Monday, February 20, 2012

Baby Blocks

This cake was made for a baby shower put on by my friend Amiee of Devoted to Decorating. Aimee is fabulous... I cannot gush about her enough! I got a glimpse of the baby shower set up when delivering the cake and everything looked great!!

I really love the challenge of a stacked cake. Hours {and I mean hours} of thought, planning and preparation happen before the first layer is even in the oven. And, even the best laid plans generally have me thinking on my toes in the eleventh hour! I think all cake decorators must like the thrill and pressure of getting that cake to its destination safely and in one piece!!

Cute little baby monkey!

The blocks were three different flavours... a great idea for stacked cakes to appeal to all guests! They were red velvet with cream cheese icing, chocolate chip with buttercream icing and vanilla with lemon icing.

Thanks again to Aimee for leting me be a part of your event!


Tuesday, February 14, 2012

I {Heart} You!

Happy Valentine's Day!

Just a quick post tonight of some of my favourite Valentine's Day goodies this year...

In keeping with my new cookie obsession I made a lot of hearts this year. I also learned a **very important** lesson... if your royal icing doesn't seem to be stiffening up in your mixer {and yes, I let it mix for a LONG time!} do not, and I repeat do not, add more meringue powder after the fact!! I have made royal icing many times and have never had this problem. However, on the particular night I decided to ice my cookies I also decided to try a new recipe. Sometimes this works in my favour, other times, not so much. This time, not so much!

Once upon a time I read that if you need to add meringue powder to royal icing after the icing is already mixed, dissolve it in water first then add. I tried, no luck. As you will see below you get tiny little dots in your icing. Not the flawless finish I was hoping for. If {or when} this happens again I will just toss and start fresh, as much as it pains me to waste perfectly good-ish icing!

These cookies were donated to the my-dad-wants-cookies-to-take-to-work cause so all was not lost. And, don't worry, I had a few taste testers make sure they were edible first :)

I used Duff's Cake Graffiti spray in silver for the first time on these cookies and I was really impressed with the results. It took a few tries to get a feel for it but now I am addicted! I can't wait to "spray paint" my next set of cookies!!

pretty in pink...

... and some sparkly minis...

I hope everyone had a great Valentine's Day filled with love, chocolate {and maybe a glass of wine!}!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Everyone Loves a Monogram Cookie

I love a monogram cookie. Really, I love a monogram anything, period.

I especially love a monogram cookie with a fun letter! It's probably the teacher in me but some letters are more exciting than others. Take, for example, "L". Circa - Sex and the City I decided I wanted a Carrie-esque necklace with a pretty L on it... you know, the loopy, curly, handwritten kind of L. The problem with L though is that there are necklaces out there with the boring, right angle, uppercase printing kind of L. Not nearly as fun. So maybe it is actually the font that makes a letter interesting - either way a cookie with a monogram is always a good idea!

Waaayyy back in the Fall my cousin, Heather, and her husband, Ryan, welcomed their second bundle of joy, sweet little Margeaux, to their clan. I finally got the chance to meet baby M over the winter break and, of course, had to take some goodies with me! M is definitely a "fun" letter... couldn't resist a little zebra print either!

Not to be left out of any cookie situation big brother Hudson also got his very own polka-dotted H's!

Both brother and baby are adorable! It was great to see the family and I can't wait for summer so we have an excuse to go for ice cream... ha!

Piping letters is actually a lot easier than you would think. For tips and tricks click {HERE}. Bridget does a really great job of pointing you in the right direction!


Friday, February 3, 2012

A Little Inspiration!

Have you ever wondered about those beautifully decorated sugar cookies that look too good to eat...

Well... I have! How the heck do they make them?!?! Mostly I wondered about the secret icing recipe. How does it cover the cookie in a smooth, shiny layer?!

So, my interest peaked, I began my quest to find the perfect cookie icing, I came across this recipe. While delicious and shiny it just didn't make the cut in the decorating department. Perfect for a quick, simple, one colour kind of job. But not quite there.

Next I tried {insert well-known, widely available baking brand name here} color flow icing. I tried it and I tried it again. Much better for decorating than my first-attempt icing but I found that it didn't always pipe well - it wouldn't "stick" to the cookie, there were bubbles in my lines and it wouldn't always flow nicely from the bag. Who knows, maybe I was over mixing it or under mixing it or adding too much water or not enough water. What I did know for sure though was that it didn't taste great. And if something isn't absolutely delicious then it isn't right for me! So my search continued...

...and then I came across Bake at 350. I have to admit that I resisted royal icing on cookies forever. As far as I was concerned royal icing was used to "glue" gingerbread houses together and tasted really, really bad. But I saw what Bridget at was doing with it {see butterflies above} and I was intrigued. I cautiously decided to give it a whirl!

The very first time I tried her royal icing recipe I fell in love with cookie decorating... became obsessed really! The icing was perfect for piping, forgave me for not thinning it enough for flooding and tasted fantastic! I had to try to make every single cookie I saw on the website. Partially because I wanted to know if I could do it, partially because I wanted to be just as great as Bridget {who, by the way, is amazing!}. I also had Christmas on my side... the perfect excuse to start my cookie decorating supplies collection...hehe! 

My first attempts {Bake at 350 inspired}...

...and Olive inspired too!

The more cookies I decorate the more obsessed I get. I want to turn everything into a cookie! Thank you Bridget for inspiring me to try something new!!

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