar (Okay, I have a covered mixer, so I can add it all at once with no mess, but if you don't add it gradually or youll never see the end of your powdered sugar dust ball of a house). Add in vanilla salt and cream and beat until light and fluffy.
Now, you are gonna wanna play with the amount of powdered sugar and cream. the more cream you add, the less stiff the frosting will be. I like it to be stiff and crust for me, so I add more sugar and less cream. if you like it on the creamier side, then add less sugar and more cream....get the picture? It's all up to you.
I topped it off with a glazed normally, I make my my blog, you'll see the recipe....but today, I used a store bought one. shame.

Happy Birthday Lamia, and Good Luck Kate!

White chocolate cream cheese pound cake with strawberry filling and a slightly lemon buttercream. Simply decorated with fondant ribbon roses......oh, how I would love to eat them, but alas I am on a diet. (I did not say that with a smile on my face....a diet, that's going on and on with not very good results, I might add....but I persevere for the sake of vanity.)

Anyways, Lamia and Kate are coworker's....hope they like the cakes...
The fondant roses are made out of a new recipe that I found on cake central, it's called Michelle Foster Fondant. it is delicious.
Michele Foster's Fondant

Serves/Yields: 3 1/2 lbs.
1/2 cup cream
2 Tbsp. unflavored gelatin
1 cup corn syrup
2Tbsp. butter
2Tbsp. glycerin
2 tsp. clear vanilla
dash salt Approximately
3 1/2 lbs. powdered sugar

1. Place milk in 2 cup measuring cup, add gelatin, stir to combine.
2. Let gelatin "bloom" or become firm, usually less than 5 minutes.
3. Place mixture in microwave and heat for 1 minute on high. Stir. If gelatin does not become liquid, microwave in 15 second intervals until the gelatin is melted. Stir between heating cycles. 4. Put corn syrup, butter, glycerin, vanilla, and salt in large measuring cup, add this mixture to the melted gelatin. Stir.
5. Microwave mixture for 2 minutes on high setting. Butter should be almost melted. Stir, set aside to cool to LUKE WARM.
6. Add 2 lbs. of powdered sugar to large mixing bowl. A Kitchen Aid mixer works best for this. Do not use a hand mixer.
7. Strain LUKE WARM mixture into the powdered sugar; mix by hand until just blended. Straining removes any lumps that did not dissolve during the cooking process.
8. Place the bowl on the mixer, add several cups of powdered sugar, and mix very slowly with the dough hook.
9. Continue to add powdered sugar, about a cup at a time, until fondant forms a soft ball. It should not slide down the dough hook and there may be some powdered sugar left in the bottom of the bowl. This is normal. Keeping the mixer covered with a damp dish towel will prevent powdered sugar from coating the kitchen.
10. While the mixer is running prepare a surface for kneading. You will need some powdered sugar and a non-stick surface. Also have plastic wrap prepared with a think coat of cooking oil. Do not use spray, this can cause the fondant to crust. 11. When fondant is ready, remove from the bowl and knead in a small amount of powdered sugar until the fondant is smooth. It will still be slightly soft. 1
2. Wrap in oil coated plastic wrap; wrap again, and then place in an air tight container such as a zipper bag or plastic tub.
13. Allow fondant to rest at least 6 hours or over night. 14. Knead only the amount required until smooth before rolling out to cover cake or board.
CHOCOLATE - add 6 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate chips to the corn syrup. Follow the recipe as normal. Add brown food coloring to make it darker.
WHITE CHOCOLATE- add 6 ounces of white chocolate chips to the corn syrup. Follow the recipe as normal.
DAIRY-FREE FONDANT - Replace equal amounts of water, non-dairy creamer, fruit juice, or other liquid for the cream. Replace the butter with equal amounts of shortening. This also works for unflavored fondant when only covering cake dummies.
GENERAL INFORMATION *If the fondant is too soft or stretchy, knead in additional powdered sugar in small amounts until fondant is of the consistency of play dough. *If the fondant is too stiff knead in small amounts of glycerin until softened. This is easier by working in small batches and then blending the batches together. Keep any unused fondant covered. *Fondant can be stored at room temperature for at least a month. For longer periods, place well wrapped fondant in the freezer. Allow fondant to warm slowly to room temperature before using, usually over night. DO NOT THAW IN THE MICROWAVE. *The sugar and cooking process preserves the dairy ingredients, so there is no worry of spoilage. *Chocolate can be a little stiff, more glycerin might be needed. If you add brown food coloring remember that it has glycerin in it (gel colors) and will soften the fondant. *Please remember that many things can affect the consistency of the fondant. This includes temperature, humidity, temperature of the mixture when added to the powdered sugar, any flavorings that are added, and even the temperature of your own hands. THE FIRST 5 INGREDIENTS MUST BE MEASURED ACCURATELY. *Color can be added during the cooking stage or the mixing stage. Adding color after the fondant has rested is much more difficult, but it can still be done. *This recipe is naturally off-white. Add white food color for whiter fondant. Gel color will change the consistency. Variations of this recipe can be found in the cook book "The Sugar Fix, the recipes and rantings of an obsessive-compulsive cook". Go to to order. Please leave a message to the seller if you would like for it to be signed. This is only available through Lick the Spoon Productions.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Princess First Birthday Cupcakes and Smash Cake

For a co worker's daughter. She wanted lemon and chocolate cupcakes plus a smash cake.

I made lemon cupcakes with strawberry frosting, and also a lemon-strawberry swirl frosting.

I also made chocolate cupcakes. some have strawberry filling with a whipped milk chocolate ganache buttercream, and others have the chocolate ganache filling with a strawberry buttercream.

They are decorated with tiara's, roses and wands made out of candy clay. And also some butterflies that are just melted chocolate and poured into molds.

The smash cake is vanilla with strawberry filling and lemon buttercream. The tiara is made out of candy clay. I intended to put a wand on top, but the humidity has been playing a number on my decorations, so they havent been stiffening up as well. The white sticks are just in place to make sure the tiara doesn't fall over during transport.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Happy Birthday Adelin!

Adelin is 2, mom said she loves Pooh, gardening and she's a little I put it all together and this is what I came up with.

I had made a fondant tiara (see previous post) that broke...because I only made one....I knew all along, make another...but....Anyhow, I had found this tiara at walmart...pretty nice, cuz it had a butterfly on it and lights it was all good.

The cake is a 3 layer vanilla with a fresh strawberry buttercream filling, and vanilla buttercream icing.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Sugar-Loving Booger Butt

Courtesy of my coworker Tim Bougie who is an amazing photographer. He came over today and took pictures of the cake and cupcakes. See more of his pics he took today and others at

Happy Birthday Taylor!

My daughter's cake, her design and choice of flavors.

The bottom tier is Brown sugar praline with cream cheese frosting...(note to cream cheese frosting recipe isn't sturdy enough to support a 12 inch pound cake on top, the filling started bulging out and made the cake look sooo bad on the bottom)

The next tier is a mojito cake with a strawberry filling....soooo yummy.

Next is a chocolate cake with my Reeses Pb cup ganache...always a hit.

The top is styrofoam to support the wires.

I also made cupcakes with the leftover batter and Banoffe cupcakes with homemade caramel, caramel sauce and toffee to top it off.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Inside Chocolate Chip cake

Pretty yummy...especially the filling.

I used the recipe for Marshmallow Fondant from "The Frosted Cake and Cookie", and added the recommended 2 Tbsp of Gum Paste Mix which I normally don't do....Lets see if this tiara holds up.
I bought the sugarpaste gun also and used that to pipe out the fondant to get evenness throughout....and finished it off with some sugar pearls, I think the tiara turned out pretty cute, right now it's drying on a bowl, I'll show you it again when it's on top of a cake I'm doing.

Royal Icing Brushed Embroidery

Practicing some more....I did go overboard with the design a little, I envisioned it a little more simple, but I continued with the flowers for practice. I think it's pretty, and am excited to do more of it. This chocolate fondant was difficult to roll out, so ended up being pretty thick....the recipe is in the previous post...I think the trick to this is to not frigerate it and using it either the day you make it or soon's super yummy.

The cake is a chocolate chip pound cake (from Whimsical Bakehouse), filled with a whipped milk chocolate ganache (that I didn't make enough of...note to self, half recipe is not enough for a 3 layer cake) so is filled scantly. I crumb coated the cake with a poured ganache. I'll post a pic after we cut into it for dinner (I've been on a diet for 3 weeks, tonight is a treat meal...can't wait).

Chocolate Marshmallow Fondant

Chocolate Marshmallow Fondant
(a mix of several recipes I've found on the internet)

16 oz mini marshmallows
1/2-3/4 cup chocolate chips (I used semi sweet)
2 Tbsp water
3 - 7 cups sifted powdered sugar
1/2 - 1 cup sifted cocoa (depending on how dark you want your fondant)

Grease two bowls with crisco, one for melting marshmallows, another bigger one for the sugar and cocoa.

sift cocoa into larger greased bowl, then add sifted powdered sugar to equal 4 cups total. have the rest of your sugar sifted and ready to go.

Melt marshmallows, chocolate and water in greased bowl in microwave in 30 second intervals until melted. stirring often with greased rubber spatula or wooden spoon.

pour melted mixture into bowl with cocoa and sugar, mix until you start to form a ball. transfer mixture onto well greased counter top and start kneading it together. MAKE SURE YOUR HANDS ARE WELL GREASED, THIS IS MESSY. If your mixture is sticking to counter, start adding more powdered sugar to counter top and incorporate it into mixture.

I use a different amount of sugar each time, it depends on the heat and humidity of the stop adding sugar when your fondant is smooth, pliable and not sticky.....don't let it get too dry, chocolate fondant has a habit of doing so.....I find I use way less sugar then I do with regular marshmallow fondant.

Double wrap in saran wrap, and let rest for at least 12 hours.