Saturday, December 29, 2012

Winter Wedding

This cake was near and dear to my heart, and in truth, had to be baked twice before I was happy with the results! But, with all my heart, I wanted it to be perfect.

So, with much fussing and playing, I managed to create a winter-themed cake with a rather large Poinsettia on top.

With a little bit of a twist, this is an egg-nog cake with vanilla-bean buttercream. The cake is covered in MMF, and decorated with sugar flowers/snowflakes (a combo if you will). I had no time to order a snowflake plunger set this year. Rats! Maybe next...

 Because the Poinsettia is so large, it actually dented to the top of the cake! I have never done a single flower on top, and was rather pleased with the off-set aesthetic of it.

 And of course, this was a drop-in wedding, so Cupcakes make things a little more munchable! I was rather pleased all around.

So, now I have some extra cake in the house... I wonder what I will use it to make next :)
Happy New Year!

post signature

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Gingerbread Home - looks like a bird house!

Asa child, my family would make gingerbread houses. We would buy one of those per-packaged kits which would come replete with icing, jujubes, and smarties. We would take a box, cut it, then line the base with tin-foil snow. After opening the candies, we (my siblings and I) were given specific instructions NOT TO EAT ANY OF THE CANDY.... Very stern!

And thus it was that our gingerbread house was made, somewhat bi-yearly, and would sit on the end-tables, uneaten (under threat for any who dared eat it before Christmas - thanks Dad). And as the days would pass, the house would become harder, and harder, and it's candy decorations (specifically the smarties) would begin to disappear piece by piece, until the day, CHRISTMAS, when the house was deemed free to eat, and was so hard it had to be tossed... a waste of food, and time. Alas, this was not in vain; the memories lasted!

And so it was that my gingerbread home tradition starts, in the dust of crumbled cookies past.

This year, as some of you may have read, I moved into my new home. This newly-built paradise, on the shores of Rainy Lake, Ontario, has become my pride and joy. In a previous post, I showed off my
kitchen and some other small quips about new-home ownership. Today, I wish to share with you all my Christmas Gingerbread Home (not a house, but a home).

Sadly, in my artistic vision, I did forget to post a door, and was stuck making a rather sad looking gingerbread bird house, but who is judging?

The roof was inspired by a card design that I received.

And of course, I could not simply make one Gingerbread house, I made several - I believe some 10 small ones or so....

And the house? Well, It met with a somewhat orthodox ending on Christmas Eve.... my mother-in-law had some troubles smashing the little structure, but with some coaxing and a butterknife, she succeeded in felling the home.

 But, as always, Photos will live on. Here is a photo of the house on my sweets tower, prior to our House-Warming/ Yuletide /End-of-the-World party. Did anyone notice how the world DID NOT end? Did anyone thing otherwise? I was certainly glad it did not end!

And, just to finish off... here is a close-up of the small Gingerbread houses... they were teeny-sized houses which fit on the end of cups. The idea was actually from If you ever find you have more time than you know what to do with, and you feel like being a Holly-Homemaker (Suzy?), check out the site. She has great ideas!

So, to close, here is a picture of my father-in-law sipping his morning coffee, eating gingerbread on Christmas.

Merry Christmas everyone! I hope your Holidays were as relaxing as mine were!

post signature

Monday, December 10, 2012

What keeps you going? Peaking into my kitchen

 For all of my adult life, I have been dreaming of my kitchen. I pictured myself in my cute apron, whipping up batches of cookies and sweets for my husband, who comes in with the paper and sits down at the table just as I place the roast ham down next to the yams.

That will never happen.

First, my husband does not read the paper, as he is technologically inclined to download it instead, or check the online headlines.
Next, he hates ham. I love it. He hates it... a dilemma if ever there was one.
Finally, my husband loves to eat on the couch. True story.... no joke. Go figure!

So, now that I have moved into my dream mansion on the lake, and my kitchen is oodles bigger than before, I get to live only parts of my dreams. At least I can share them with hubby.

December always marks baking season for me. Every year I whip up hundreds (no literally, hundreds) of goodies to give away in tins and boxes to family and friends. The way I see it, people spend lots of money and time making dainties for people who drop in for a visit, so wouldn't it be nice to give out some of those dainties and save them time?
They eat them,
They eat them as soon as they are given,
And they are happy,
Which is just as good.

This year I had the pleasure of baking goodies with friends and family in my new home. If you did not know, this was the reason I had sparse posts and uninteresting pictures. I recently moved into my newly-built home on the shores of Rainy Lake. It is a gorgeous paradise. And my kitchen is about 5X bigger, without exaggeration from what I had before.

It is so big, in fact, that I was able to have company over for a cookie decorating party (as seen above) which was super fun! I was also able to bake more than one batch of cookies for the dainty boxes, which is amazing! I have never had two batches baking in my double oven while the third batch chilled... HOW MUCH DID THAT BLOW MY MIND?!

Here's my new paradise:

 It is super hard to believe that it is perfect... except for a valance curtain (teal or yellow... I have yet to decide) the place is perfect. I even had a sign made for above the island.
Je suis la propriétaire d'une patisserie!
N'êtes-vous pas exciter? Non... mais, je suis laide.

So, from my home to yours, Merry Christmas, and Happy Holidays.

post signature

Sunday, December 2, 2012

A Sugar FLower Spread

HUZZAH! Baking in my new home has been wonderful!

In my last post, I showed you some pretty sugar cherry blossoms I had been working on...

Well, those flowers went to a cake I was making... One for my grandmother's 90th birthday party. The party was held in my home town, four hours away, so I had a lot of transportation woes... but ultimately, the cake turned out okay, for not having all my tools and tricks available.

Since I had to do a four hour commute for the celebration (YAY, grandma is totally worth it), I decided to pre-bake all cakes and cupcakes (a total of 90 of them), at home, then transport them and assemble everything at the church. Luckily for me the church had a lot of items at my disposal, and the ladies were super nice in helping me find all my gear. I had so many people watching me put it all together, which was funny, but I enjoyed it :) I don't usually get people interested in my caking.. my husband certainly finds it boring.  

I did all the sugar flowers at home too... I made two large stargazer lilies, one orchid, several cherry blossoms and about 30 blue flowers (bluebells?)... which are so tiny they just act as filler. The cake was gorgeous! As I have said before, my camera is no-go until my computer is up, but luckily my aunt had hers!

So, with only a few cupcakes at a time, we decorated the table.... The whole room was filled with cupcake-style decorations... including cupcake confetti!!! I ABSOLUTELY had so much fun running around with confetti screaming SPARKLE SPARKLE!!! My husband, who is used to such outbursts, just laughed, while my family looked a little confused... SPARKLES ARE AWESOME!!

 My next thing to do on my list is to put up my Christmas tree and to make my house all sparkly! I am guessing that will wait until next week, as my tummy is a little unhappy at the moment. Still, it was a great weekend!
Cheers all!
post signature