"if you wish to be glamorous, become a cake baker" -The Joy of Cooking

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Baptism Cake

This is the most special cake I have ever made.  I made this for my sweet little niece for her Baptism.




Top View




Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Lattice top pies...mystery solved!

Ohhhhhhhhh....so that's how you do it!

I'm so glad I came across this pic on pinterest 

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Cinnamon Roll Love

Lately I can't get enough of the Pioneer Woman, Ree Drummond.  I love her blog. I love her show and I LOVE her recipe for cinnamon rolls.  I was flipping through her first cookbook The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from an Accidental Country Girl, and her "most treasured recipe" looked sooo good I just had to make them.
I've tried before to make cinnamon rolls from scratch and they always came out kind of hard and too bready so I was a little nervous that they wouldn't come out as dreamy as she said they were.  I followed her recipe exactly and found helpful tips on her blog as well.
They came out better than I could have hoped for and were dangerously addictive and pure heaven.
You have GOT to bake these...like right now.
Click here for the recipe.

Here is my dough all rolled out and ready


Spread with melted butter, sugar and cinnamon 


These are the rolls after they were left to rise again for about 20mins

in the oven.  the smell was amazing!!

Just out of the oven and bathed in gooey icing


so good :)

One of my favourite books right now!



Sunday, July 7, 2013

Summer Fresh Strawberries

While at a farmers market a few weeks ago I bought myself some lovely, fresh, sweet smelling Ontario strawberries.  They looked so pretty!!
 I couldn't wait to take them home and make something yummy with them.
I decided to make strawberry tarts.

I made things super easy for myself by buying frozen mini tart shells.  Before adding the filling you need to pre bake the shells for 10-12min at 350, then let them cool.

I used a large round tip and pastry bag to pipe the filling into the shells.  The filling for my strawberry tarts consisted of 1 medium container of mascarpone cheese at room temperature, 1/2 cup of sugar and 250ml of heavy whipping cream 

To make the filling add the sugar and vanilla to the heavy cream and beat until stiff peaks.  Then gently fold the cream into the mascarpone cheese until well combined

Pipe or spoon the filling into the cooled shells.


I quartered the strawberries and placed them on top the filling.  Then piped a dollop of whipped cream and finished the tarts off with tiny mint leaf


Thursday, June 27, 2013

The BIG 3-0...

Yesterday I turned 30...

how did this happen? I was just celebrating my 20th...*sigh*

Still a cake must be made and here it is.








I made the flowers using gumpaste and fondant.  The icing was vanilla buttercream


it was actually a great day: family, friends and chocolate cake :)


Thursday, June 20, 2013

The latest creations

Here are some pics of the cakes I have made recently

These are some gumpaste flowers I made recently for birthday cupcakes.  I tinted the gumpaste pink and used violet coloured luster dust and pink sugar pearls for the centres


I made vanilla bean cupcakes with vanilla bean buttercream. I used a wilton 1M tip for the icing swirl



So pretty :)


This is a vanilla cake I made for my brother's 35th birthday.  Everyone seems to love vanilla cake the best. 



These were cupcakes I made for my grandfather's 93rd birthday!
Click here for this amazing vanilla cake recipe that everyone LOVES!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Happy Easter !

Easter, very much like Christmas, is a time for baking and recreating traditions and customs observed at this time of year.  I love Easter because it truly is a time that the focus is totally on just being together with family and not having to rush around in crowded malls and spending too much money on gifts.  The weather is finally getting a little warmer and the promise of spring is in the air.  The daylight lasts longer than 4pm and we finally feel that winter is behind us.

One of the Easter traditions in our home is to bake a rice pie.  It is a very traditional neapolitan pie made at this time of year that symbolizes rebirth and represents both the resurrection of Christ and the arrival of spring.  In the recipe that I have they use an ingredient called "grano cotto" which is a pre-cooked wheat.  We use rice instead, because that is how my grandparents made it.  Also, this pie is a lot sweeter than the one my grandparents used to make so you may want to reduce the sugar if you want a less sweeter version.      



Neapolitan Easter Pie

Filling
300g rice or grano cotto
150ml milk
1 wide strip lemon rind
10g unsalted butter
350g firm fresh ricotta
300g sugar
4 eggs
1tsp vanilla extract
Pastry
335g flour
135g sugar
135 cold unsalted butter
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract




  •  For the pastry: process flour, sugar and butter in a food processor until mixture resembles coarse bread crumbs.  Add eggs and vanilla and process until dough just comes together.  Form pastry into a disc and wrap in plastic.  Refrigerate for 2 hours
  • Place rice, milk, lemon rind, butter and pinch of salt in a saucepan and stir frequently over medium heat for 10min or until thick and creamy.  Remove from heat, cool and then refrigerate until cold
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer add ricotta and sugar and beat until smooth and creamy with no lumps.  Stir in eggs, vanilla and rice mixture until well combined
  • Roll out pastry and line a 9" pie plate.  Pour in rice filling and cut strips from extra pastry and line the top of the pie
  • bake at 350 for 35-40min
  • Cool in pan and refrigerate for 1hour before serving
  • Dust the top with icing sugar if desired
Serves 8-10 

I also made some vanilla bean sugar cookies.  I bought these adorable copper cutters from Williams-Sonoma.  The recipe is also from their website.








 Vanilla Bean Sugar Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 
  • 1/2 tsp. salt 
  • 12 Tbs. (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature 
  • 1 cup sugar 
  • 1 egg 
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract 

Directions:

Have all the ingredients at room temperature. Over a small bowl, sift together the flour and salt. Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat the butter on high speed until creamy, about 2 minutes. Reduce the speed to medium, slowly add the sugar and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the egg and vanilla and beat for 1 minute, stopping the mixer once to scrape down the sides of the bowl.

Stop the mixer and add half of the flour mixture. Beat on low speed until most of the flour has been absorbed, about 1 minute. Add the remaining flour and continue beating until all of the flour has been absorbed and the dough starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl, 2 to 3 minutes.

Turn the dough out onto a work surface and divide into 2 equal balls. Shape each into a disk and wrap separately in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 2 days.

Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let stand for 10 minutes. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough 3/16 to 1/4 inch thick.

Preheat an oven to 350°F. Line several baking sheets with parchment paper.

 Cut out the desired shapes. If the dough sticks to the cutter, dip the cutter into flour before cutting out more shapes. Using a small offset spatula, transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheets, spacing the cookies about 1 inch apart. Reroll the scraps and cut out more cookies. Decorate as desired with the decorating tools.

Bake the cookies until golden brown around the edges, 7 to 10 minutes for smaller shapes, 12 to 16 minutes for larger shapes. If baking more than one sheet at a time, rotate the baking sheets from top to bottom and 180 degrees halfway through baking.

Transfer the baking sheets to wire racks and let cool for 5 minutes, then transfer the cookies to the racks and let cool completely. Store the cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. Makes about 20 cookies.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Bake it Like you Mean it

Just got my copy of Gesine Bullock Prado's new book, Bake it Like you Mean it

It is a really beautiful book and a must if you love to bake.



I can't wait to bake something