Baseball Cake

Take me out to the ballgame! This baseball cake was commissioned as a birthday surprise. A three-tired cake with a baseball on top. The biggest layer, the bottom one, was only 6 inches across. Think miniature.

The birthday boy’s girlfriend wanted a Giant’s colored baseball themed cake and left the designing up to me (my favorite kind of order!). Well, baseballs aren’t orange, so I did the best I could to keep tried to the theme and stick to the basics of the game.

Everything is fondant-free, of course. I just used swiss meringue buttercream for everything. It’s nice because it hardens up in the fridge so it’s easy to work with.

My first time using the grass piping tip, can you believe it? I like the added texture.I had some trouble with the orange/white seam, as you can see, but I learned enough that the next time I make a cake like this, it’ll be even better. Not everything I make is perfect, especially not the first time around, but I try to make each project into a learning experience.

I got lucky with the dome shape at the top  – the carving could have gone horribly wrong but it worked out great! Overall, not a perfect cake but definitely a fun one! Raspberry chocolate cake on the inside, by the way. Yummy!

Pink Ombre Mothers Day Spinkle Cake

Pink Ombre Mothers Day Sprinkle Cake

I love this cake.

Let’s say it again: I LOVE this cake. This cake was inspired by this fabulous cake.  My mother saw it online and asked for the same cake, but in pink!

The outside of this tall cake is absolutely covered in rainbow sprinkles. I took all the nonpareils in the sprinkle drawer and mixed them together to make a huge bowl of rainbow sprinkles.
And the inside is even more special! Six layers of pink ombre fade, each a bit more pink than the last.

Creamy white frosting inside.

Pink cake and sprinkles, what more could you ask for? I served this cake with fresh juicy strawberries. I soaked the berries in juice and sugar, then dumped them on top of everyone’s slices. It was the perfect finish!

Just be careful when adding the sprinkles…it’s a little hard to get them to stick to the sides and there were sprinkles bouncing all over my kitchen floor as I was throwing them at the cake trying to get them to stick.
This cake was made for Mother’s Day, but it would be fabulous as a birthday cake or as a graduation cake if done in school colors.

Or any type of celebration cake, really. It’s quite festive and I think I’m going to be using this decorating technique quite a bit.

Maybe I should buy some more sprinkles.

Mini cupcakes, truffles, wedding cake, lemon meringue pies, peach tarts, cake pops, cookies, and more!

The wedding! 450 mini desserts and a cake, but I survived to tell you about it.

And now for the one post everyone keeps asking me about! Finally time for the wedding dessert table pictures. These lovely photos were taken by the lovely Stephanie Fishbein. She came over right before I packed everything up and took these shots as I was rushing to get everything into the car.
This project was incredible. My mom and I made 450 miniature desserts and a cake. Everything was drenched in color and so bright and happy. The baking took days and a mind-boggling amount of work, but I’m so glad we did it and the adrenaline rush lasted for days. The wedding colors were purple and orange and it was great to make the treats so bright!
Without further ado:

I made 50 little lemon meringue pies

50 vanilla cupcakes dipped in sprinkles and topped with creamy vanilla frosting. The cakes themselves were orange and if you look carefully you can see a bit of color peeking out from under the sprinkles.

And, of course, topped with orange glitter.

50 of these very popular Oreo red velvet cupcakes dipped in chocolate ganache with cream cheese frosting.

And 50 chocolate mint cupcakes with chocolate frosting.

Dipped in orange sprinkles for an extra crunch and pop of color.

75 beautiful vanilla-bean checkerboard cookies.

Little fruit tarts. These all had nutty crusts, vanilla-bean pastry cream, and fresh peaches. They were topped with an apricot-lime glaze to keep them fresh and juicy.

Don’t you love the heart shapes?

Homemade coffee ganache truffles.

The chocolate, surprisingly, tempered beautifully and these traveled very well and lasted a few days unrefrigerated, so I was able to make them a bit ahead of time.  I love the luster dust on top!

Quadruple chocolate cake pops.

These were so much fun to decorate and I went crazy with the sprinkles. The bride and groom supplied the vases and the marbles – I think they’re prefect.

At this point were were running short on time, so I had Stephanie photograph these in their transportation container, not on the pretty white plates.

They still look delicious!

Last but not least, the wedding cake. Inside are layers of purple cake, orange cake, and purple/orange marble cake.

Everything very carefully hand piped, which was a challenge given my lack of sleep and shaky hands. the purple dragees were carefully placed with tweezers.

The monogram topper is made out of white chocolate and edible glitter, propped up oh-so-carefully with bamboo skewers.

And here’s where I messed up. Long story short: everything traveled well, I remembered to bring my camera, but I FORGOT TO BRING THE CAMERA BATTERY. I was so excited to take a picture of the whole display, but it just didn’t happen. Fortunately, the photographer got a shot of the table, so you can get a sense of what it looked like.

My mom and I wore out matching bright pink “I Like to Bake” shirts and kept replenishing the treats as the guests enjoyed them.  You can’t see the little notecards very well, but we made little signs telling guests about each treat.

I have trouble communicating the enormity of this project. Everything was made in my little kitchen and it was a great experience to spend so much time working with my mom. My sister helped with the sprinkles, my dad made the white stands, and everything happened perfectly. I prepared for months and learned so much!

Happy Birthday Michelle!

This weekend, I have the flu. This weekend, it is also my dear friend and suite-mate’s birthday. What does this mean?

It means I call my doctor to confirm that flu can’t be transmitted via baked goods, text some other friends for help, and start baking! Obviously, the birthday girl simply had to have a cake.

We ended up with this. It was 4 layers of chocolate cake. Between each layer is a delicious glob of chocolate ganache and fresh raspberries. It’s all covered in rich chocolate frosting. And it’s completely dairy-free!

I had great plans for this cake. It was going to be beautifully piped with fancy letters and designs.

Maybe with a touch of glitter on top. Ultimately, the designs were made using a little spatula.

I got a teensy bit too excited by the glitter.

And when you’re baking in a dorm, sometimes you have to use paper plates, even for special occasions.

But you know what?

This cake was delicious. The birthday girl enjoyed it and it was gobbled up in no time. What you see here is a very well-loved cake. And that’s what matters.

We invited people over for a “surprise” party that evening, which, for a number of reasons, turned out to not be such a big surprise after all.

But we decorated the apartment nicely.

We asked the guests to come in pajamas.

We decorated cookies.

Many cookies.

We made a mess. 

I took a couple pictures, but mostly we just ate.

Nothing that day went according to plan, but I think it was perfect.

We love you Michelle. Happy birthday!

Indiana Jones Ark of the Covenant Cake and Sankara Stone Cake Pops

Dun dun dun dun, dun dun dun. Dun dun dun dun, dun dun dun dun dun! A friend and I threw an extravagant Indiana Jones movie marathon complete with arts and crafts, activities, decorations, and of course themed dessert. Think paper mache boulders, blacks curtains and cobwebs everywhere, make your own duct tape whips, DIY Holy Grails, fruit punch with rubber snakes,  and a red jello blob with a “heart” inside for a dramatic kali mah reenactment. We watched all 3 movies (number 4 just doesn’t count) and it was beautiful. Being the brilliant person I am, I deleted all the pictures from my camera without realizing that they were never uploaded. Uggh! Fortunately, my friends took great pictures of my desserts so I still have something nice to show you. 

The Ark of the Covenant cake! With red velvet insides and creamy vanilla frosting, this cake was very, very rich. I decorated it with chocolate jewels covered in luster dust and edible glitter.

The panels on the side are hand piped and made of white chocolate covered in luster dust. The little pears are edible white sugar pearls that I rolled in gold luster dust. While finishing this cake while I was sick at 1 am, I dropped the entire 8 ounce bottle of pearls on the floor. A month later, I’m still finding them EVERYWHERE!

My frind made the beautiful topper using foam board, spray paint, and a sharpie.

Ohh, shiny…

Cutting the cake.

And I made sankara stone cake pops. Easy to make, even easier to eat, and oh so cute!

Baby Cake

This was a 4 layer chocolate cake with pink frosting between each layer.

 The roses on the sides are made of chocolate and covered in luster dust to give them a bit of shine.

 I was excited by the filigree piping I did on the rainbow cake and wanted to include it on this cake as well.

Happy Birthday!

Let Me Welcome You With Rainbow Cake

I like to bake, so let me show you one of my favorite projects. This cake was made with my close friend Stephanie, who also took the fabulous photos. What was the occasion, you ask? Well, we just wanted to make a pretty cake, and that’s a good enough reason for me.

Ingredients include a ton of butter, a basket of egg whites, and copious amounts of food coloring.  Note the single 7-inch pan. Yes, each layer was baked one at a time. 

On to the batter! I love using vanilla bean paste. It’s not all that more expensive than pure vanilla, but it’s so much cheaper than vanilla beans. The paste adds great flavor, plus the vanilla bean seed speckles are gorgeous. 

Oops! I swear, it wasn’t me!

Now let’s swirl in the food coloring. I used a combination of Americolor pastes and regular supermarket food coloring. The pastes are great because they add strong color without impacting the consistency of the batter by adding too much liquid.

The blue and purple layers were made by modifying my favorite chocolate cupcake recipe from Joy of Baking.  The flavor was great, but the consistency was too gummy and dense for what I was looking for.

The green and yellow layers definitely the best flavors. The cake was moist, fluffy, and delicate. The recipe – my new favorite vanilla cake – was Sweetapolita’s Classic Vanilla Butter Cake.

Finally, the red and orange batters. The recipe was Sweetapolita’s Vanilla Buttermilk Cake. It was good, but texture-wise it didn’t hold a candle to the butter cake. 

Each layer was baked, frozen, and stacked. We made a giant batch of Swiss Meringue Buttercream and slathered it on. The great thing about Swiss Meringue Buttercream: if it curdles, you’re doing it right. The cake was frosted, which we didn’t get pictures of because we were far too excited to finally cut into it.

Would you like a slice?

I love how bright and sunny this cake is. Enjoy!