Wednesday, 28 December 2011

The best gingerbread cookies and Happy holiday!




Happy holiday folks! I'm sorry I have been away from the blog for a while. Life has been super busy as I have been getting more and more cake orders that I had to turned down some of them. I felt so bad but since I am only doing this part time..I have to put my kids first and caking second :)

However I am now thinking seriously to turn this into a full time business...Yes! I'm going to take that risk and jump into caking business! Hopefully this will happen some times next year! (finger-crossed!)




Now let's talk about baking..I made these super cute and super delicious gingerbread biscuits for my friends and family this Christmas. I thought that would be a lovely gift for them :)

This recipe is great for kids and big kids..and they are also perfect for this holiday time. I tried out few gingerbread cookies recipes and I thought this is the best!
Most gingerbread cookies that I tried tasted either too gingery or too sweet..and sometimes they got soggy within few days.
This recipe however stay crisps longer and they taste as what gingerbread cookies should be..perfectly balance of ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg. Yummo!
 



They are great for kids to cut into different shapes and decorate with royal icing. You can also use this recipe to make gingerbread houses. Just make sure you don't roll them too thinly or they will become quite fragile after baking.

This recipe makes about 48 cookies if you use big cookie cutter. If you use smaller cookie cutters, you will get around 80 cookies.

Gingerbread cookies
adapted from Bourke Street Bakery book, by Paul Allam & David Mcguinness.

Ingredients:
1.125 kg plain flour
1tsp salt
1tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tbs ground ginger
2tsp ground cinnamon
2tsp ground nutmeg
400g unsalted butter
400g soft brown sugar
320g golden syrup or honey
1 egg
4 egg yolks


Method:
- Preheat the oven to 170C (325F/Gas 3)
- Sift flour, salt, baking soda, and spices together into a large bowl.
- Put the butter, sugar and golden syrup in a large bowl and mix with hand-held electric beaters on medium speed until pale and creamy.
- Add the egg and egg yolks in a slow stream and mix until well combined.
- Add the dry ingredients, in three batches, until thoroughly mixed through.
- Divide the dough into four even-sized portion and flatten each portion into a disc. Cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 20 min, or for up to 3 days.
- Remove from the refrigerator and allow the dough to soften slightly.
- Roll out each disc between two sheets of baking paper until about 3mm (1/8inch) thick.
- Cut into the desired shapes using cookie cutters or a knife. Re-roll to make use of all the dough.
- Place the cookies on baking trays lined with baking paper and bake, in batches, for 15-20min, or slightly puff and golden. Allow to cool on the tray.


Royal Icing:
250g icing sugar
1 egg white
1/2 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

Method:
- Sift icing sugar through a fine sieve.
- Place the egg white in a bowl and add 1 tbs of the icing sugar. Using a wooden spoon, beat to form a smooth paste, then keep adding the sugar, 1 tbs at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Stir in the lemon juice - you should be able to squeeze the mixture through a piping/icing bag. The icing can be divided into smaller batches and a few drop of colouring can be added if required.

The cookies can be eaten when icing hardens, or stored in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

Wishing you a sweet Christmas 2011 and a sweeter New Year 2012!

Monday, 14 November 2011

Romantic rose mini cakes



Happy Tuesday all! I just realised that it has been nearly 2 weeks that I have been postponing this post...how terrible I know. The last few weeks I have been busy with family, birthday parties, planning a birthday party for my son, a baby shower..and also being sick (I'm still recovering from it).
Even this coming weekend I have 2 birthday cakes to make and 2 birthday party to attend.
busy busy busy but it is all good!




So yes I made these mini cakes 2 weeks ago and I love them! I love the colours too..so sweet and romantic. The white rose on the yellow cake actually had a soft pink dust on the petals.
It's a shame that the pink colour is not really visible in the pic.

Anyway, thanks for stopping by and hope you all have a great week!

Happy baking!

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

I smurf this cake!


Oh I just love love love making cakes! Last week I had the opportunity to make a smurf theme cake for a special girl who loves brainy smurf and this is what I made for her.
I was told that she is a tomboy so I knew right away that pink or purple cake would not suit her.
I thought a green cake with small daisy flowers would definitely suit her. Something that is cute and still has a girly feel to it without being too girly...And this is a finished cake!


How cute are these smurfs! I had so much fun making this cake! loved everything about it!




I so smurf this cake!

Happy baking and stay inspired!

Sunday, 30 October 2011

My birthday cake - Sugar free pink rainbow cake!



This pretty little cake is my birthday cake that I made for myself last week. It's a sugar free raspberry infused rainbow cake with cointreau cream. For the design I wanted something simple but with a little bit of surprise inside and with the cake..I wanted to make the best, the yummiest and the prettiest sugar free cake in the world. It was something that I've been thinking about a lot and being diabetic myself..I was so excited about this project.

So I planned to make a pink rainbow cake and I also wanted to go all natural...instead of using colouring, I made a home made natural colouring using raspberries.
It wasn't hard to make..actually I'm not sure if that's the right way to do it but it worked!
(see recipe below)

Unfortunately..my mission to find and make the best sugar free cake has failed. Luckily the cointreau cream was super yummy and the cake didn't fail to look pretty :D



Here is a glimpse of the pink rainbow cake inside. As you can see the layers look like like pancake and taste like pancake..but since this is my cake and I am the one eating it..then it's ok! lol!

Originally I wanted to post the recipe here but since the cake failed big time..I will only put the cointreau cream recipe here.



Home made pink colouring:
12-15 fresh or frozen raspberries.

Mash the juice from the fresh or thawed frozen raspberries using a sieve.
Use the juice to create blush pink colour in your icing or cake batter.


Sugar free Cointreau cream:
(enough to cover 6" to 7" cake, depending on the height and layers)

2 cups/500ml of cream
1/4 cup of Splenda
1/2 tsp of clear gelatine powder (this will help to stabilize the cream)
1Tbsp of Cointreau
1 orange or lemon, grated zest only

Method: Whisk together cream, splenda and gelatine. Beat until stiff peaks form. Fold through the orange/lemon zest and Cointreau.

Enjoy and I promise when I found the perfect and yummiest sugar free cake recipes..I will post them here!

Happy baking and stay inspired!

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Spring themed cake, mini cupcakes and cake pops



Howdy everybody! I am such in a good mood today!....This morning the weather is just beautiful, cloudy with a bit of sunshine...my kids are in their best behaviour...and also because today is my birthday! Yes today I am officially 33 years old! and yes I am making my own birthday cake. It sounds a little sad I know but I have been wanting to make a diabetic friendly birthday cake. 
It's a little project that I've been thinking a lot about it. So watch this space..I will post something soon!






Okay enough about me, let's talk about these scrumptious cakes. Last week was one of my busiest moments ever. A friend of mine asked me to make her 21st birthday cake and I was so excited about it. It was one of those "aaw" moments..I knew her since she was like 11 years old...the last time I saw her I think she was about 15 years old and I haven't seen her since. So when she contacted me and told me that she was turning 21, I just couldn't believe it. Has it been that long? my goodness..time sure flies!

Beside the cake, she also asked me to make four other dessert for her dessert table. After few discussion we decided to go with Oreo cake pops, red velvet mini cupcakes with vanilla cream cheese frosting, lemon tarts and blueberry cheesecake brownies.
Unfortunately, I didn't have time to take photos of the brownies and lemon tarts. They got pick up before I got a chance to take the shots!

The party theme was light yellow with dark purple. So I tried to incorporate those colours into the cake design and the rest of the dessert as well. I was quite happy with the final result..but as always there were few things that could be better. Oh well.. got to learn to accept what I could not change hehe

Have a great rest of the week all and...Happy birthday to me!

Happy baking!

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Princess Belle cake

 

Oh who doesn't love this princess? I love princess Belle! well..my number one princess is Cinderella but I also love Belle! She is not just beautiful but she is also intelligent and kind.
So when I was asked to make Princess Belle theme cake I was so excited!

With this cake design, I knew that I wanted to do something that very girly, princessy and also simple because I wanted princess Belle herself to shine. After all she is the star of the cake :)
And also thinking about her character as the cake topper...I didn't want to make her that look exactly like Belle in the movie. I wanted to do a cuter version of Belle and so I did :)
What do you think? Good I hope! ha ha

Again, Happy 5th birthday Caitlyn! Thanks for letting me made your cake!

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Mickey Mouse cake, Mad scientist cake and another Lighting McQueen cakes

Mickey Mouse theme cake

This super cute Mickey mouse cake if for a boy who turned 2 last week.
I love everything about this cake, I specially love the look of the Mickey mouse..( I was worried if Mickey would turn out not like Mickey but a mouse ha ha ha )

Mad scientist cake

I also had the opportunity to make this interesting cake, Mad Scientist theme cake. I had quite a few challenges in making this cake. Usually I would make the top part using RKT (rice krispies treat), however my friend who ordered the cake wanted to have it all in cake and I was braved enough to make it out of cake.

Everything went well until when I started to stack the cake together. 5 min after I stacked the cakes up...I was horrified to see a crack on the back side of the cake!
and yup..I have forgotten one crucial part...cake supports! I didn't put any cake supports! How on earth would I forget about that..I just don't know. Anyway cut the story short, I managed to fix it..pheew thank God! Lesson learned and I will not forget about putting any support ever again! haha


Lighting McQueen cake

Lastly, I made another Lighting McQueen car cake for a boy name Joshua, who also turned 3 last week.

That's all from me this week...gotta go back  to my kitchen and make more cakes :)
I will update with more cakes and stories soon!
Have a great long weekend to all New Zealanders!

Monday, 26 September 2011

Magical pink fairy cake




Yes last week I came back from my 3 weeks holiday..I was a little sad knowing that holiday is now over and I had to be back to reality...work, laundry, cook, house chores here I come! 
On the week that I was back from my holiday, I was crazy enough to take a cake order (just because the order was for a fairy theme cake and I love making fairies..how could I resist lol!)

So this is the cake I made...even though it felt like my creative juice was stuck and my body was still on jetlag...I thank God that the cake turned out quite pretty :)
Because I was sick for 2 days, the cake making had to be delayed to the last minute..thankfully, a good friend of mine was willingly to come and help me with the cake. She helped me made the flowers..I know it didn't sound like a lot of help, but it was! I thank God for good friend like her!

I hope you are enjoying your week so far..I can't believe that next week is October already! Time sure flies when you are having fun!

God bless!

Monday, 29 August 2011

Tom and Jerry birthday cake and Simple chocolate spring cupcakes



What a week it has been! it has been super super busy with sick kids, sending off design works, baking, packing (YES I'm going for a 3 weeks family holiday yay!)

We are leaving tomorrow to go Indonesia, Bali and Singapore..woo hooo!
and rather than spending my time packing, I'm blogging away because I want to show you my latest creation hehehe

I made the Tom and Jerry cake for a boy who turned 4 this week.
The inspiration came from Warner Bros, Cartoon cake by Debbie Brown book.
Rather than copying the original design (which I don't like to do anyway), I wanted to do something cuter..and here it is! Super cute...it was lots of fun to make too!


I also made these simple cupcakes for my best friend who turned 34 this year. They were done in a rush, I think I did them in less than 15 min! (decorating them I mean, not including baking time) Didn't have time to let the flowers completely dry either...but they turned out okay! Thank goodness!

Okay, I'm off packing again and hopefully the kids will be well behaved through out the trip tomorrow!

Have a great week all and happy baking!




Thursday, 18 August 2011

Kamen rider cake, Lilac mini ruffles cake and Little monster cake



Last week was my youngest son's 2nd birthday. I still can't believe that he has turned two..oh how fast time flies. I remember when I first held him in my arm...he was so tiny... He was born premature at 32 weeks, he seemed so fragile and helpless. And look at him now, he is so full of personality, very cheeky and super active. He loves exploring, climbing and dancing. Definitely not a helpless little boy anymore! oh how he grows so fast! he will be forever my baby boy!

So this is the cake that I made for him for his special day. A little monster cake for my cheeky little monster! Happy birthday boy...the best is yet to be!


My parents 15th mini anniversary cake - Mini ruffles cake

On the same day as my son's birthday, is also my parent's wedding anniversary. This year is their 15th wedding anniversary and we decided to celebrate it together. I wanted to surprise them with a cake. My mum's favourite colour is lilac and because they don't eat much cake so I thought a mini cake would be perfect for them! The look of my mum's face when she saw the cake was priceless..Happy anniversary to my parents!



On the same week, my friend asked me to make her son's 8th birthday cake. His favourite super hero is Kamen Rider ooo. Kamen Rider is a Japanese action figure/superhero..very popular in Asia I heard. When I did my research, I couldn't find many info or something that inspire me for the design, (not much in english anyway hehe) in the end I decided to go with the colour scheme, red green & yellow.
I am not too happy with the final design..I think it needs more personality on the cake. But the boy & mother were very happy...that made me feel a little better. oh being a perfectionist is not easy! lol

Have a great week everyone and Happy baking!


Saturday, 6 August 2011

Bumblebee Transformers Cake


 

This has been my cake project this week, Bumblebee from Transformers movie...my favourite yellow Autobot!! I made this for my friend's son who turned 4 this week. At first I wanted to make something that's more colourful, cute, and fun..something like Bumblebee coming out of a cake. But somewhere a long the way I had a change of heart and leaning towards something that's more realistic and boyish. Not sure what got into me..maybe living with mostly boys at home did that..LOL!
 

The story is Bumblebee emerged from rubble after almost got defeated by Decepticons. (This is my version of the story)..This is the scene where he got back up to fight back Decepticons..In the end of course he won! hehe

Honestly I didn't think it was possible to make this character..I'm a pink..roses..girly girl type of girl..what do I know about robots! but I did it and it was lots of fun to make him too! :)


Happy Birthday Theo! it's a shame that we can't make it to your birthday party..hope you have an awesome party and hope you like the cake too!!

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Threadcakes Competition 2011

Old school Nitendo games theme cake

Yay I just finished uploading my entry to Threadcakes competition!
This is my first year entering this competition. The idea of the competition is to design a cake based on t-shirt design on Threadless Tees. You can find out more about it on Threadcakes.

So, this is what I made for the competition..an old school Nitendo Games theme based on their original design. You can see the design on Threadcakes site.

I'm sooooooo excited and I hope they like it!


My 4 year old son's favourite character, Super Mario :)


Here is the link to my entry:
http://www.threadcakes.com/entries/view/1128

Wish me luck!

Friday, 15 July 2011

Ham, cheese & tomato baked eggs



I love cooking breakfast for my family and this is what I love to do in my spare time. To me the best breakfast are (beside pancakes and waffles) eggs and toasts ....mmm I love eggs...crunchy toast soldiers dipped in soft runny egg yolk...so simple yet so delicious. Yummo!




This recipe is very easy to do and super delicious. I made this for my family this morning and they love it! well everybody except my 1st born son who is a very picky eater..so I made him a grilled cheese instead..oh the thing I do for love hehe

I got this recipe written in my recipe book but I'm pretty sure it was taken from Jo Seagar's book "It's easier than you think"..anyway here is the recipe:

Ham, cheese & tomato baked eggs.
serve 4

1/2 cup chopped ham
2 spring onions, thinly sliced
1 tomato, chopped (I used cherry tomatoes chopped in half and I put 2 cherry tomato into each dish)
4 eggs
4 Tbsp cream
salt and pepper
1/2 grated cheese
toast soldiers to serve

Method:
  • Preheat the oven to 180C. Coat 4 individual 1/2 cup capacity ovenproof dishes with non-stick baking spray.
  • Divide the ham, spring onions and tomato evenly between the dishes. Break an egg into each dish and let it sit on top of the ham mixture.
  • Spoon 1tbsp of cream into each dish over the egg and season with salt and pepper.
  • Sprinkle the top with grated cheese.
  • Place the dishes on an oven tray and bake for 8-10 min until the eggs are just cooked.
  • Serve with toast soldiers.

Notes: To make toast soldiers, cut bread into thick strips. The bread should be cut quite thick so that it is toasted on the outside but still soft in the middle so it can soak up the yolky goodness.
Place the cut up bread into an oven tray together with the dishes, spray with oil baking spray and bake. They should be done at the same time with the eggs.


Happy baking!

Saturday, 9 July 2011

The world's easiest chocolate ice cream - no machine required!

 

If you ever thought that making a homemade ice cream is too much work or impossible because you don't have one of those fancy ice cream machine...then you are wrong...Introducing to you..

....The world's easiest chocolate ice cream that you can easily make at home..with no machine required! Thanks to David Lebovitz for sharing this recipe on his blog.

I do have a little warning that this recipe ask for quite a lot of liqueur (not that is bad hehe)..the liqueur taste is a little strong in the ice cream but I don't mind it at all :)

I have made a little adjustment in the recipe and here is my version of this recipe:

Chocolate and Banana Ice Cream
Four to six scoops
From Ready for Dessert (Ten Speed) by David Lebovitz
2 ounces (55 g) bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped ( I like Lindt 70%cocoa or Whittakers Dark Ghana )
6 tablespoons (80 ml) cream ( you can also use milk, whole or low-fat )
6 tablespoons (80 ml) Baileys liquor
1 medium-sized ripe banana, peeled*, and cut into chunks
1 tablespoon (15 ml) dark rum
Method:
1. In a small bowl set over a pan of simmering water (or in the microwave), melt the chocolate with the cream.
2. Blend the melted chocolate the Baileys, the banana, and rum until smooth.
3. Pour into a plastic or metal container, cover, and freeze for at least 4 hours.
Notes:
You can easily increase this recipe to make more than it calls for. I haven’t tried it with any other liquor, but for those of you who want to experiment, you do need to include a similar amount and percentage of alcohol to prevent the ice cream from freezing too hard. The banana gives the ice cream a smooth, creamy consistency and provides the sweetness, so use a nice, ripe one.

I found that this keeps for weeks in the freezer and maintains it’s absolutely perfect consistency. Cheers!

Monday, 4 July 2011

Stork and Baby Birthday Cake

 

Ooooo I'm so excited to show you this cake. I made this cake last week for a good friend of mine but I have to restrain myself from sharing this, well not until she shared the good news of her pregnancy to her family and friends.

This cake may look like a baby shower cake but it is not...it's actually a birthday cake.
My friend wanted to surprise her family and friends about her pregnancy on her birthday. What a perfect and lovely way to do it! I'm so super excited for her!



The best thing about making this cake was that she gave me total creative freedom to do it..how awesome is that! Thank you my friend for trusting me :)

The colour theme was inspired by Cath Kidston and the gift boxes represent her birthday :)

Happy Birthday my friend and congratulations too!

Monday, 20 June 2011

10th Wedding Anniversary Cake and Thomas The Tank Engine Cake

 


When my best friend asked me to make her 10th wedding anniversary cake..I was so excited! I had so many ideas in my head of what the cake would look but I knew from the beginning that I want to make something cute that has lots n lots of flowers (but no roses...she is not roses kinda girl :)) 


 


My best friend and her husband (who also our very good friend) are not the romantic type..they are the fun type who enjoy each other laughter and they are so young at heart. So as much as I was tempted to make pretty and romantic cake..I had to hold myself. I had to make a cake that suit their personality :)




I wanted lots and lots of flowers, and I thought white blossoms would be perfect. I must have made over 100 blossoms to make this cake..thank God for flower plunger!

I have to say this is one of my favorite cakes that I've made so far!




In the same week, I also made this famous character, Thomas the Tank Engine.
Honestly I don't know any children who don't like this character..well maybe the girls haha

I really feel so blessed to be able to make these cakes...my dream that one day I could have a cake studio and shop that has a very spacey kitchen with big oven :p

Let's dream, then do!

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Generator Rex Cake


Generator what? Rex who? yep that was first thing that popped in my head when my friend requested me to make this character for her son's 4th birthday. I never heard or seen this character before in my life before I made this cake. Anyway I said yes to her and I was happy to do it!


After few research and googling, I found this pic..and I thought...perfect!

And here it is...presenting to you Generator Rex cake..! So glad I could made a 4 year old boy a very happy birthday-boy!